Built on top of pagan settlement, the areas surrounding Die Karlsteine close to the city of Osnabrück in Germany, the spirit of the slaughtered pagans still linger. 

Osnabrück is a city in west Germany of Lower Saxony, founded in 780 by Charlamagne, king of the franks. But before this christian king founded this city, the place used to belong to the pagan Saxons, and it is those who are said to haunt the surrounding area near their once holy places. 

Outside of Osnabrück you will find a big heap of rock that once used to be an important pagan monument known as Die Karlsteine. 

Read More: Check out all of our ghost stories from Germany

Die Karlsteine, also called Schluppstein, is a Neolithic passage grave near Osnabrück, often used as a tomb for entire families. Karlsteine means The Stones of Charlemagne and comes after a legend about the place. 

The Massacre of the Pagans

The place around the city has been settled since the 9th century. First it was the pagan Saxon Engern, that were christened by the Franks in the 800s by Charlemagne. There was a battle between the two camps with Charlamagne on one side and the Saxon lord Widukind on the other.  

According to legend, Charlamagne carried out a massacre at this place where they slaughtered the pagan priests and destroyed their holy graves and altars.  

Charlemagne is said to have smashed Die Karlsteine with a whip after Widukind demanded a divine sign, showing how the pagan style of life was dying and how the Saxons were losing. 

Built on top of pagan settlement, the areas surrounding Die Karlsteine close to the city of Osnabrück in Germany, the spirit of the slaughtered pagans still linger. 
Die Karlsteine: A pagan monument from ancient times that were destroyed by the invasion of Charlemagne and the Christians and the source of the legend. //Source: Sail over/wikimedia

They say that the horror of the massacre of the pagans still lingers around the place, especially around Die Karlsteine. During the important dates for the pagans like during winter solstice they say you can see ors of light floating in the air.

In addition to the strange lights in the dark forest, they are accompanied by the screams of the slaughtered and see their bloodstain on the stones. 

The German Will-O-The-Wisp: Strange floating lights or orbs have been told about in the whole world. In Europe they are deeply connected with pagan roots and old folklore. In Germany they are called Irrlicht or Irrwisch (where Wisch translates to ‘wisp’.) The lights means many thing, everything from a guiding light from a dead soul, to something showing were a treasure is buried or even something more supernatural like a fairy or something else taken from the fairytales.

Kirchlengern Forest

Germany is well known for its thick forests that hide darkness, and Kirchlengern Forest is just the same. The Kirchlengern Forest is not far from Osnabrück and Die Karlsteine and many try to connect the strange things happening to the places. 

There is an area of the forest where the local forester, the police and the locals can’t explain. Since the 12th century, when Germany first started recording in writing, there have been mysterious things happening in the forest. 

Kirchlengern Forest: There is said to be strange things happening in Kirchlengern Forest, and most connects it with its pagan roots. Here from the River Else.// Source: Christian Kortum/Flickr

According to the legends about this place, People visiting the place tell of a feeling of panic gripping them. After you spend some time in the forest you get a sense of being watched by something darker. 

Read More: Check out all of our ghost stories from Haunted Forests around the world

The most scary thing though is the missing animals in the forest that are found bloody, and only the remains of them are left around the forest.  

However, when looking around for sources, there are not really many of them despite being on many topp haunted places in Germany lists online. What looks like one of the first mentions of the Horror Forest of Kirchlengern is a short story post from 2005 with no more sources added, leading to believe that the strange occurrences is a thing of fiction. 

The Pagan Legends Haunting the Stones and Forest

The legends and mysteries surrounding Die Karlsteine and Kirchlengern Forest continue to captivate the imaginations of locals and visitors alike. Whether rooted in historical events or embellished by folklore, these stories remind us of the complex tapestry of history and the lingering spirits that may still inhabit these ancient places.

While skeptics may dismiss these tales as mere superstition or fiction, there is no denying the eerie atmosphere and unexplained phenomena that some have experienced in these locations. Whether it’s the chilling sensation of being watched in Kirchlengern Forest or the spectral lights and echoing screams near Die Karlsteine, there is an undeniable presence that lingers.

As modern society moves forward, these stories serve as a reminder of the ancient traditions and beliefs that once held sway in these lands. They remind us that beneath the surface of our sanitized and predictable world, there are still mysteries waiting to be uncovered.

So, whether you are a believer in the supernatural or a skeptic in search of a good ghost story, the haunted legacy of Die Karlsteine and Kirchlengern Forest invites you to explore the dark corners of history and delve into the depths of the unknown. Just be prepared for what you might encounter as you step into the realm of mystery and embark on your own paranormal adventure.

Safe travels and may you find both answers and questions in your quest to uncover the enigmatic tales of Die Karlsteine and Kirchlengern Forest.

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