Renaissance grave reveals what it takes to kill a vampire.

LiveScience unearths a scientific controversy over what seems to be a plague victim’s corpse defaced by vampire hunters:

The controversy begins with a mass grave of 16th-century plague victims on the Venetian island of Nuovo Lazzaretto. The remains of a woman there apparently had a brick shoved in her mouth, perhaps to exorcise the corpse in what may have been the first vampire burial known in archaeology, said forensic anthropologist Matteo Borrini of the University of Florence in Italy.

The remains of the woman were apparently wrapped in a shroud, based on the position of her collarbone, Borrini suggested. A corpse might appear to have chewed through its shroud because of corrosive fluids it spewed as it decayed, perhaps frightening gravediggers into thinking it was a vampire.

Other scientists say the brick probably just fell into the skull’s open mouth. But they *would* say that… if they were in the employ of the vampires!