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7 of the Most Scary Urban Legends in the World to Keep You Up at Night

Do you think you’ve heard some or all of the most scary urban legends in the world? Well, think again. Most of them are well known all around the US, from Halloween tales to camping stories, but some of them are only well known within their country of origin. We’re here to present you those that you’re not familiar with so you’ll have new scary tales to tell your children or your friends.

An urban legend is a story that has been passed down through the generations orally. No one can really  prove now if the tales really happened or not, however most of them all claim to be based on true stories. Be careful though, and don’t confuse them with a theory, such as conspiracy theories (you can find out more about that here: The Top 5 New World Order ‘Facts’).

If you did know them, then you probably spent quite a few nights not being able to sleep. The reason why these stories are the most scary urban legends in the world is because the elements that put them together are surrounding us all the time: a legend would involve our significant other, our family, our pets, even ourselves. And, of course, it’s always in the middle of the night, in a dark space. However, it’s not always in the middle of nowhere; the fact that all of this could have happened right there where we sleep… that’s the scary part. That’s what makes us believe in and fear them.

Make sure you have the light on, that your phone has enough battery and that your windows are well sealed, because you never know who could be out there, lurking in the dark…


7. Bloody Mary – Chicago, USA


You probably know the game: you have to lock yourself in the bathroom with a lighted candle and stand in front of the mirror. Call out “Bloody Mary” three times or just whisper “I believe in Mary Worth”.

Actually, standing in front of a mirror with a lighted candled used to be some kind of ritual in the early 20th century, for you to see the face of your conjugal companion to be. They just added a few scary details and there you go! You’ve got yourself a scary urban legend.

Can the handle the rest of the most scary urban legends in the world? Find out on the next page, but be warned: they only get scarier from here.

6. The Body Under the Bed – Las Vegas, USA


Not only is this a true story, but it actually happened several times. People would find themselves in a hotel when they started smelling something odd… and yes, you guessed correctly: it’s a body under the bed (inside the mattress, to be precise). For some reason, killers in 1999 would hide the bodies right there in the same room where they killed them. Clever?

5. Elisa Day – Medieval Europe


Elisa Day is the name of a woman, supposedly “beautiful as wild roses” who once dated a man for three days. He asked her to meet him “where the wild roses grow” and took her down to the river where he killed her. “All beauty must die”, was the final saying; and she would stay in that river, with a single rose in her hand.

4. The Curse of the Crying Boy – Spain


The story is about a painting of a crying child, from an Italian painter (Giovanni Bragolin) very well known in Spain. The painting was found intact in several burned houses. Therefore the legend says that anyone owning this painting would one night hear the boy crying, so he can distract you and murder you, and burn down the house afterwards to erase the evidence.

3. The Slit-Mouthed Woman – Japan


A Japanese woman was mutilated by her husband for cheating on him, and he left her with a scar that simulated a smile, literally, from ear to ear. From that moment, she would (of course) appear in the middle of the night asking everybody “Am I pretty?”

2. Killer in the Backseat – UK


She’s driving in the middle of the night. Another car starts following her. She gets home as fast as she can, only to discover that the other car wanted to warn her about the man with the stabbing knife sitting on the back seat of her car…

1. The Licked Hand – (unknown)


There are different versions of this one, but it’s essentially the same story: either an old lady or a girl that can’t stay home alone, so stays with her caring dog. She wakes up all of a sudden hearing a dripping sound, and goes to the bathroom to close the shower tap, although the dripping doesn’t come from there. She goes back to sleep with her dog licking her hand. This situation keeps happening, until she decides to turn the light on and find out what’s causing the dripping sound… and that’s when she discovers her dog dead with his blood dripping and a sign written on the walls “Humans can lick, too”.