The Tales Behind 13 Famous Haunted Castles

As the nights get longer and Halloween draws near, you'll want some spooky stories ready to tell. The best ones are those that end with "and every bit of it is true- you can look it up!" Well, we don't know how true the hauntings are, but there have been plenty of shenanigans perpetrated in ancient castles that could have plausibly left spirits with unfinished business behind there. And the reports of those hauntings are documented. For example, the castle pictured above is Leap Castle in Coolderry, Ireland. The 13th-century castle was inhabited by the O’Carrol family for hundreds of years.

Legend has it that there was a fatal power struggle among the O’Carrols in the 16th century. In a bid for power after their patriarch died, one member of the family killed his brother, a priest. Visitors today have reported seeing a priest wandering the “Bloody Chapel.”

But it gets worse. In the 1990s, renovators found a “secret dungeon” in the chapel filled with dozens of skeletons. People claim the dungeon had a trap door through which the O’Carrol’s prisoners would fall onto wooden spikes and die a painful death out of earshot from chapel visitors.

And every bit of it is true- you can look it up! Read about Leap Castle and twelve other haunted castles around the world at Mental Floss. There, now you have 13 spooky stories ready to tell your kids or your Halloween guests.

(Image credit: Mike Searle

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