The world is a big and mysterious place, one filled with myths and legends that have been passed down for generations. Unless someone makes it their mission to seek out these tales, a lot of them will often go unheard by most of the population. They can be incredibly fascinating to read and discover, as they can often tell us about the sorts of worries that were going on in the area at the time of their conception.
We thought it would be fun for us to pull together some of these legends and take a look at them. While the first twenty are myths from around the world that continue to give us the creeps, the last five are urban legends that have actually been debunked in the past. That way, people can get to the end of this list and still be able to leave the house safe in the knowledge that at least some of these are definitely false!
It's about time that we got sucked in and took a look at these myths and legends. We don't think that anybody will know every single one of these tales, no matter how much time they've spent looking into them!
25 The Pennsylvanian Clownman
People will remember that period of time, not long ago, when various clowns were seen wandering the streets of the US and the UK, but there have been other legends about clowns within the US.
In Pittsburgh, a teenager went missing and was later found.
The story goes that this crime was perpetrated by someone that goes by the name 'Clownman'. There has since been a few sightings by young people who are brave enough to go walking in the woods.
24 The Grave Of Lilly E. Gray
As can be seen by this image, Lilly E. Gray is a name on a headstone in a graveyard in Salt Lake City. However, it's the odd epitaph on the grave that has lead many people to create theories about what could've sadly taken her from this world.
Victim Of The Beast 666
Everyone will admit that this isn't the sort of thing that is usually seen on a headstone, so it's no wonder that people have come up with all sorts of theories on why this epitaph is here. Will we ever know? Probably not...
23 The Well To Hell
It's no surprise that urban legends are everywhere on the internet, as anyone can publish what they want, but this myth was actually reported on television news!
It states that an engineering team in Sibera accidentally stumbled upon a borehole that broke into Hell...
They lowered a heat resistant microphone down into the hole, and it was claimed they heard the tormented screams of the damned. Not exactly the nicest day on the job, so it's a good thing that the story has never been properly confirmed!
22 The Dark Past Of The Volga
This story has been spread in areas such as Poland, Hungary, Belarus, and Ukraine. It reached its peak in the 1960s and 70s, where it was pretty much widespread across each of these areas.
The legend says that a car that looked just like this started to go after children.
Depending on the specific story told, it could have been a whole host of people behind the wheel, from vampires to satan himself. It's not surprising that many children ended up growing into adults that felt pretty uneasy around this car!
21 The Stow Lake Ghost
This story has been doing the rounds for nearly a century at this point, originating from Stow Lake in The Golden Gate Park.
It tells the story of a woman who lost her baby while taking a walk around the park.
She was resting and chatting with another woman when the baby disappeared from its stroller. The mother walked around the entire park, looking for her child, but couldn't find her. She, then, walked into the lake looking for her baby, after which she was never seen again. Some believe that this woman can still be seen in the form of a ghost, haunting the lake forever.
20 The Ghostly Samurai
The Kuchisake-onna figure has appeared in numerous Japanese ghost stories at this point, with some arguing that it dates all the way back to the Edo period.
She is a samurai who spurned her spouse, who in return altered her face.
Instead of resting, she returns to our world as a brutal and malicious character, someone who is unable to accept her fate at the hands of a spurned husband. The legend claims that she approaches people and asks them if she's pretty while wearing a mask, and again once the mask has been removed. No matter what they answer, they can expect to meet their end upon their encounter.
19 The Venezuelan Whistler
Described as an emaciated man wearing the ragged clothes of a cowboy and a hat that hides his face, this guy carries a bag of bones slung over his back as he roams barren areas of the countryside.
He towers above the standard human being and whistles a high chord progression as he walks.
Preying on young men, his victims are usually intoxicated and alone. They suddenly hear his whistling come from nowhere, unable to see its origin, before they are taken away from this world by The Whistler.
18 The Okinawa Children
Near the Kadena Air Force base there is an abandoned house, a house with an incredibly tragic past that lead many to claim that the house was haunted, even appearing on ghost tours offered to those on the base.
The abandoned house actually shared a chainlink fence with a daycare centre next door.
Children at the daycare would often throw their toys over the fence. When asked why they were doing this by the adults, they responded that they wanted the children across the fence to be able to play too, pointing at 'empty space'.
17 Texan Child Ghosts
There was a tragic accident that took place in San Antonio, involving a school bus filled with children that got stuck on a set of train tracks. The accident became such a local obsession that the local government ending up naming the surrounding streets after the poor children.
If people choose to park their car on these tracks now, and place powder on the bumper of their car, they will find their car begins to slowly move off the tracks.
When they check the powder, they'll find the small fingerprints of the children who helped save a life...
16 Native Stick People
To anyone who has ever heard of the stick people, they know that they're not to be messed with. They live out in the woods and the mountains, waiting for poor children to stray away from their parents.
Once they do, the stick people then lure them in to show them the error of their ways.
When described by people who claim to have seen them, they are abnormally small in size. From a distance, it would look just like a small animal, but this is exactly why children are as scared as they are of them.
15 The Montana Hitchhiker
There's nothing scarier than an empty road at night, as there could be anything out there. One man claims that, while driving down an empty road in Montana, he picked up a hitchhiker that was dressed in a sharp suit from the 1940s.
We wonder, why would anybody do this sort of thing?
Well, all of a sudden the hitchhiker forced the driver to stop before bolting out of the car. The man quickly drove away, but when he looked into the rearview mirror to see the suited hitchhiker, he had already disappeared.
14 Santa Clara Ambushers
In California, there's a mountain named Mount Umunhum, where people say there are a group of ambushers. If someone decides to travel up there, they will find normal roads with sparse housing.
