Nowadays, vampires are a mainstay of TV, film and literature, but in medieval Europe they were a terrifyingly real prospect and omens of death and doom.
Taking the archaeological discovery of mutilated medieval skeletons buried in the west of Ireland as a starting point, Vampire Skeletons Mystery (premiering on Tuesday 6 March at 9pm) traces the rise of the vampire from medieval folk terror to 21st-century fantasy.
The fear of the undead seems rooted deep in the human psyche. But could a number of skeletons found buried in a quiet field really signal that vampires were once on the loose in Ireland?
Using medieval texts alongside cutting-edge forensic science, a team of experts from British and Irish universities explains how these ancient burials fit into a belief system that spanned medieval Europe and still survives in remote rural communities to this day.
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