Most of us are familiar with the grisly story of Sweeney Todd, otherwise known as “the Demon Barber of Fleet Street.”
This murderous character killed his victims by luring them into his barbershop and slitting their throats as they sat in his chair. He then pulled a lever that dropped them down through a trap door into his basement. After they were dead, he cut up their bodies with the help of Mrs. Lovett, the pie shop owner next door. That’s when the devious pair turned their victims into meat pies to sell to unwitting customers.
Up until now, it’s been assumed that this story is entirely fictional, but what if I told you that it might have been inspired by real events?
In the story, the infamous pie shop was located on Fleet Street in London.
But in the 14th century, the Rue des Marmousets bakery was actually located in France near the Notre Dame Cathedral, a popular tourist area.
And it sat right next door to — you guessed it — a barbershop.
Like Sweeney Todd’s character, the resident barber lured foreigners inside with promises of a close shave.
While they waited in the chair, he slit their throats and took them into his basement, where he and the baker ground their flesh and used it to make meat pies. Sounds familiar.
They kept this up for three years, until a dog was found barking outside of the barbershop. It refused to leave that spot for three days.
The dog belonged to one of their victims, who they mistakenly thought wouldn’t be missed.
But the man hadn’t traveled to Paris alone, and when his wife found their dog barking and suspected that it had something to do with his disappearance, she called the police. They later found a pile of human bones in the basement.
As punishment for their horrific crimes, the killers were burned to death.
Their shops were torn down, so nothing remained to prove that these events were real, except for a bronze statue of the dog that blew their cover.
(via All Day)
Well, there goes any sense of comfort we once had about these monsters only existing in plays and movies.