Encyclopedia of Vampire Mythology

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PICACAS

(PEA-coc-ass)
Variations: Pisacas, Pisachi (feminine form), Pisakas, Pishachas, Pishashas
In ancient India there was a demonic race of vampiric Asuras known as picacas. They were evil by nature, chattering incessantly and, although aligned with the RAKSHASAS, were ranked beneath them. The picacas often warred against the Aryans, a race of tall, white-skinned people who migrated to India from central Asia; the Daitayas, a race of giants; and Nagas, god-like snake beings. They ate the flesh and drank the blood of both the living and the dead, being particularly fond of pregnant women. Picacas lived in abandoned places, burial grounds, and charnel houses but have been known to hunt in the jungle, spreading diseases while looking for humans to afflict with insanity or consume. Carrying iron or a piece of the neem tree will ward a picacas off.
Source: de Gubernatis, Zoological Mythology, 376; Keith, Religion and Philosophy, 384; Meyer, Sexual Life in Ancient India, 94; Rose, Spirits, Fairies, Gnomes, 261
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