Dissertatio Historico-Philosophica de Masticatione Mortuorum

The Dissertatio Historico-Philosophica de Masticatione Mortuorum also known as de Masticatione Mortuorum was published in 1679 by Philip Rorh, a theologian located at the Holy Roman Empire.    This work is basically a 24-page collection of common beliefs on vampires and other undead.

During the 17th Century, people firmly believe that the dead can return back to life and torment the living.  They were normally blamed to be the cause of the unexplainable disease and plague.  But in the works of Rorh, he said that the vampires are not only thirty for the blood of the living, they can also commit cannibalism by eating the flesh of their victim.  He called this event as manduction (The Chewing Dead).  It is quite different to the vampires that we are aware today. But nevertheless, these accounts were known to be vital on the history of vampires.

The book tells us a different ways on how one can stop the dead from returning back to life.  Many of the methods listed on the work of Rorh were proven by the recent discoveries of archaeologists. For instance, a rock was place in the mouth of the dead to prevent him from chewing the shroud.  The manduction can also be stopped by decapitating their head and by staking them to their chest and pinning them to the earth.

Rorh however, greatly disagree with these tradition, he believes that doing these to the dead bodies is a way of disrespect.  Mutilating the body of a person that is already dead is inhumane and far from a moral of a human being.  He further believes that the fumes and other substance that is coming from a corpse can affect the living and inflict diseases.


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