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Urban Legends

Côco the ghastly goon spirit

Côco the ghostly spirit

From a piece of urban folklore, comes the tale about a pumpkin headed spirit, tormenting young children. This fabled ghostly creature, is comparable to that of the bogeyman. (Also spelled bogieman or boogie man) This entity is known in many cultures to be both menacing and dangerous, frightening little children along the way.

The origin of this urban legend, stems from the country of Portugal. In Portuguese, the term “Côco” refers to a ghost with a pumpkin head. This ghostly spirit, quite often will sit high above different rooftops often observing children who appear to be troublemakers.


When Côco spots a child behaving this way, it would swoop down to eat them. Often parents would make up and sing rhymes to warn their children about Côco. This gimmick seemed to work on some children, as they would obey their parents (so that they wouldn’t be eaten). Côco would be considered that of a mythical ghost type monster.

Stack of pumpkins

It is believed that Côco can also shape shift into other forms. Some believe, that unsuspecting children might happen by a stack of carved pumpkins. They have no idea whether or not Côco is there waiting in disguise.

Some people also believe, that Côco is rather hairy type monster covering itself with clothes of a man to appear more normal looking. Also, something interesting is that Côco may transform into a feminine version known as Côca. The appearance however, makes it near impossible to differentiate between the two.

Côco the sinister ghostly spirit

Parents are to blame for the invocation of Côco. It was summoned from the underworld, as punishment for bad behaving children. Perhaps some sort of satanic type rituals were used to bring this wretched spirit across. While the physical appearance of Côco is quite frightful, children feared being eaten even more.

As imagined, children would be scared out of their wits—over the idea of this abomination. Some thought that Côco would simply devour them whole, leaving no trace of them behind. Fearing the worst, some of these children’s parents would sing a lullabies trying to get them asleep, as they imagined this monster ready to devour them.

El Côco (also El Cuco and Cucuy, sometimes called El Bolo) is a frightful monster common to many Spanish-speaking countries and has since become a part of their legends and lore.

Duermete niño, duermete ya…que viene el cuco y te comerá (sleep child, sleep now…or else comes the Côco to eat you).

Sweet dreams to all and to all a good night!

(Source: The Paranormal Guide)

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