The concept of anything being cursed is just a load of nonsense, right? Well, maybe not, if the stories of these real-life objects are anything to go by. Indeed, the tales that have followed these items throughout the years are just way too spooky to disregard offhand. So, read on if you dare…
20. The Koh-i-Noor diamond
“Only God, or a woman, can wear it with impunity.” So decrees the curse of the Koh-i-Noor diamond, the words of which can be found in a Hindu text from around the early 14th century. What’s more, it’s been said that the men who once possessed the enormous stone subsequently found their lives blighted with treachery, murder and violence. And perhaps with this in mind, the Koh-i-Noor has only been worn by women after the British royal family acquired the diamond in the 19th century.
19. James Dean’s car
Rebel Without a Cause actor James Dean met an untimely end in 1955 after crashing his beloved Porsche 550 Spyder, once dubbed “Little Bastard.” But he isn’t the only one to have suffered at the hands of the cursed car. Indeed, others have also been injured or killed while driving in vehicles that contained parts from Little Bastard’s wreck. A warehouse storing Little Bastard even once burned down, although bizarrely there was no harm done to the Porsche itself. It’s perhaps for the best, then, that the car hasn’t been seen for more than five decades.
As he is thought to have lived as long as ago as 3,300 B.C., Ötzi is the oldest mummy ever discovered in Europe to date. But even millennia after his death, he apparently still has some influence. After all, it’s been said that several people who have come into contact with Ötzi’s corpse have later passed away mysteriously. Among these unlucky individuals are Helmut Simon, one of Ötzi’s discoverers, and Konrad Spindler, the first person to investigate the mummy’s remains. Spooky.
17. The Myrtles Plantation mirror
While ghost sightings in old houses are commonplace, not many residences can boast of having a haunted mirror. But Louisiana’s Myrtles Plantation can, as legend has it that one of the building’s wall hangings contains the ensnared souls of a woman and her children. In fact, several visitors to the St. Francisville-based plantation have even taken pictures of what could be interpreted as spectral faces in the mirror. All we know is, we’re not going to check it out any time soon.
If you ever visit Australia’s Uluru, don’t be tempted to chip off any souvenirs to take with you. After all, you may live to regret it. In 2008, for instance, it was reported that park rangers were constantly receiving parcels containing returned stolen rocks from remorseful individuals. And around 25 percent of the packages also included harrowing tales of awful luck that the people concerned had experienced after their thefts. Surely that’s no coincidence…
15. The Desert Bloodwood
“Desert Bloodwood” isn’t just an awesome band name; it’s also the nickname for an Australian tree. How did it get such a mysteriously cool moniker? Simple: it’s all thanks to the red, blood-like sap that oozes from the tree’s bark and which has led some to suggest that the species is cursed. That sticky liquid has proved helpful, though; indigenous Australians have actually used it as a form of antiseptic, for instance.
14. A Bulgarian phone number
Strangely, the Bulgarian cell phone number 0888 888 888 is also said to be cursed. Why? Well, its past three owners – including the CEO of the telecoms firm that first issued the number – have all passed away within a decade of each other. It’s perhaps for the best, then, that 0888 888 888 was taken out of use entirely in 2010.
Keen horror movie fans will no doubt already be aware of Annabelle. After all, the cursed doll has already been the subject of two films: The Conjuring and Annabelle: Creation. And while the real-life Annabelle isn’t quite as inherently creepy as her on-screen counterpart, she may be just as evil. That’s because spooky stories surround the supposedly possessed toy, who has apparently assaulted her previous owners.
12. The Black Orlov
The Black Orlov diamond may be beautiful, but possessing it once came at a price. Indeed, at least three of its owners have been reported as throwing themselves off buildings in the 1930s and ’40s. Apparently, the precious stone became cursed after it was stolen from a statue of Brahma, a Hindu creator god. Eventually, however, the diamond was broken into three segments – a process which supposedly lifted the hex once placed upon it.
11. The dybbuk box
A wine cabinet may not strike you as the most obvious item to be haunted. But according to Kevin Mannis, a dybbuk – or evil spirit – resides inside one particular box he sold on eBay. And there may be some truth to Mannis’ assertions. That’s because people have apparently experienced shared nightmares, health issues and even a stroke while in possession of the creepy cabinet.
