Wednesday, 4 January 2017

Headless Horseman

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.
The Headless Horseman is a fictional character from the short story "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" by American author Washington Irving. It has worked itself into known American folklore/legend through literature and film.

In Indian folklore the jhinjhār is a headless horseman found in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. Unlike European depictions, this headless horseman is often portrayed as a heroic figure.