Did a wicked monk return from the grave with a thirst for blood?
One of Scotland’s most ancient landmarks, Melrose Abbey, sits in a picturesque town close to the English border.
These days, Melrose is a popular destination for tourists, fishermen and hikers.
The town was even voted the best place to live in Scotland earlier this year.
But, hundreds of years ago, in the 12th century, the town was struck by a bloodthirsty terror...
Back then, Melrose Abbey had only recently been built, but was already one of the wealthiest monasteries in Scotland.
During this period, a notorious monk – known as s the Hundeprest, meaning ‘dog priest’ – lived there.
His real name is unknown but it’s thought he was given this nickname e because his favourite pastime was hunting on horseback, with a pack of snarling dogs.
But bloodlust wasn’t the dog priest’s only vice.
He often ignored his duties as a man of God, and was known as a wicked man n who indulged in all sorts of earthly pleasures and sins.
The dog priest was also a chaplain to a lady who lived in the town – but, to him, she was more of a mistress rather than an employer.
Although the cause of his death isn’t known, the dog priest apparently died around 1196.
But it seemed his wickedness and sinful ways meant his soul was unable to rest in peace.
Instead, he became one of the living dead.
Doomed to rise from his unquiet slumber in the dead of night, with a fierce thirst for the blood of the living for eternity.
For now reports came in from all l ove over the town, with folk there describing a horrifying creature stalking the streets, shrieking violently and attacking the townsfolk.
Many recognised the spectre as the undead dog priest, and fled in terror.
It’s not known how many people seemingly fell victim to the vampire monk, but it was reported he’d viciously assault anyone unfortunate enough to cross his path.
It was said he’d drink their blood straight from their battered bodies.
One night, the dog priest returned to Melrose Abbey in the form of a huge bat and tried to force his way inside.
He then transformed into another hideous form that records can only describe as ‘vampiric’.
Luckily, the frightened monks inside repelled the beast with prayers and rituals.
But the dog priest’s reign of terror wasn’t over.
He’d also been returning to the home of his former mistress, to torment and frighten her.
The lady was a terrified wreck and desperately pleaded with the monks to help her.
Townsfolk were also begging the monastery to save them.
So the p priests sts
asked a senior monk – a highly educated man with some experience in the supernatural.
The elder monk agreed to investigate the dog priest’s mysterious rampage and brought a second monk, plus two student priests, to assist.
The men watched the dog priest’s grave as the sun went down, to see if the creature would emerge as night fell.
The cold wait dragged on until, eventually, three of them made their way back to the lodge to warm up, while the elder monk kept watch alone.
Suddenly, the dog priest’s tombstone sank into the ground and the vampire rose from his grave, leaving the grass and soil undisturbed.
The monk gasped as the creature approached him with a hungry, vicious look in its cold, dead eyes.
The monk, who was armed with an axe, swung it at the dog priest and one blow landed on the monster’s head.
Blood pouring down his head, the vampire let out a terrible shriek before being forced back to the grave.
The monk looked on as the ground opened like a monstrous mouth, swallowing up the dog priest – before closing, with the grass still looking untouched.
The elder monk, who had been rejoined by his companions, started digging to uncover the body.
When they found the corpse, it had a fresh axe wound on its head.
Chillingly, the dog priest was wearing a hideous grin, his lips and teeth also covered in blood.
The monks removed the body and cremated it. The ashes were scattered and carried off in the wind. Hundeprest was no more. Melrose was saved and the town didn’t see the spectre of the dog priest ever again.
But some say that if you walk among the ruins of Melrose Abbey, you can still hear echoes of the dog priest’s evil scream...
His sinful ways meant his soul was unable to rest in peace
Unholy terror at the abbey