|The Headless Horseman has been a motif of European folklore since at least the Middle Ages. The Irish dullahan or dulachán ("dark man") is a headless demon, usually riding a black horse and carrying his head under his inner lower thigh. He wields a whip made from a human corpse's spine. When the dullahan stops riding, a death occurs. When the dullahan calls out a name, the named person immediately dies.|
German legends of the Brothers Grimm (Deutsche Sagen) recount two German folk tales of a headless horseman. In some German versions of the headless horseman, he seeks out the perpetrators of capital crimes. In others, he has a pack of black hounds with tongues of fire.