Encyclopedia of Vampire Mythology

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VAMPIRE PUMPKIN

During the 1930s and '40s a researcher named T. P. Vukavonic was studying the Lesani Gypsies of Serbia for a book he went on to write, titled The Vampire. Much speculation has always existed around Vukavonic's telling of the Lesani's belief in a vampiric pumpkin, and in truth they may have been teasing the author and made up the story on the spot. No matter if the belief was originally meant to be a joke or the retelling was some bit of old and nearly forgotten lore, the fact remains that the vampire pumpkin has woven itself into the lore of the vampire.
The Lesani Gypsies of Serbia have a belief that by keeping a pumpkin in one's home for more than ten days, by using it as a siphon that has not been opened for three or more years, or by keeping it in the house after Christmas Day will cause this fruit to become a vampire.
The vampiric pumpkin will look much like it did before its spoiling, maintaining its color, shape, and size. Fortunately, the vampire pumpkin does not actually attack anyone in a physical way, making it quite possibly the most harmless of all vampires; however, it does ooze blood and roll around on the floor making an annoying "brr, brr, brr" sound. To destroy the vampire pumpkin, there is a precise process that must be followed. First, the fruit must be boiled in water after which the water is thrown away. Then the vampire is scrubbed with a short whisk broom and the pumpkin is thrown away. Lastly, the broom must be burned.
Source: Gypsy Lore Society, Journal of the Gypsy Lore Society, 25­27; Keyworth, Troublesome Corpses, 70; Perkowski, Vampires of the Slavs, 207; Shashi, Roma, 134
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