(Note: Although the Krasue exists under many different names and with slight variation in behavior, this article will be concentrating on the Thai Krasue กระสือ.)
The Krasue is an undead, some say cursed, being. It is described as having the head and long hair of a beautiful woman and a string of organs and entrails, including the heart and lungs, hanging from its trachea. It floats through the night sky in rural areas, emitting a halo of light.
The ghost is said to have vampire like fangs, and has been heavily featured in horror films and horror themed comic books throughout the years in Thailand. In some villages, women who often looked exhausted or were perceived as strange by the rest of the community were though to transform into Krause at sunset and fly around detached from their bodies with an insatiable hunger for flesh. Much like the Mexican Chupacabra, it would drain the blood of local livestock, however would resort to eating vegetation or feces if no living creature was available.
Afterwards, the Krasue would use the clean laundry left out by any locals to wipe the remains of its meal from its face and mouth. This is why many older Thai’s will warn not to leave your laundry hanging out overnight, for fear of attracting ghosts or ghouls.
Another characteristic of the Krasue is the threat it harbors to pregnant women. It is said to use its long, thin snaking tongue to infiltrate the womb and eat the baby.
This is possibly an explanation for miscarriage and disease in a time when reasons for such things were unknown. The Krasue would screech and moan outside the homes of pregnant women, much like a banshee.
The occupant would place a thorned plant around the perimeter of their home to ward it off.
After a night of gorging itself, the Krasue would return home. The headless body is cautiously concealed as any fatal damage to it would lead to an agonizing death. This is one way to hunt and kill the Krasue, as well as severing the organs from the head.
The exact origins of the creature are unknown, however there are stories that the krasue was a Khmer princess, who was burned at the stake for refusing to give up her lover from a lower social status despite being arranged to marry to a wealthy Siamese aristocrat following Cambodia’s loss in the war.
She was said to have arranged a powerful practitioner of black magic to cast a spell that would protect her from the flames. Unfortunately, the spell only activated halfway through the burning, leaving the princess with only her head and a string of organs hanging down from her neck.
Other legends speak of the practice of black magic gone awry, possession, witchcraft, bad karma and the consumption of food or beverages tainted with the saliva or other biological secretions from a Krasue.