By Damaris Cabrera-Lorenzo
People around the world are familiar with ghosts, monsters or supernatural creatures. Hearing a horrific story of a ghost who takes away children's who are disobedient sounds scary. This myth is described as a man figure ghost that has the face of a coconut with red eyes and large ears. According to Roberto Bitto from an article called “Mexican unexplained” there was a family of five, mom, dad and 3 daughters. These girls wouldn’t help their mother in the kitchen and would ignore her a lot. When the father tells his youngest one to help around the house, she would ignore him. The same thing happened to the other two. There was a point where his father had enough because his girls were becoming the most disobedient children's from the smallest town of Mexico. His father told them if they didn’t listen, El Cucuy will come and get them and make them disappear. The girls didn’t believe him till one day,they two older girls went a little far from home, he came, snatched them and took went to this high mountain. They were terrified and screaming for help till a goatherd heard the girls and rescued them. Since then, the girls became one of the most obedient children's in the small village of Mexico. The story behind El Cucuy all came from a children’s book by Joe Hayes.
El Cuco originated in Northern Portugal and Galicia. It is a Mexican version of the Bogeyman. The bogeyman has no face and is used to scare children's, so that they can behave and straighten them up. Not only does he take away kids who don’t obey but he punishes them too and is found in many cultures around the world. As we can see, it is why they called it the Mexican Bogey-man because this creature was told in Mexico from a Spanish version.
|Plate 3 from Los Caprichos. “Here comes the bogey-man(que viene el Coco), 1799|
The creature's origin all started in Celtic Europe. Some believe that it is real, but the main purpose of this legend is to scare young children's into obeying their parents and show them respect. Once this story was told, it started to spread quickly around the world and was used for good purposes even though this creature may not seem real. In other countries it’s called and described differently for example in Mexico, it goes by El Cucuy. El Cuco, El Coco, El Cucu are all the same and some are described as a man ghost with a skull, mask, or jack-o-Lanter head but they all have the same purpose.
This story is a traditional story told to generation to the next and is still an important legend that is celebrated in Europe as “Procissão dos Passos” says Roberto. It is where it got its name “Coco” because in Europe it was “El Coca” meaning coconut. A movie was even made in 2018 called El cucuy and it all originates from the folk tale known more in Mexico
CUCUY: The boogeyman Official trailer.
Bitto, Roberto. “Mexican Unexplained” El Cucuy. 25 Sept. 2017.
hash=ff1215bbeb7f4ac1be4659ff2d2f3170#comment-522Accessed 18 Oct. 2021.
Snarled. “Cucuy: The Boogeyman official trailer”. Youtube, 7 Oct, 2018
Ray De La Crux, Rene. “Hispanic Folklore keeps childrens in check” 29 Oct. 2019.
https://www.vvdailypress.com/article/20151029/NEWS/151029669 Accessed 26 Oct 2021.
Image from google. 2018.
https://cdn-0.mexicounexplained.com//wp-content/uploads/2017/09/cucuy10.jpg caption: El
Alicia. “¡El Cucuy! Read aloud(In English)”. Youtube 7 July 2021.
For further references
Bitto, Roberto. “El Cucuy, the mexican Bogeyman.” El Coco. Sept 25 2017. https://
mexicounexplained.com/el-cucuy-mexican-bogeyman/. Accessed Oct 18. 2021.