(c) Google Images. All images remain the property of their original creator.


If you are a fan of Scare Theater, like I am, then you will recently have seen a video about a demonic entity that calls itself ZoZo. I thought this might be interesting to do a bit of research on and share with all of you.

Supposedly according to this website, the name ZoZo was listed in the 1906 book, The Infernal Dictionary, by Manuel A. Malet as a nickname used by a demon called Pazuzu – a soul stealer. Now I can’t find much information about this book, although others claim ZoZo’s name appears in Dictionnaire Infernal, which was written by Jacques Auguste Simon Collin de Plancy (try saying that three times fast) in 1818 and does exist. This site says that the mention is as follows:


ZoZo, a demon whom accompanied by Mimi and Crapoulet, possessed a young girl at Teilly, a town in Picardy in 1816 .

This site also provides an argument that this could also be Zoso, who was associated with Led Zeppelin and some websites do seem to write about this same entity with this spelling instead.

People claim to have encountered this demon up to the present day in various forms of spirit communication. This includes ouija, EVP, automatic writing, pendulum sessions and various others. All encounters with this entity are unpleasant and unpredictable, but most of the recorded experiences are directly related to ouija. I previously wrote two articles on ouija, one an instructional post designed for those of you who intend to use it and that can be found here. The other was simply ouija stories.

The majority of the articles I have found about this demonic entity are about how to react should you encounter him during an ouija session. Warnings that ZoZo is hanging out with you include:

  • Rapid figure 8 movements of the planchette.
  • Spelling out of the words ZOZO (duh), MAMA, OZ, ZO, ZA, ABACUS or ZAZA. The demon is supposedly fixated on spelling its own name repeatedly in an attempt to have it spoken out loud.
  • Extreme feelings of hate or sadness during and following the session.
  • A shadow figure moving around the ouija board area.

If you do encounter this entity, the advice is the same as if you should encounter any unpleasant spirit through an Ouija board.

  • Stay calm.
  • Close the board properly.
  • Do not use the same board again.
  • Never speak the demon’s name, or read any of the words being spelled on the board. Names give power.

Although stories of this demon do seem to go back to the 80s on the internet, this could all well be another viral marketing campaign, as there is a movie coming out in the next year or so about ZoZo.

It is always worth reminding people out there though to be careful with things like Ouija because whether you believe there are demonic entities out there who love hanging around at teenage sleepovers, the power of suggestion can be a powerful thing, especially to anyone who is especially vulnerable or generally emotionally unstable.

Supposedly knowing about this demon now means it is aware of you too, so avoid speaking its name and maybe hold off on the sleepovers for a while.

Stay safe.




The Curse of the Crying Child

The Anguished Mandownload

(c) Google Images. All images remain the property of their original creator.

The Crying Boy

I have written about curses before and they are certainly something that continue to interest people.

Rumours of this curse seem to have originated in 1985 when the Sun newspaper (tempted to put newspaper in inverted commas there) reported that a firefighter from Essex claimed that paintings of The Crying Boy by Giovanni Bragolin were frequently found undamaged in the ruins of burned out buildings. This supposedly meant that firefighters refused to have the print in their own homes.

Numerous people seemed to come forward following this article, including Ron and Mary Hall of South Yorkshire, Janet Wyatt (Isle of Wight) and Linda Fleming (Leeds). All claimed they had either experienced fires involving the painting (left undamaged), or had tried to destroy the painting (and failed).

The most logical conclusion here is that the painting is coated in some kind of fire retardant material which preserves it during fires. However, you could also argue that surely this would also apply to other paintings involved in house fires that don’t survive  the blaze and it doesn’t seem to be fire retardant in the YouTube video at the end of this article.

Supposedly if you hang a picture of a crying girl by Bragolin beside the crying boy then you will either be fire free, or experience an even worse house fire. So clearly the crying boy is either a lonely pyromaniac who just needs the love of a good woman, or a pyromaniac who also has social issues.

I’m unsure if all of the paintings by Bragolin are cursed, or there are particular prints that cause issues. He painted upwards of 65 paintings of crying children, so maybe just boycott the artist if you feel nervous. There are also reports that other artists have similarly cursed paintings and you can read about some of those here.

If you would like to read more about the Bragolin curse in particular then I can recommend this excellent post by messybeast.

So is it true? Who knows. People who have sadly lost their homes in terrible fires want something or someone to blame for their misfortune, that is human nature. The key point of the curse is supposed to be that you are at more risk from it once you know about it. People often try to find some sort of sense in tragedy, because understanding is the key to banishing the terrifying unknown. It is always nice to have a scapegoat and furthermore, to feel as though through doing something, like getting rid of a painting for example, you are averting some future tragedy that might otherwise be out of your control.

