Werewolf occurences have been documented throughout history. Below is a collection of such stories/tales.
A Harz Mountain Werewolf Tale
Count van Breber and his countess Hilda were vacationing in the Harz Mountains in Germany. One night they stopped over at an inn, and, while talking to the innkeeper, they told him of how they had terrible difficulty crossing a brook on their way. The innkeeper identified the brook, and then told the couple that they should never drink from the brook. Realizing that she had taken a drink from the brook, Hilda grew horrified. Soon after she began to have nightmares, and act peculiarly. Also around that time, a string of child-snatchings began to take place. One night, a woman came into the office of the Count, and begged him to follow her, claiming that she had seen the beast who took her child. The woman was able to run faster than the Count, and chased the beast into a house. From the outside, the Count heard screams, mixed with animal noises. After he got inside, the Count saw the dead body of the woman, along with the hooded beast in the corner. He noticed the shape of a woman, but also, signs of hair growing rampantly on her body. The beast went for the window, causing the Count to shoot. When he found a light, he was able to see clearly that the person he had shot was his countess.
In the jungles of Peru, natives use a potion similar to the "magic salve" used by the Medieval werewolves. The salve produces a hallucinogenic effect which puts them in touch with the spirit world. Once there they can take on the shapes of animals such as Tigers, Panthers, Jaguars and snakes. In other societies there are more "Weres" than just wolves.
Little Red Riding Hood
A woman gave her daughter a freshly baked loaf of bread and some milk, and told her to take them to her grandmother. The little girl set set off, but at the crossroads she met the werewolf, who asked her where she was going. "I am taking a hot loaf and a bottle of milk to my grandmother."
"What road are you taking," asked the werewolf, "the Needles Road or the Pins Road?"
"The Needles Road," said the little girl.
"Well, I shall take the Pins Road." While the little girl enjoyed herself picking up needles, the werewolf reached her grandmother's house. He killed her, and put some of her flesh in the pantry and a bottle of her blood on the shelf. The little girl reached the house and knocked. The werewolf told her to push the door, which was only held shut with a wet straw. "Hello, Grandmother;I'm bringing you a hot loaf and a bottle of milk."
"Put them in the pantry. You eat the meat that's there and drink a bottle of wine that is on the shelf." While she ate, a little cat said:"A slut is she who eats the flesh and drinks the blood of her grandmother!" "Undress, my child," said the werewolf, "and come and sleep beside me."
"Where should I put my apron?"
"Throw it in the fire, my child;you don't need it anymore." And as the little girl took of each article of clothing, the bodice, the dress, the skirt, and the hose, she asked where she should put them, and the werewolf gave her the same answer:"Throw it in the fire, my child;you will need it no more." "Oh, Grandmother, how hairy you are!"
"It's to keep me warmer, my child."
"Oh, Grandmother, those long nails you have!"
"It's to scratch me better, my child."
"Oh, grandmother, those big shoulders that you have!"
"All the better to carry kindling from the woods, my child."
"Oh, Grandmother, those big ears that you have!"
'All the better to hear you with, my child."
"Oh, Grandmother, what a big mouth you have!"
"All the better to eat you with, my child!"
"Oh, Grandmother, I need to go outside and relieve myself."
"Do it in bed, my child."
"No, Grandmother, I want to go outside."
"All right, but don't stay to long." The werewolf tied a woolen thread to her foot and let her go out. When the little girl was outside she tied the end of the string to a plum tree in the yard. The werewolf became impatient and called out: "Are you making cables?" When no answer came, he jumped out of the bed and saw that the little girl had escaped. He chased after her, but she got back safely inside her house just as he arrived. Told by Louis and Francois Briffault, at Montigny-aux-Amognes, Nièvre, about 1885. Published by A. Millien, Mèlusine 3 (1886-7), 428-9
Livonian Wolves at the Leaping Wall
On the feast of the nativity of Christ, at night such a multitude of wolves transformed from men gather together in a certain spot, arranged among themselves and then spread to rage with wondrous ferocity against human beings, and those animals which are not wild, that the natives of these regions suffer more detriment from these, than they do from true and natural wolves; for when a human habitation has been detected by them, isolated in the woods, they besiege it with atrocity, striving to break in the doors, and in the event of doing so, they devour all the human beings, and every animal that is to be found within. They burst into the beer cellars, and there they empty the tuns of beer or mead, and pile up the empty casks one above the another in the middle of the cellar, thus showing showing their difference from natural and genuine wolves. Between Lithuania, Livonia, and Courland are the walls of a certain old ruined castle. On this particular night congregate the multitude, and try their ability in jumping. Those who are unable to bound over the wall, as is often with the fattest, are fallen upon with scourges by the captains and slain. Livonian wolves at the leaping wall effect transformation by crossing a certain body of water.
In the early 1900's a French farmer noticed two wolves approaching him. He quickly climbed a nearby tree to avoid confronting them, and was undetected in doing so. What he saw and heard was astonishing. The wolves began to talk, and one of them offered some snuff (which he had stored behind his tail) to the other. The werewolves left the snuff box behind, and the farmer was able to trace it to a local man. The farmer was careful not to reveal any names until one of the werewolves died a natural death, and marks on his gravestone resembling those of a wolf were found.
