The Demonic Horrors of Houska Castle: This Haunted Fortress was Built to Contain a Gateway to Hell
If you’re looking for a one way trip to the underworld, there’s no shortage of alleged “gateways to hell” hidden all over the world. Kansas has the infamous Stull Cemetery, Greece has the Cape Matapan Caves, and Indiana had the Demon House (until Ghost Adventures‘ Zak Bagans tore it down), and though each location has a rich and fantastical history of unimaginable evil, none of them can compete with the terrifying background of the haunted Houska Castle.
Many of the world’s so-called gateways to hell amount to nothing more than a creepy setting with a really spooky urban legend attached, but then there’s Houska Castle, a 762-year-old gothic castle that was built to seal shut what locals believe is the real-life entrance to the underworld. Constructed between 1253 and 1278 in the Czech countryside, the location of the massive mansion was specifically chosen in order to seal up a mysterious “bottomless pit” where demonic creatures would enter our world after the sun went down.
Terrifying stories about the pit and the monsters that would claw their way of it at night – black winged creatures that were half human and half animal – spread far and wide. Villagers were terrified to be out of their homes at night, and many of them would never venture anywhere close to the hole, even during the brightest daylight hours.
Before construction on the hellmouth fortress began, all of the village’s prisoners who had been sentenced to death were marched to the edge of the bottomless pit and condemned to a particularly sinister fate: they were tossed in. Any prisoners who managed to make their way back from the pit alive were forgiven for their transgressions and set free. As you might imagine, that didn’t happen very often.
The very first man who was tied up and lowered into the pit began screaming in terror the moment he passed out of eyesight. When the frightened villagers hoisted him out of the darkness, they were horrified but what they saw. The prisoner, who had been a young man only minutes before, had aged more than 30 years while he was in the pit, and now had a full head of white hair.
As frightening reports of the demonic creatures attacking locals and dragging them into the bottomless pit began to grow in frequency, the villagers knew something needed to be done. Construction on the massive castle began with the hopes of sealing the gateway to hell for good.
More on this story at http://weekinweird.com/2016/10/29/houska-castle-gateway-to-hell/