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The Vampire of Ropraz by Jacques Chessex (Paperback, ) for sale online | eBay

Brand new: lowest price The lowest-priced brand-new, unused, unopened, undamaged item in its original packaging where packaging is applicable. Then two more bodies are violated. Now a suspect must be found. Fevez, a stable boy with blood-shot eyes is arrested. See details. See all 2 brand new listings. Qty: 1 2 3. Buy It Now. Add to cart. Be the first to write a review. The virginal daughter of a local judge dies of meningitis. On a howling December day a lone walker discovers her tomb recently opened, her body violated, left hand cut off, sex mutilated and heart torn out.

The Vampire of Ropraz

Horror in the nearby villages, the return of atavistic superstitions, mutual suspicion in the heart of winter. Garlic and crucifixes are again brandished in this Protestant region. He is convicted, subjected to psychiatric treatment and then vanishes in Chessex takes this true story and weaves it into a lyrical tale of fear and cruelty.

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This portrait of late 19th century country folk still in the thrall of vampirism sheds new light on our early 21st century urban obsessions with multiple rapists and psychopathic serial killers. Jacques Chessex here presents a semi-fictionalised account of actual events. The town of Ropraz in Switzerland at the turn of the twentieth century was gripped by tremendous fear after the body of a young woman, the daughter of a local justice of the peace who had passed away from meningitis, is discovered to have been disinterred and interfered with in the graveyard itself.

Ropraz itself having already been moved to great despair by the tragic death of the beautiful girl is incensed at the monstrousness of the crime. The body has been sexually molested, chewed on and even had organs cut away by a sharp blade.

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Only a fiend could be capable of such a horrific crime. The people take to their homes, arm themselves and whisper to one another at night of the Vampire of Ropraz. After shock comes anger and a desperate need for swift justice.

Accusations are thrown against innocents, family feuds are reignited, suspicion falls on medical students, butchers and well-known criminals. The police are unable to find the culprit and then as the winter snows melt further outrages are committed against two more girls, thought safely resting in their graves. The vampire seems to be on the move, striking out to find more amenable hunting grounds in neighbouring towns.

Then a man known as Charles-Augustin Fevez, a drunk with an exaggerated gait due to a dislocated shoulder, is identified as the culprit. Found molesting a cow in a stable, the leap from bestiality to bestial savagery is an easy one to make in the eyes of the public. The vampire of Ropraz has been found and the people want revenge.


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What follows is a fascinating account of mob-justice and early psychiatry. Not that any argument protesting his innocence is made — this book is more interested in how a human can be made into a monster to excuse the crimes of the people around him. The small towns in Switzerland are in this period crippled by poverty and misery, with alcoholism, incest and mental illness found everywhere:. They hang themselves a lot in the farms of the Haut-Jorat. In the barn. From the ridge-beam.

Vampire of Ropraz

There can be no justice, only the exacting of a brief vengeance before life trundles on. In a strange inversion, Fevez becomes alike to the virginal innocents he is supposed to have ravished. Chessex ends his tale with the troubled man from Ropraz gaining immortality from an unexpected source. A very curious record of a grotesque and bizarre historical event.

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