It is said that when the Holy Patricius (St. Patrick) was preaching Christianity in that land, there was one great race more hostile to him than the other people that were in the land. And these men tried to do him many kinds of injury. And when he preached Christianity to them as other men, and came to meet them when they were holding their assembly, then they took this counsel, to howl at him like wolves. But when he saw that his message would succeed little with these people, then he became very wroth, and prayed God that he might avenge it on them by some judgement, that their descendents might forever remember their disobedience. And great punishment and fit and very wonderful has since befallen their descendants; for it is said that all men who come from that race are always wolves at a certain time, and run into the woods and take food like wolves; and they are worse in this that they have human reason, for all their cunning, and such desire and greed for men as for other creatures. And it is said that some become so every seventh year, and are men during the interval. And some have it so long that they have seven years at once, and are never so afterwards.
The Beauty is a Beast
In the mountains of Auvergne, a story was told of a royal female werewolf. In the story, a nobleman was gazing out of his window and noticed a hunter he knew. He asked him to check back with details of the hunt. While in the forest, the hunter encountered a wolf, and in the ensuing struggle, he severed one of the wolf's paws. He placed the paw in his knapsack, and returned to the castle with his prize. When he opened the knapsack to show the nobleman evidence of his encounter, they discovered that there was no paw at all. In fact, the knapsack contained a woman's hand wearing a gold ring. Recognizing the ring as that of his wife's the nobleman decided to question her about her daily activities. When he went into her room, he found her concealing her arm. Once uncovered, the lack of a hand revealed her true identity. Upon further questioning she admitted to being the wolf with whom the hunter encountered, and by her confession, she marked herself for certain execution.
In the Folk Tales of the Norseman, there are legends of warriors called "Beserkers". When engaged in battle , these warriors would go into a frenzy, fearing no one, feeling no pain, having superhuman strength and never surrendering. Before a battle the warriors would dress with a shirt made of bear or wolf skin (The term Beserker translates to "men in bearskin coats" and the warriors who donned the wolf skins were known as "ulfheobar", but today both groups are both described as Beserkers). The feeling was that once dressed with the skins of an animal, the warrior would take on the characteristics of that animal. A Byzantine emperor described the Beserkers in battle as being possessed by a ferocity and madness seen only in wild beasts. The term "berserk" was derived from the Beserkers.
The Norththumberland Werewolf
In the Northumberland Country of Pennsylvania, a tale is told of a young sheep herder, and her lycanthropic admirer. The young girl was a cheerful child, and liked by everyone in the community, especially a solitary old man who everyone regarded with fear. The old man would always follow the young girl, and also sit and watch her as she tended to her father's flock of sheep. Although many wolf attacks were reported even during broad daylight, the flock that the young girl tended to remained unharmed. This went on for several years, until a farmer spotted a wolf in the moonlight. He took a shot at it, and the wolf cried out, then retreated into the bushes. When the man went to check if his shot had killed the wolf, he found the old man dead with a bullet in his chest. The girl continued to tend to her sheep herd and never once was it attacked by wolves.
The Story of Lycaon
The story of Lycaon, which originated in Greek mythology, has been viewed as one of the first werewolf stories ever. According to legend, Lycaon was a cruel leader of a cult. Rumors of the atrocities committed by Lycaon and his cult made their way back to the God Jupiter, who decided to investigate. He found these rumors to be fact, and decided to reveal his identity to the cult. The members immediately paid homage to Jupiter, however, Lycaon did not believe that he was a real God and prepared a feast for him consisting of human flesh. If Jupiter truly was a God, he would recognize the meal and decline to eat it, since cannibalism was a great sin. Jupiter immediately noticed what the feast consisted of. To avoid Jupiter's wrath, Lycaon fled to the countryside. Once there he found out what Jupiter had in store for him, slowly he began to transform into a man-wolf. The term "lycanthropy" was derived from Lycaon's name.
The Were-Jackals of the Congo
In the 1930's perched hidden in a tree an English physician witnessed a very special ceremony. It started with the beating of drums, then the nyanga (witch doctor), covered in the skin of a jackal, jumped into the center of the crowd and began to chant. The chanting grew louder, and the energy of the crowd grew as well. In the middle of the circle, the nyanga prepared a potion, and, as the silence came to a halt, he drank the potion, and unleashed the cry of a jackal. The nyanga worked himself into a frenzy beyond his physical ability, and then fell into a trance. During the trance, a man and woman jumped into the circle, and preformed a dance which became increasingly animal like as it progressed. Then, in an instant the two turned into jackals before the physician's very eyes.
The Were-Owl of China
In the mid 1700's, babies were dying in what is now Beijing China. Wherever they struggled for life, an owl was always observed nearby. Hearing of the owl, an archer waited in the room where yet another baby was dying. Once spotted, he shot the owl which left a trail of blood while escaping. Following the trail the archer discovered a servant girl who was incapacitated by a wound to her loin. She admitted leaving her room at night to feed on the babies brains. She was burned alive and the epidemic came to a close.
Werewolf Stories Total: 12