To me it is often scarier imagining what is out there in the darkness than in confronting it. More often than not we find a purely logical explanation for the demonic howling outside the window at 3am (extended happy hours or amateur karaoke are the most common causes around here). But there is always that more primitive side of your brain that whispers, what if.

I decided to write this post after walking past a charity shop window the other day and seeing a large picture of a crying boy in the window. I remembered reading about this years ago and it made me wonder about the history of the painting I had seen. Was it one by Bragolin, or are crying children just amazing muses? The good news is that it didn’t seem horribly charred, so maybe it was just that crying children didn’t really evoke the sort of warm, non depressing atmosphere the donator goes for in their interior decor. I like to think of myself as a skeptic most of the time (although I do have this yearning for there to be something more, hence this blog) but I find it interesting that I don’t think I would hang a painting by Bragolin in my home. Would you?


Atlas Obscura

Dr David Clarke

The Hands Resist Him

The Anguished Man






General wittering


(c) Google Images. All images remain the property of their original creator.

I try not to do too many of these sorts of posts because, let’s face it, you’re not here for me. You want to be scared and not in a, I’m wearing no makeup today after four hours sleep, way. Trust me, it’s not pretty.

I have returned from South Korea, which is a very interesting place by the way. I have started a new job in Wales, am looking for a new house and am getting married in November (because I decided that the best way of ending 2017 is doing three out of the top five most stressful life events simultaneously). I’m not crying, you are.

I am not always the best at updating the blog, although I do always try to read your comments and keep a general eye on the site when possible. Sometimes I simply lack inspiration, other times it is just too much going on in the real world. Trust me, ghosts and demons have nothing on irate customers and bank managers.

I have been debating for a while about maybe creating a YouTube channel, it would be a bit of a mix of stuff like on here, although I would want to brush up my editing skills before inflicting them on the world. Is that something you would be interested in? By the way, I recommend checking out Dark 5 on YouTube for a channel of weird, but interesting stuff. In no way sponsored, am just a fan.

Hoping to get some new content up today. Random aside, I booked my tickets for the new IT film today. Anyone else excited?

Waking the Dead


(c) Google Images. All images remain the property of their original creator.

Disclaimer: I am posting this for fun and because people enjoy reading about these things. If you choose to play any of these games then you do so at your own risk.

How to Play


  • Credit goes to EbonWolf88.
  • This is one for all you DIY spookies out there who don’t fancy building a whole scary mirror box of doom.
  • Author notes that this ritual may not work if you are not into Khemeticism, the religion of ancient Egypt as this ritual incorporates elements of that.
  • Once you begin construction you cannot allow anyone to tamper with your equipment (oo-er) or interrupt the process.
  • If you have to use the safe room then I suggest remaining in it until dawn and then smudging the whole house the following day once you have removed all of the ritual components.
  • When choosing a room to perform the ritual I wouldn’t recommend it being somewhere anyone sleeps. In fact, I wouldn’t recommend doing this in your home at all.


  • Enamel spray paint in matt black.
  • A large sheet of cardboard.
  • Bat or Dove’s blood ink. You can buy it here, or for my fellow UK people, here. Aside from Amazon I haven’t used these other suppliers so accept no liability for them screwing you over, should it happen.
  • Calligraphy or parchment paper.
  • A quill, paintbrush or a calligraphy pen.
  • Pliers.
  • Rubbing alcohol and a cloth.
  • Metallic sharpie in any colour.
  • Rubber cement.
  • A square mirror with removable frame.
  • Salt.
  • Thick, black cloth, large enough to cover your mirror.


