Myths: Aswang

December 8, 2009

There are many mythical creatures in Filipino folklores but the one that is most commonly told are about Aswangs. The aswangs are evil vampire-like creatures that are told in many stories from the different places such as cities and provinces of the Philippines. When I was about 13 years old I went to the Philippines to visit by relatives. When I was there my uncle told me when my aunt pregnant one night the neighbors saw something in the roof of their house. My uncle heard a strange sound on the roof and woke up my aunt. He went outside and asked the neighbor who was on the roof or throwing rocks they said they saw something like an aswang. Ever since that night my aunt would sleep with a bible and a rosary next to her.

There are many different stories about the aswang. Aswangs are like a combination of a witch and a vampire and always portrayed as a woman. They are also known as witches, manananggals, shapeshifters, lycanthropes and monsters. The aswang stories differ from regions and the people who tell them. One description that is highly told of an aswang is that they can slip their bodies in half from the torso. The bottom half stays on ground while the upper half with wings flies to look for food.  Aswangs favor pregnant women because they feast on the unborn child. The aswang goes on roof of their victims/mothers house and sticks out its long thin tongue, which penetrates through the mother’s belly button sucking out the child and organs. Another story of an aswang is that they are beautiful when they are in human form. They find their victims especially men and take them to an abandoned area where they kill the man and eat his organs. Aswangs are mythological creatures that have been told since pre-colonial times.

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