Folk Beliefs
general
Legends
Narrative

La Diablita (The Demoness)

The name literally means female demon. La Diablita appear late at night, only to male travelers. They appear to these males as one of the most beautiful women they’ve seen in their entire lives, and these creatures like to tempt these men off road and kill them. No man who have followed the La Diablita have survived to tell the tale. If, by some chance, light shines on them, they appear to have horns and a hoof instead of a foot.

            This was first told to my informant from her father. Her father is a first generation immigrant from Mexico. According to her father, these creatures were either the minions of the devil or the devil itself in female form. Even though she has had no first hand stories about the encounters with the La Diablita, there is more than a slight possibility of these creatures existing because Latin America is a place that that there are more than a few occurrences of black magic happening on this large continent. Additionally, it is also largely rural in nature, with much of the population being uneducated and superstitious.

            Latin America is mostly Catholic and from the name, those influences can be seen. La Diablita is translated into The Devil(Female), as Diablo is male, Diablita is female. Additionally, these stories could also serve as a warning to people not to wander the roads alone at night. From the fact that the victims were all men, also serve to show the roles of both male and female in societies, showing the fact that the unseen danger is a woman, but the visible one is male. This is due to the fact that many Latin American countries are rather turbulent and suffer dictatorships with men disappearing all the time. This particular ghoul could be a way for the folk to explain how people just disappear at night, to be never seen again, except in maybe a mass grave.

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