Saved by the Bell – The surprising history of safety coffins!

Stuff of Nightmares

Modern medicine is full of wonders and lifesaving, revolutionary methods – many of which are taken for granted. But if we were to look back in time, we’d quickly realize that even death was uncertain, in a period full of strange tales and unsettling occurrences.

These grim times would fit perfectly into some Victorian horror novel, a “ Penny Dreadful ” magazine filled with tales of the unexplained… and of being buried alive . And the tale we tell today will take us dead-center into those exact times, as we uncover a very unique history of safety coffins – a once-popular safety measure that was meant to dispel the phobia of live burial and help those unlucky few that might find themselves in a dark and suffocating grave – way before death called.

It happens that recent history is rife with well-documented cases of premature burial, in which unlucky patients would be pronounced dead – only to be discovered still alive in their confined, dark resting place. Only a few were lucky and saved – most were sentenced to a gruesome ‘second’ death that is frightening and difficult to imagine. Let’s dive deep into this morbid part of history – when horror tales were frighteningly close to reality!

Taphophobia: The Prelude to Safety Coffins

“What if in the tomb I awake!” – Says Juliet in Shakespeare’s most popular play, and perfectly reflects a very real fear of being buried alive – a fear that ran rampant in the era before modern medicine. The very thought of it can send shivers down your spine and it remains a very common phobia.

Read more HERE