  • Remove the glass from the mirror frame and clean it throughly with the rubbing alcohol, being sure to remove any stains, smears or fingerprints. Be careful not to cut yourself kiddos.
  • Put all of the other supplies in the room you will be using for your ritual.
  • Take it outside and lay it on your piece of cardboard. Holding the can of paint around 10 inches from the glass (to avoid air bubbles) spray one side black. Leave to dry.
  • Once you want to start your ritual, go to the ritual room (well, duh). Close the door and tell everyone not to disturb you.
  • Take the mirror frame and using the metallic sharpie, write ‘wake the dead’ on each of the four sides so that it will show once the mirror is replaced.
  • Draw a border line around the frame, to contain the words you have just written and do so in a single continuous motion so that there are no gaps or breaks. This is important.
  • Using the pliers, remove any fastenings or hooks from the back of the mirror. You don’t want to hang it on the wall.
  • Lay a line of salt across the doorway of your room, to trap anything nasty inside. Make sure that each time you leave after this you don’t disturb the line.
  • If it makes you feel better you can set up a safe space in another room by putting a line of salt across the doorway with a gap for you to enter by – if you do have to enter the room then use more salt to seal the gap behind you and wait in there until dawn.
  • Always do this part last because things may happen once you complete this step. Using your pen/quill/paintbrush and ink, write on it the first four lines of the Pyramid Text Utterance (Hymn for waking the dead). This is as follows: “O, raise thyself up, Unite thy bones to thee, Collect thy limbs, Shake the earth from thy flesh.” Once this part has been written, ensure you do not look behind you at any point during the ritual, whatever the provocation.
  • Use the rubber cement to stick this piece of paper to the inside of the back panel of the frame.
  • Leave your room and make sure to close the door behind you.
  • Go and spray the second coat of paint onto the mirror and leave to dry.
  • Return to your room and kill time for half an hour or so, remembering not to look behind you at any point. Beware of reflective surfaces at this time.
  • Go and get your mirror, closing the door behind you again and making sure not to disturb the salt line.
  • Ensure that on the side painted black none of the mirror shows through. If this is the case then you replace it into the frame, the shiny side facing out. Do not look into the mirror once it is assembled and be prepared for weird stuff to happen.
  • Cover the mirror with your black cloth and things should settle down. Keep it covered unless you want to use it.
  • There are no instructions provided by the OP about how you should use your mirror or what to expect if you do. Rituals involving mirrors are normally designed to turn them into a portal or doorway of some kind. As such, I would expect that you should be able to talk to the dead. My only comment is that in many of these rituals the warnings are always the same, the dead, or those posing as them, lie and make promises. You should not trust or believe anything they say.
  • If you intend to leave this mirror up in the room then I would suggest surrounding it with a ring of salt.
  • The OP suggests that each time after using the mirror you should leave it outside, face up during the next clear new moon for at least an hour. This is probably intended to cleanse it as the new moon is believe to be purifying. You can read something about purifying objects with the new moon here. This cleansing process is optional, but the longer the parchment and black side of the mirror spend together, the more powerful they become.

Safety first

After writing articles such as this one, you should probably clear your very weird browsing history. Bats Blood anyone? waking dead people? Normal people just worry about porn.

Anyway, careful with the glass, don’t inhale too much paint and avoid being eaten by flesh hungry Egyptian mummies (ugh, this just made me remember watching the new Mummy film.).

Risk level

High. Not enough information provided about certain parts of the experience. Also a high risk of zombies.

Would I play?




Good news. I’m not dead.


I am just writing a quick post to explain my rather long absence from the blog.

I am moving to South Korea in two weeks and preparations for this have kept me away from writing for quite some time. There has been a bit of writers block thrown into the mix if I am honest, too.

There will be some new posts to come fairly soon, but please allow some time for me to settle into a new country and a new job.

Thank you for those who have continued to read this blog and welcome to those who have recently subscribed. Apologies again for the rather sporadic nature of the posts over the last year.

As always, I appreciate those who have contacted me to check I wasn’t abducted by pirates or something equally exciting.

Lost Love


(c) original creator. All images remain the property of their original creator.

Disclaimer: I am posting this for fun and because people enjoy reading about these things. If you choose to play any of these games then you do so at your own risk.

How to Play


  • Credit goes to Reddit. I have adapted the ritual a little to add a few bits here and there that I think may be beneficial.
  • The idea behind this ritual is to allow you to move on from a lost love. We’ve all been there and pizza and ice cream only helps so much. As the OP states, fellow skeptics can treat this as a mental exercise, a placebo of sorts.
  • You need to do some research into water deities and pick one that most resonates with you. Here are a couple of links to get you started: 1 and 2. The links include some ideas of what the deities like offering wise, but if all else fails, food or wine is usually a good bet.
  • You can use essential oil in your bath to make the experience a little more enjoyable. If you want to know which oils may be most beneficial for you, you can read a little here.
  • You may feel drained after completing this ritual. That is normal.
  • There is no issue with stopping this ritual halfway through and starting again at another time.


  • A bathtub.
  • Scented soap.
  • Essential oil.
  • An offering for your deity (food etc).
  • Candles and matches (optional).
  • Something on or in which to place your offering.


