“Pontianak” is one of the most famous, scariest and violent ghost in the Malaysian culture. Primarily, the Malays believe that it originates from a still born child, women who dies while giving birth, women who were killed by the pontianak or their spirits captured by them. The phrase “Pontianak” was believed from the acronym of “Perempuan Mati Beranak” in the Malay language, meaning the woman death by childbirth. After such death, precautions are taken to prevent them from rising like
- Putting glass beads in the corpses mouth so that they can’t shriek
- Placing eggs under the corpses armpits so that they can’t fly
- Placing needles in their palms so that they can’t fly also (apparently the palm helps the pontianak to fly)
Pontianak usually announces its presence through baby cries or turn themselves into beautiful lady and frighten or kill the unlucky who enter or pass through their vicinity. It usually disguise itself as a beautiful young lady to attract its victim (usually male). Its presence sometimes can be detected by a nice floral fragrance of the ‘kemboja’ (a type of flower) followed by an awful stench afterwards. The distance of a pontianaks cries are very tricky. The Malays believe that if the cry is soft means that the pontianak is near and if it is loud then it must be far.
Want to know how a pontianak kills? It digs into your stomach with its long sharp fingernails and feed on it to survive. And want to know why we don’t hang our clothes at night outside the house? It’s because people believe that it sniffs your clothes to suck your blood.
It is also believed that the pontianak can be killed by plunging a nail down the back of its neck whereby it will transform the pontianak into a beatiful normal girl.