Saturday, November 30, 2013

Ever Wear Necropants...?

I know you could stand a little weirdness today, and I have just the thing!

I had never heard of these until I read this article at KnowledgeNuts! Seems like something I should have known about before now, though! I mean, I thought I had seen and heard of a lot of strange stuff...until now! This goes far beyond my level of strangeness, that's for sure! Once again I find myself admitting that I don't even know something. In this case, maybe that's a good thing!

The Pants Made Of One Piece Of Flayed Skin
By Debra Kelly on Friday, November 29, 2013

If you think carrying a rabbit’s foot for luck is of questionable taste, necropants are right off the charts. Necropants are pants made of the skin of a friend who’s agreed to have their body flayed from the waist down, thankfully post-mortem. A part of Icelandic witchcraft, the wearing of necropants is supposed to bring the witch increased wealth.

Necropants. (Go on, say it a few times. It’s fun. We’ll wait.) And now for the cringe-worthy story behind it.

Witchcraft and sorcery were all the rage in the 17th century, and one thing these witches had in common with almost every person of today’s world is the need for more money. So they came up with a rather ingenious spell for ensuring a constant supply of wealth.

First, a deal had to be made with a male friend. This friend had to agree to supply the skin for the necropants (or nabrok) after dying a natural death. After the friend passes away, he is allowed to be buried. The witch then needs to exhume the body and flay it from the waist down, very carefully. Every part of the skin had to be intact and the pants in one piece for the spell to work. There needed to be no holes or tears in the skin, which undoubtedly made for a painstakingly difficult process. After removing the skin, the witch would steal a coin from the dead man’s widow and place it inside the scrotum of the pants. (Every part removed intact, remember?) Then, they only had to add a magical symbol called the Nabrokarstafur written on a piece of parchment.

Now put on the pants.

The necropants will bond to the witch’s own skin, and the magical piece of paper will ensure that there’s a few more coins inside the necropants’ scrotum every day—as long as the widow’s coin is never removed. For as long as the witch wears the pants, they will look so much like their own skin as to be indistinguishable. Which is a good thing—no one wants to be caught wearing necropants.

The Icelandic witches were nothing if not practical. If someone was found worthy enough, the necropants could be passed on to another down through generations. In order to keep the magic in them, the witch would have to get rid of the pants before they died.

? A pair of replica necropants are on display at the Strandagaldur, The Museum of Icelandic Sorcery & Witchcraft. The displays of regional magic is quite different from European witchcraft, and includes some of the spell components needed for spells to make one invisible, and to summon a goat-milk-stealing creature. (You need a corpse’s rib bone wrapped in wool and kept between the breasts of a woman who has spit out her Communion offerings for three weeks in a row, in case you were curious.)

These rituals were by no means the norm for Icelandic cultures, any more than the witches of Salem were thought to be anything but unholy. Witches were viewed as heretics just the same as they were in Europe and the New World. More frequently it was men would be executed for practicing witchcraft rather than women, but the taboo behind the practices were the same. Witchcraft was often seen as the last resort of an oppressed, poor people who had little education and little chance to advance through a strict class system without some outside help.

Each and everyday I realize that this old world is far much stranger than even I thought! That, my friends, is saying a lot!

You know what? It looks like a beautiful day outside, so let's have our coffee out on the patio this morning!


Unknown said...

What is this?? For me it is unbelievable. Is this true?? How it is possible in the practical life.

Kopi Luwak

Chickenmom said...

Wonder how long they lasted.....
Really cold here at 14 degrees. I'll bring some corn bread and honey for all to enjoy!

Mamahen said...

Wonder what kept them from smelling bad or just rotting away? The magic?! The patio it is, n cornbread n honey sounds good too :))

Sixbears said...

Wow! How weird is that? New one on me. Kinda disturbing, but at least they waited for a natural death.

linda m said...

That is just too weird. How could anyone in their right mind do something like this. Coffee outside sounds great right about now. I think Winter cold is here for a long time.

HermitJim said...

Hey Glan...
Luckily this is not still practiced, at least to my knowledge!

You have a great day and thanks for coming by today!

Hey Phyllis...
I kinda wondered that same thing myself!

I love cornbread and honey!

Thanks for coming over today!

Hey Mamahen...
I'm not sure I even want to know!

Cornbread and honey and sunshine...winner all around!

Thanks for the visit today!

Hey Sixbears...
See? I told ya it was strange!

Disturbing on so many levels!

Thanks for dropping by today!

Hey Linda M...
It does sound more than a little crazy!

At least it's a tad warmer here than at your house!

Thanks for the visit this morning!

JO said...

Well isn't that to disgusting LOL
I tell you that can make you lose some weight. Hang that picture on your fridge.

I'll be right there for coffee sounds nicer at your place than mine. Very cloudy at this hour it is still only 47.

butterbean said...

Howdy HJ,

You can come up with the darndest things !!!!! WOW, sounds like a Nazi prison camp thing!!! Or else this is where the Nazis got the ideas from!!
What do you want to bet it happens to someone in this day & time, as a 'copycat' incident!!!
I'd like to be on your patio this mawnin'!!! Hope y'all have a HAPPY DAY!!!

Dizzy-Dick said...

I think I will stick with my jeans.