Bloody Mary Origin

Emma Crow, Journalist

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Teenagers have found ways to keep themselves entertained since the beginning of time, and in the most recent century, they have resorted to scaring the pants off of each other in the name of fun.

From horror movies to spirit boards, youth can’t seem to get enough of the spooks. One of the most popular games teens play to get their horror fix is known as the “Bloody Mary Mirror Game.”

Of course, it is never advised or encouraged to mess with the supernatural, but for those who have not heard of this game, it is played in a dark room (most commonly a bathroom) that is lit by a single candle. The “player” or “players” are supposed to repeat the name “Bloody Mary” out loud 3 times into a mirror, and a female demon is supposed to appear and wreak havoc on the living.

As with most supernatural topics, there is no solid proof that anything actually happens during this mirror ritual, but the idea had to come from somewhere.

Mary Tudor, one of the most detrimental queens in history, is one of the top candidates for the origin of the legend.

Mary Tudor, “Bloody Mary” www.gettyimages.com

She came into control of England after her father King Henry VIII, who is best known for decapitating many of his wives. 

During her reign, her ultimate goal was to reverse the effects of the English Reformation, which was a period of time during the 16th century when the Church of England desperately tried to separate from the authority of the Pope. The main way she accomplished this was by gathering as many Protestants as possible, tying them to wooden poles, and mercilessly burning them alive. It was this act that earned her the title of “Bloody Mary,” given to her by the Protestants who survived the Queen’s attempted genocide.

A Hungarian woman known as Countess Elizabeth Bathory Nadasdy is also considered a contributor to the “Bloody Mary” legend.

Countess Bathory www.historytoday.com

She has been described by many historians as “the most vicious female serial killer in all recorded history.” Bathory was a twisted individual who enjoyed torturing and murdering young girls. It is even said that she would drink and bathe in the blood of the youth that she murdered believing that it would keep her young and beautiful.

Not only is Bathory considered a contributor to the “Bloody Mary” legend, but a large part of the Count Dracula legend is also based on her due to her vampire-like tendencies.

Even though there is no written proof that the legend of Bloody Mary is actually based off of either of these women, many people can speculate who they believe the legend is based on.

Alexa Sorensen, a senior at PVHS, believes that the Bloody Mary legend is based on Mary Tudor as opposed to Countess Bathory because she is known for killing many people and her name, of course, is Mary so it would make sense that the legend is based mainly off of her.

Sorensen was asked if she has ever taken part in the Bloody Mary mirror ritual, to which she responded that she has not, but she has heard of it before.

On the other hand, Emily Mcfarland, who is also a senior at PVHS, believes that the legend is originated by Countess Bathory due to her bloody habits.

Like Sorensen, she has not taken part in the mirror ritual because she is “too afraid of the stories behind it,” which is probably the best response to the situation.

The love of horror drives those who are willing to further investigate the “Bloody Mary” legend, but they must proceed with caution for the results may be more horrifying than the mirror demon herself.

 

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