  • Set up the room for your ritual. This involves placing and lighting candles, if desired. Run a warm bath and add a few drops of an essential oil, or whatever else you would like to be in the water. You need to create an atmosphere where you feel safe and comfortable.
  • Place your offering on a plate, or in a glass, or however you would like to present it.
  • Try and imagine the water as more than it is. Close your eyes and picture it as suffused with light, alive with energy. This may take some practice for some among you, but there is no real right or wrong with this particular ritual.
  • Call on the deity of your choice, this can simply be repeating their name out loud, or talking to them if you choose. Explain that you wish to be cleansed of a former love, so you can move forward and leave the sadness behind. There are no particular words or way of doing this, this ritual is about you.
  • At this point, close your eyes and decide for yourself if you are truly ready. Are you able to leave this love affair behind and move on? There is no time frame for recovering from grief, it isn’t a race, you may need to block someone on social media, find a way of distracting yourself or just come to terms with what has happened. This is the moment to think about all of that.
  • If you are ready, simply begin to cleanse yourself all over with your scented soap of choice.
  • Say out loud, ‘I cleanse my body of you (ex lovers name). I cleanse my spirit of you. With this act I sever the link that has connected us. With this cleansing, I move on with my life as you no longer have the same place in it. Our bond is hereby broken. I wish you no ill will and hope we both move on in perfect love and perfect peace. All that I have shared with you, I reclaim, all that I reclaim will empower me once more.’
  • Finish your bath. Before leaving the bathroom, thank the deity for its presence.
  • Go to bed and sleep.
  • In the next day or so place your offering beside a body of water and leave it there.


Safety first

Usual warning about lighting candles and burning down the house you twisted firestarters.

Risk level


Would I play?


The Senorio Ritual


(c) Martyn Smith. All images remain the property of their original creator.

Disclaimer: I am posting this for fun and because people enjoy reading about these things. If you choose to play any of these games then you do so at your own risk.

How to Play


  • Credit goes to The_Kalawishis
  • This ritual is simply provided for interest. I don’t recommend performing this. Unless any of you own a secluded manor near Mexico City then you wouldn’t be able to play anyway.
  • Also known as The Manor Ritual. It took place in a Manor (obviously) near Mexico City in the eighteenth century.
  • Usually played by peninsulars and criollos, New World figures who were at the top of the sistema de castas racial hierarchy.
  • It is said that this ritual was only performed a few times and had died out almost completely by the time of Caste War of Yucatan (a Mayan uprising) took place.
  • There may be links to the human sacrifice rituals which were practiced by the Aztecs, although the OP notes that such links are tenuous at best. The connection appears to be that the ritual was performed near Tenochtitlan and involved staircases and blood.
  • The effigy was most commonly fashioned from straw, cloth and wood. Although it is said that the family performing the ritual would, in extreme cases, use a deceased Native or African laborer, painted and dressed appropriately.
  • There are over twenty variations of this ritual, each deviating in insignificant ways.
  • It is not clear what ‘black blood’ actually is. The OP describes it thus, ‘in illustrations, it is often depicted as a red liquid, dark to the point of almost being black (in one source it is completely black, the same color as the text). Given its name, some have ventured to conjecture that black blood is blood mixed with ashes, although that conjecture does not help answer the question of exactly what animal the blood would come from.’



  • A  secluded manor house with two stories and a straight stairwell ascending from one to the other.
  • An assistant.
  • A chair.
  • A pike.
  • Linen.
  • Black blood.
  • An effigy of the ‘victim.’
  • A sack or piece of cloth.
  • Three candles
  • A full length mirror.
  • A lighter or matches.


