Dubbed “the most prolific female murderer of the Western World” by the Guinness Book of World Records, Hungarian Countess Elizabeth Bathory left behind a gruesome legacy for allegedly torturing and murdering young girls. Legend has it that she bathed in the blood of virgins in order to retain her youth and beauty, while other accounts say she may have been a cannibal who often bit and ate chunks of skin out of her victims, even reportedly instructing one girl to cook and eat her own flesh.

The Countess also loved to cut the webs of their fingers with scissors, stick pins under their nails (that hurts just to think about), and would cover them in honey and live ants or bees, among other horrors. The official count of how many victims she had is unknown, but one witness reported that Bathory journaled that she killed 650 women.

Elizabeth Bathory never had her day in court and was presumed guilty due to evidence collected and over 300 witnesses who were interviewed, including four who were thought to be her accomplices. When King Matthias II ordered an investigation because rumors linked the Countess to the disappearance of many noble girls, her family intervened and spared her from both a trial and execution in order to save the Royals from disgrace and embarrassment. Instead, only her purported co-conspirators were executed and she was locked in a windowless room where she died four years later at the age of 54. To this day, her crimes largely remain a mystery.

Given the brutal nature of the fate of the young girls who crossed the path of Countess Bathory, it makes sense why the subject has fascinated metal musicians. The story has it all; a beautiful woman, blood, murder, and mystery.  Below, we’ve rounded up some of the best songs that center around the Blood Countess. Check it out and be sure to follow this list on Spotify.

Metal Bloodbath: Songs About Elizabeth Bathory Spotify Playlist

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