10. The Woman from Lemb statue
This spooky statue, discovered in 1878 but dated to around 3,500 B.C., has reportedly resulted in the deaths of no fewer than four different families. That’s right: not just the specific owners, but their entire families, too. All seven members of Lord Elphont’s clan are said to have perished within six years of him obtaining the artifact, for instance. And even the curator who took possession of it for the National Museum of Scotland is alleged to have died less than a year on.
9. The Basano vase
Death has apparently followed the Basano vase ever since it was carved in the 15th century. And the curse on it apparently began when its original recipient, an Italian bride, passed away suddenly on her wedding night. Furthermore, legend has it that every one of the silver object’s subsequent owners succumbed to similarly mysterious deaths. And so if rumors that the Basano vase is now buried deep underground are true, it’s probably for the best.
8. The Crying Boy
While most supposedly hexed items are fortunately one-offs, the prints of one painting are said to have carried a curse far and wide. That artwork is Giovanni Bragolin’s The Crying Boy, reproductions of which apparently kept turning up undamaged in house fires around the U.K. Eventually, British tabloid newspaper The Sun even arranged bonfires to get rid of copies of the artwork, just in case.
7. Busby’s stoop chair
Thomas Busby apparently cursed one oak chair in 1702, just before he was hanged for slaughtering his father-in-law. And throughout the 20th century, so many people allegedly died after coming into contact with the chair that it was eventually hoisted from the ground in a museum in North Yorkshire, England. But the weirdest part of this story? According to a furniture historian, the item was actually made nearly 140 years after Busby died.
6. The Terracotta Army
For the Chinese government, the 1974 discovery of the Terracotta Army was a goldmine. But for the seven farmers who actually unearthed the 2,200-year-old stone warriors, all that awaited them was famine, poverty and death. Indeed, by 2007 three of the men had died, poor and ill. And while the workers were apparently promised compensation for their find, the money given to them by the government was allegedly claimed instead by officials.
5. The Hands Resist Him
William Stoneham’s 1972 painting The Hands Resist Him was based on one of the artist’s own childhood photographs. And while the little girl’s empty black eyes – not to mention those hands in the window – are spooky enough on their own, the curse that apparently surrounds the artwork is even more terrifying. Indeed, tales of supernatural goings-on and death have followed the picture for decades. What’s more, when The Hands Resist Him was being sold on eBay in 2000, some people even claimed to have had weird experiences just from looking at the listing.
4. The Hope Diamond
According to legend, the Hope Diamond may be rather unfortunately named, as it has purportedly left a trail of death and misfortune in its wake for centuries. In fact, its supposed owners – among them Russia’s Prince Ivan Kanitovski and France’s King Louis XIV – apparently all suffered terrible fates. On the other hand, though, it’s been speculated that the “curse” on the Hope Diamond was simply dreamt up to help increase the precious stone’s value. But whatever the truth, we wouldn’t ever risk buying it even if we could afford it…
3. The Delhi Purple Sapphire
At this point, it may be safer just to eschew jewelry altogether. After all, there’s a pretty good chance it’s probably cursed. Take, for example, the Delhi Purple Sapphire (actually an amethyst), which was apparently stolen in 1857 from a temple dedicated to the god Indra. And, so the story goes, the theft left a curse on the jewel, with all of its subsequent owners suffering from financial issues, health problems and even death.
2. The Baker wedding dress
If you’ve ever been to Pennsylvania, you may have encountered the Baker Mansion, which was built by Elias Baker in 1849 and is now a museum. And if you have plans to visit the mansion, it’s best to avoid the wedding dress on show there unless you’re prepared to be spooked. That’s because Elias’ daughter Anna allegedly haunts the gown, her ghost infuriated by the dress’ presence because Anna herself died unmarried.
Though he may look unassuming, Robert the doll supposedly carries a terrible curse. According to legend, he was originally crafted and hexed by a mistreated servant practiced in the dark arts. Even more terrifyingly, Robert was reportedly seen wandering around at night and heard having conversations with its owner. He now resides in a museum after having allegedly tried to kill a ten-year-old girl to whom he was gifted. And if you want to take a photo of Robert there? You need “permission” from the doll, or misfortune will follow you, too.