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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Rougarou

Curious to the answer of this week's question? You'll find it in today's post. The Rougarou has various alternate spellings as well as being attached to several cultures: the French, Native American and English. This legend has a werewolf quality to it.

Through the French culture, the Rougarou, or as it is sometimes known as Loup garou, is thought to appear with a human body and head of a dog or wolf. Some stories say it will hunt down Catholics if they don't follow the rules of Lent or break it seven years in a row. Obviously, these stories are told to persuade children to behave. Another legend states, the Rougarou is under a spell for 101 days. After this time has passed, the curse transfers to another person, of which the original is drinking blood from. The former creature turns human once again and goes on living life as normal.

In Native American folktales, the Rugaru is sometimes described as being like bigfoot or a wendigo. Some stories state if you see a Rugaru you turn in to one, and is to wander the Earth forever as this monster. Rugaru is not a Native American term. It is believed they picked it up from French Canadian trappers and/or missionaries. While wendigos are feared, Rugarus are considered more sacred like bigfoots.

The Old English version of this tale was used as inspiration for an episode of Supernatural. This legend dates back to the 16th Century. They considered the Rugaru as more of a genetic defect rather than something you could catch from another person or a spell. Basically, a person with this gene would live a normal life until it becomes active. Then, the creature's bones moves under its skin and it gains an uncontrollable hunger trait, craving raw meat. However, the final transformation wouldn't be attained until the creature takes a bite of human flesh. Then, the skin and eyes seems to rot. There are only two ways to kill a Rugaru: fire and decapitation. The supposed "attacks" have taken place up until 2008. The victim was a child and the Rugaru was scared off by their father. Many missing person cases are believed to be linked with this creature.

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