Many people use the term ghost and ghoul as one in the same. They truly are not. Ghosts are spirits where the origin of Ghouls comes down to devourer of human flesh.
Definition of Ghoul:
an evil demon, originally of Oriental legend, supposed to feed on human beings, and especially to rob graves, prey on corpses, etc.
-a grave robber.
-a person who revels in what is revolting.
Ghouls are also associated with “Goblins” though they are not the same either.
The definition of a Goblin from the dictionary:
Goblin, gnome, gremlin refer to supernatural beings thought to be malevolent to people. Goblins are demons of any size, usually in human or animal form, that are supposed to assail, afflict, and even torture human beings: “Be thou a spirit of health or goblin damn’d, …” (Shak. Hamlet I, iv ). Gnomes are small beings, like ugly little old men, who live in the earth, guarding mines, treasures, etc. They are mysteriously malevolent and terrify human beings by causing dreadful mishaps to occur. Gremlins are thought to disrupt machinery and are active in modern folklore.
Ghouls have their roots in the Arabic words ghul and ghula (ghulah). They refer to a number of creatures: male and female in Muslim folklore that have an insatiable hunger and feed on human flesh. They are nocturnal and inhabit graveyards and desolate places. They prey upon travelers, children and corpses stolen from graves.
In Persia, a ghul is a giant or large person and not particularly bright.
In western culture, ghouls are generally thought of as living creatures who appear gaunt and hungry. They often have long limbs and clawed fingernails. Ghouls are also described as undead humans who sleep in unmarked graves, waiting to feast on graveyard corpses and travelers.
Beginning in the 19th Century, the “term” ghoul applied to Body Snatchers. Body Snatchers would steal bodies from graves for the medical world for research.and for students to dissect. It’s well believed that medicine would not have advanced without this practice; as appalling as people thought this practice was at the time.
Overall, Ghouls grew to the height of popularity through Hollywood and Horror films. They are “creepy” and “ghoulish”! The Body Snatcher is a 1945 horror film directed by Robert Wise based on the short story The Body Snatcher by Robert Louis Stevenson
Halloween is just around the corner! I will be putting up a few more posts that relate to Halloween, so stop by and have fun!