variants: or Ankou
Definition of ankou
: death personified as a skeleton with a scythe or spear especially in the mythology of Brittany, France Ankou is the figure in Breton myth who collects spirits of the dead and brings them to hell.— Miriam Van Scott, Encyclopedia of Hell, 1998 —often used with the Legend has it that whenever a cemetery was started, some poor, unfortunate slob was buried alive to create the ankou. — The Orlando (Florida) Sentinel, 28 Oct. 1993… serpents, demons and omens of death including the ankou. — David Powell, The Daily Post (Liverpool, England), 11 Apr. 2005
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