Around 177 A.D., near what is known as south-western France, a traveling merchant sent a personal letter to his brother about his encounter with a zombie:

"He came from the woods, a man of stinking rot. His gray skin bore many wounds, from which flowed no blood. Upon seeing the screaming child, his body seemed to shake with excitement. His head turn in her direction; his mouth opened in a howling moan... Darius, the old legionary veteran, approached... pushing the terrified mother aside, he grabbed the child with one arm, and brought his gladius around with the other. The creature's head fell to his feet, and rolled downhill before the rest of his body followed... Darius insisted they wear leather coverings as they pitched the body into the fire... the head, still moving in a disgusting bite, was fed to the flames."

This passage should be taken as the typical Roman attitude toward the living dead: no fear, no superstition, just another problem requiring a practical solution. This was the last record of an attack during the Roman Empire. Subsequent outbreaks were neither combated with such efficiency nor recorded with such clarity.

The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection From the Living Dead
Max Brooks | Solanum | Zombies | Outbreaks | Recorded Attacks
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