Bloody Mary as an Urban Legend – Assignment Example

The paper "Bloody Mary as an Urban Legend " is a worthy example of a literature assignment. Officially speaking, an urban legend is any story that is circulated within a given population and believed, at least by some, to be true. These stories are usually intended to frighten or restrict behavior in some form or fashion. An example of an urban legend is the story of Bloody Mary. According to the legend, Bloody Mary was an old woman who lived in the woods just outside of a small Pennsylvania town. She made her living by selling herbal remedies and was known far and wide as a witch who no one would wish to cross. When the young girls in the town began to disappear, though, the townspeople got suspicious but could prove nothing although the old witch was looking much younger. Then the miller’s daughter began seemingly sleep-walking one night when her mother happened to be awake. The mother’s cries woke the whole town as she and the father attempted to restrain the girl and eventually, the witch was seen standing under a tree pointing her glowing wand toward the miller’s house. The townspeople caught the woman, beat her and burned her at the stake. Before the woman died, though, she screamed a curse at the crowd and promised that she would avenge herself upon them from the spirit world. From this story, the legend suggests that anyone who now stands in front of a mirror and repeats the phrase ‘Bloody Mary’ three times in a row will invoke the witch’s spirit as well as her vengeance. Upon finishing the third repeat of the phrase, the image of the witch is supposed to appear in the mirror’s surface. The person who invoked her is torn to pieces and their soul is yanked violently out of their bodies to become trapped in the mirror for the rest of time suffering from the pain of the flames that stripped Bloody Mary of her life so long ago. Obviously, this urban legend is intended primarily to scare the listener, but it may also have some warning in it not to tempt the dead, not to seek the company of witches or not to appear so different from one’s community that they become suspicious of your activities.