  • First you must select a room in which to play. The room should be above another. The OP describes this room as “el piso de la sala superior es el techo de la sala inferior’, that is, the top rooms floor is the bottom rooms ceiling.” You should clearly be able to hear someone speaking in the ‘superior’ room.
  • Clear all furniture from both rooms (above and below), including all portraits or photographs, especially anything that is connected to the family (heirlooms etc). If either room has windows, these must be covered.
  • A lone chair should be placed in the middle of the ‘superior’ room, facing the door.
  • The floor of the interior room should be covered with linen.
  • A pike should be stood perpendicular to the floor in the ‘inferior’ room.
  • An assistant should prepare an effigy of the intended ‘victim’ of the ritual, usually an enemy of the family. This effigy should be attached to the pike, ensuring that it does not touch the floor.
  • After full dark, the performer, customarily female, should sit on the chair in the middle of the ‘superior’ room.
  • From here there are some minor deviations based on the time period in which the ritual was performed. To avoid confusion I am using the later method.
  • The assistant should now place a full length mirror upright beside the door and light three candles before leaving the room, covering their face with a sack or cloth as they do so.
  • You should now place the mirror so it leans against the door as vertically as possible, facing the chair.
  • The assistant should take a case of ‘sangre nagra’ or ‘black blood’ to the inferior room. They should pour the black blood over the effigy and loudly chant, ‘el te derriba,’ (he casts you out) seven times. The blood should cover the effigy and drip onto the linen on the floor.
  • Once you hear the seventh, ‘el te derriba,’ you should begin your part of the ritual. You should cover your ears with your hands and say, ‘dios no ve este casa,’ (God does not see this house) seven times.
  • Now stare at the mirror and bare your teeth at your reflection, blinking as seldom as possible.
  • The assistant should wait a moment for ‘el diablo ha tenido suficiente para beber,’ which translates as ‘when the devil has had enough to drink.’ This is usually the moment when the last of the black blood has stopped dripping onto the linen.
  • The assistant should now leave the ‘inferior’ room and go to the ‘superior’ room and knock on the door. This alerts you to begin the next phase of the ritual.
  • You should now leave the room, relocating the mirror and candles to their former positions on the way out. Approach the head of the stairwell.
  • The assistant should return to the ‘inferior’ room and detach the effigy of the ‘victim’ from the pike, bringing it to you. You now throw it down the stairs, saying, ‘el te derriba.’
  • The assistant should retrieve the effigy and hand it to you so the process can be repeated until it totals seven times, although some deviations specify only three. You should repeat ‘el te derriba’ each time, getting louder with each repetition.
  • The effigy should now be burned by the assistant.
  • The assistant can now clean up, which includes removing the mirror and candles and storing them in a secluded, but secure location. The mirror must never be broken.
  • If the ritual has been performed correctly, the victim should come to a sudden and unfortunate end within seven days. This can be via illness or a dark figure that will appear in their room and spirit them away. If however the ritual has been performed incorrectly, then you and your family will pay a heavy price.

Safety first

It is said if you perform this ritual incorrectly you will hear Sympathy for the Devil playing repeatedly in your ear for all eternity. Not really.

Risk level


The OP details a great number of things that can go wrong with this ritual. I quote directly from the OP here:

‘The most common mistake is to pour too much black blood onto the effigy, letting the liquid drip onto the floor for far too long.

Though the ritual should start well after dusk, various sources emphasize how it needs to be performed quickly, and a small number warn that if the ritual drags on after midnight then it could have deadly consequences.

Rare but valuable personal accounts from performers of the ritual often note how they can feel an unnerving presence around them as they sit, head covered or uncovered, in the superior room. Notably, those who adhered to the later custom would often see their reflection slowly and subtly morph into a repulsive and demonic figure, baring its teeth back at the performer in the dim light.

An obscure account from a servant’s diary, one that was restored by a local librarian after many weeks of labor, tells of an envious aging wife who wanted to kill a woman whom her husband was doting on with the ritual, using the later custom. The servant, who was the assistant for that particular ritual, accidentally poured too much black blood onto the effigy, thus letting the ritual drag on past midnight. He described how, just as the trickle of black blood was beginning to slow, he heard a series of frantic screams from the wife above him. He rushed up to the superior room and pushed open the door, knocking the mirror onto the floor and shattering it. The wife claimed to have seen the devil completely materialize in the mirror and attempt to step out of it before it was shattered. Various times after that event, the servant records sightings of a dark red, almost black figure in various places around the manor and its grounds, sightings which stop with the death of the wife less than a month after the ritual.

The second most common problem that occurs during the ritual involves the phase when the effigy is thrown repeatedly down the stairs. From the repeated impacts many effigies fall apart, and can only be taken back up a stairwell in tatters. Limited accounts of this happening all mention that a foul odor beyond that of the effigy’s material or that of black blood seems to emanate from the effigy’s exposed innards, leaving behind a sickening miasma that seems to inhabit the stairwell for weeks. Those who use the stairwell regularly after that are documented as developing symptoms similar to those supposed to be inflicted on the victim. Perhaps most disturbing was the account of a family that used a fresh cadaver of a Native laborer. They had committed to casting the laborer down the stairs a full seven times, but on the sixth time the corpse opened its eyes and growled demonically. The panicked family incinerated the effigy immediately, terminating the ritual. The family patriarch, who describes the ritual in his diary, then begins to describe vivid nightmares and episodes of sleep paralysis involving the effigy watching him as he lay in bed. He writes of these incidents almost nightly for a month before his diary inexplicably ends.’

Would I play?