However, some people believe that this isn't all that's up there.
Keep travelling and people will find forests, along with country roads that are impossible for two cars to drive down. Not only that, but people find it difficult to turn around once they're up there. If people don't want to be ambushed, they better be careful.
13 The Navajo Skinwalkers
This Navajo legend speaks of creatures that resemble both beast and man, that stalk the night looking for people that they can have as prey. The Navajo don't even like to discuss these creatures as they believe that anybody even speaking their name can give them power.
Coyotes that walk on their back legs.
It's no surprise that people never want to come in contact with these creatures. Try not to say their name, and people should be fine.
12 The West Virginia Mothman
Throughout a period of just over a year, between 1965 and 1966, the town of Point Pleasant in West Virginia consistently reported sighting a tall man with wings and red eyes.
This creature came to be known in the area as the Mothman.
The last reported sighting was on Silver Bridge, a bridge that then collapsed. Unsurprisingly, the Mothman has never been seen again since that bridge collapsed and it's believed that the two events are definitely connected in some way that we will never understand.
11 Scandinavian Gnomes
The Scandinavian Nisse is a creature that is said to look just like a small gnome that hides out in forests. It's almost impossible to catch a look at one of them, only ever appearing in people's peripheral vision before disappearing. This is because they are very good at hiding and can even disappear. While they can help out with chores and stuff, they will turn bitter and vicious if they feel spurned by the people living in the nearby farmhouses. It is still a tradition to leave a bowl of porridge out on Christmas Eve to keep the gnomes happy.
10 Nora The Welsh Nun
Nora the Nun is known for haunting a forest in Wales, a forest that contains a castle that has been there for decades, where Nora, supposedly, used to live. There have been hundreds of reported sightings near the castle, with many people crashing their cars in an attempt to swerve and miss a nun in the road. Having gone against the word of God, Nora was to be punished. She hid her baby in a tree before running away to escape those who were chasing her, but when she came back, the baby was nowhere to be seen. She now can't be put to rest until she finds her baby.
9 The H-Man
A legend within upstate New York is that a being known as the H-Man lives out in the woods near various campsites. There was a group of boy scouts camping out and one of them went missing. He was later found with the H-Man's calling card, an H on his chest.
It's thought that by exploring in the nearby woods, it's possible to find the H-Man's house.
People continue to be worried about going camping in the woods, just in case one of them ends up having a run in with the H-Man.
8 Daan And His Scythe
There's a South African legend that claims a farmhand named Daan would run after children, travellers and cattle during the night, going at them with his long scythe.
He was once a farmhand on a plot where he diligently looked after the land.
He was involved in a tragic accident that left him dismembered and they were unable to save him. Now he waits, with his hat low, before revealing himself to his prey and using his scythe on them.
7 A Wisconsin Town And Its Rituals
In a town in Wisconsin, one that is almost entirely flat and made up of a lot of corn fields, there are a lot of woods off the highway that shelter a church that has been abandoned for quite some time. Teenagers started to take part in satanic rituals in the church, attempting to call beings up from the Underworld. These people went missing and were later found passed out in the church. Now, people know not to stop their car anywhere near the church.
6 The Face In The Window
In Alabama, there's a place known as Pickens County Courthouse, a building that was built on the foundations of the old courthouse after it burned down. The story says that a mob surrounded the man they thought had burnt down the original courthouse.
Sadly, they got to the man and made him pay for the crime they were sure he'd committed.
Ever since that night, people say that they can still see his face in the window of the courthouse.
5 Sewer Alligators
Sewer gators are a well known myth, and for a long time nobody knew whether they should believe the story or not. The legend goes that many people were buying baby alligators in Florida before coming back to NYC and realizing that it wouldn't be long before their cute little gator would end up being a huge problem.
However, this myth has been debunked!
Not only would it be unlikely that a gator could manage to survive in the sewage, but New York City is far too cold for the gators to be able to survive as well!
4 The Organ Stealers
This is one that we've all heard of before, the legend that there are people out there that are willing to do the unspeakable and steal organs for money. They get people at their most vulnerable by luring them in and slipping them something.
The victims in the stories usually end up waking up in a bath that is filled with ice.
Needless to say, these stories have never been proven. There have certainly been people who have been slipped something while abroad, but they've never woke up in a bath filled with ice with one less kidney!
3 Exploding Pigeons
It's funny to think how many of these myths have probably changed things, despite the fact that many of them have been debunked! This one lead people to stop throwing rice at weddings, as it was believed it would cause the pigeons that ate it to swell and burst.
There is no scientific evidence to back this up.
Experts have stated that pigeons can digest uncooked rice just fine and there is nothing that would lead them to believe that people should worry about a pigeon's health, never mind it blowing up, if they ingest rice.
2 Spider Nests In People's Hair
This story started doing the rounds in the 1950s, supposedly as an attempt to get people to think about hygiene before vanity. Supposedly, a woman with a bouffant hairdo passed on in mysterious circumstances and was taken in to the doctors to be checked.
What they found were a series of spider bites.
Supposedly, her hair had acted as a perfect nest for spiders, who had become enraged and bitten her till she passed on. Obviously, this has never happened and will likely never happen. Today, the legend states it happened to someone with dreadlocks.
1 The Exploding Cactus
A cactus is a great plant, so it's not surprising to hear a story start with a family bringing one home from their holiday. However, what they didn't count on was the cactus being filled with spiders!
In the story, the plant begins to pulse and hum occasionally.
It then explodes, sending thousands of baby spiders across the room and over the family. However, experts claim that spiders very rarely burrow into plants, and if they do, they don't lay their eggs in there. Even though it's fake, this one really creeped us out.
Sources: LiveScience.com; ranker.com