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The Story Behind the Legend of Bloody Mary


The Story of Bloody Mary

We've all heard the story of Bloody Mary some time or other in our lives. You stand in front of a mirror and chant her name three times. Then a vengeful ghost sometimes named Mary, but not always, comes out of a mirror and kills you in some way. But that is only one version of the story. Many people in different cultures have heard the tale be told in a multitude of different ways. For example, some people say you should say her name three times, others say thirteen. Some say instead of chanting just Bloody Mary you should chant the phrase, I stole your baby, Bloody Mary, or some variation of that phrase. (More on that later.) Some people think instead of Mary clawing out your eyes she slashes your face violently, drives you insane, pulls you into the mirror to live with her, murders you the same way she was killed, or if you escape, haunt you every time you look in a mirror. So, yes many people have heard the story of Bloody Mary but do you know the story behind the urban legend?

Queen Mary I

Queen Mary I was the daughter of King Henry VII and a Spanish princess named Catherine of Aragon. She was loved by her parents, but it was a big discouragement to the King and all of England because she was not male. The lack of getting a male heir is what drove King Henry VII to marry so many times. This eventually led him to break away from the Roman Catholic church. For Mary who was born catholic to catholic parents, her beliefs became heresy. Although, firstborn she was pushed down in the line for the throne by her younger half-sister and then her younger half-brother. Eventually, in 1553, Mary became the queen of England as the sole ruler of the country. This is when she decided to marry Philip of Spain since she, like her father, needed an heir. Two months later she was supposedly pregnant. However, the baby never actually came. although she exhibited all the signs of being pregnant and even felt the baby move. When her due date came around no baby was ever actually born and the signs of pregnancy began to recede. This is why some people chant, Bloody Mary I killed your baby, or Bloody Mary I took your baby, instead of just Bloody Mary. How did Queen Mary I get the nickname, Bloody Mary? Well, at the time England was split into two major religions: Catholic and Protestant. In her efforts to make England a Catholic country she signed an act that ended up leading to the Marian Persecutions. Approximately, 240 men and 60 women were burned at the stake because of their Protestant faith. She then died at age 42 which many believe to be the result of some kind of cancer. All that blood was primarily on her hands, solidifying her legacy in history as Bloody Mary.

Mary Worth

Mary Worth was supposedly a witch who was burned at the stake for practicing the dark arts during the Salem Witch trials. She lived in a forest in an extremely small cabin and made herbal remedies for a living. Locals of the village didn't trust her and stayed away from her fearing that they would end up cursed. When girls started going missing, the locals looked for them everywhere they could think of. When they couldn't find them anywhere else they ventured towards Mary's cabin. Mary claimed that she had no idea where the missing girls were. The locals didn't believe her and somehow thought that Mary's appearance changing from elderly and haggard to feminine and youthful had something to do with the missing girls. One night the miller's daughter supposedly heard a noise only she could hear. She followed the noise to the edge of the woods. Her mom and dad plus some of the locals followed her, frightened that she wouldn't stop no matter how much they yelled or how hard they restrained her. When the locals got closer to the edge of the woods, they realized that Mary was holding a wand, pointing it towards the miller's house and that she was glowing. The miller's daughter was heading straight towards the light. The locals quickly got their guns and advanced on Mary taking her down by shooting her in the hip. The locals quickly tied her to a stake and then burned her for practicing witchcraft. As she was dying, she cursed everyone claiming that if anyone uttered her name while staring in a mirror she would be back to exact her revenge. When the townspeople went back to her cabin they found unmarked graves telling them that Mary must have killed their children. Unlike Queen Mary I, there is no definitive proof in history that Mary Worth ever existed. In fact, many people will tell you that instead of her being a witch, she was a woman who died in a car accident one day. If Mary Worth ever existed, chances are she wasn't a witch. Many people were killed during the Salem Witch trials who weren't witches or didn't even do anything that was considered a crime.


Bloody Mary is one of the most well-known modern urban legends around. While Bloody Mary is definitely real because of Queen Mary I is the ghost story of her taking out your eyes real? No. Is she a witch who was burned at the stake for witchcraft and murdering children? Probably not. If you chant Bloody Mary three times in the mirror will anything happen? That's for you to try on your own. Are you willing to tempt fate enough to found out?

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