Sunday, July 21, 2024

The Gates of Hades – The Houska Castle

Written By Shraddha NS


The mere mention of its name conjures images of demons, torture and the devil himself. But, does the underworld exist or is it simply a myth and superstition. There is a castle in the forest of the Czech Republic. It is said that a portal to hell itself exists beneath its foundation. So let me take you through the spine-chilling mystery of the Houska castle.

30 miles north of Prague and the cold forested mountains lies an ancient stone fortress known as Houska caste. Its foreboding walls tower over travellers with fake windows dotting its gray exterior. The castle was supposedly built at the order of Ottakar II of Bohemia during his reign in the late 1200s with the alleged purposed of being an administration hub. Ownership of the castle would pass through countless hands over the centuries. But in spite of renovations, it remains an ominous location.

The manner of its construction is particularly strange. It had no external fortifications, no source of water, the castle was also lacking a kitchen and housed no occupants at the time of its construction. These oddities make it seem as though Houska castle was not built to keep something from getting in, but rather to prevent something from getting out.

The folklore surrounding Houska castle only serves to deepen its mystery. Local stories tell of a bottomless pit in the land where he castle now sits. A pit so deep that no one could ever see the bottom. It was said that animal – human hybrids would emerge from the hole, when darkness fell, creatures stalked the earth and sky hunting down anyone who was unfortunate enough to be within their sight. The beasts would then drag their prey into depths where they were never seen again.

During the castle’s construction prisoners who had been condemned to die were offered a pardon if they consented to being lowered by the rope into the hole and report what they see. A young prisoner volunteered and was lowered into the darkness below. He went silent for a what felt like an eternity. Everyone looked down into the abyss watching and waiting for him to speak. Paniced screams came from the pit as the man shrieked to be pulled out. When the man emerged, he looked as though he had aged over 30 years. His hair turned white, the prisoner then went incoherently insane and died shortly afterwards.

Centuries later during WWII, the Nazis allegedly conducted experiments in the castle. It was said that they sought to harness the power of hell itself.

The castle still stands to this day as a hotspot for paranormal activity. The castle purportedly has several entities that lurk upon its premises. A bullfrog human hybrid, a headless horse and an old woman and several other demonic beasts which managed to escape the pit. Strange pagan art adorns the walls of the castle chapel the exact place which supposedly covers the pit. The depictions of bestial creatures and demons mingle with saints and angels screams and scratches are said to be heard from beneath the stone floor where the ancient portal to hell remains buried. The truth to this story is yet to be found by the civilians and archaeologists.


Featured Image Courtesy – All That’s Interesting



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4 COMMENTS

  1. Very good article, nicely explained, have covered all aspects of beauty in script writing. Keep it up Shraddha and continue writing on more topics too.

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