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The Source:

Samuel Friedrich Lauterbach
"Kleine Fraustädtische Pest-Chronica"
Joh.Fried. Gleditsch und Sohn, Leipzig, 1710

The Case:

In his report about the Plague in the town of Fraustadt, Lauterbach tells us that the so-called "Schmätzende Todte" are sometimes taken from their grave to be cremated. He then gives an example that he has taken from a work by someone called D. Hörnung.

In the year of 1572 a dead woman was buried in Reusch-Lemberg. After her funeral a terrible plague started. It did not stop until they had dug up the deceased and chopped off her head. She was found to have part of her clothing in her mouth.

The Date:

The events are said to have taken place in 1572.

The Place:

Reusch-Lemberg is the old German name. It has been renamed to Lviv. And the town of Lviv can be found in the Ukraine, somewhere along the side of the Polish border.

Possible Follow-Up:

Go find yourself a copy of Lauterbach's "Kleine Fraustädtische Pest-Chronica" and compare his report with my rendering of the facts. Lauterbach informs us that he has taken this story from something written by D. Hörnig. Let's try to find out if that is our ultimate source.

© 2011 by Rob Brautigam - NL - Last changed November 2011

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