Netflix launched its original fantasy drama, with Henry Cavill at the centre, in December 2019. The first season has already revealed some of the mythical creatures in ‘The Witcher’ universe and the Striga is one of them. What is Striga? Let’s find out!
Season 1 of ‘The Witcher’ focuses mainly on what leading the life of a Witcher means. It means slaying scary monsters left and right. One of the monsters that the first season of ‘The Witcher‘ introduced to us was a Striga. The third episode of Netflix‘s The Witcher season 1 had Henry Cavill’s Geralt fight a deadly Striga in an intense nail-biting sequence. Here is all the nitty-gritty stuff you need to know about a Striga.
- What is a Striga?
- Adda the White cursed to be a Striga
- Can the curse be reversed?
What is a Striga?
Perceived by common knowledge, a Striga is a woman who has been cursed to transform into a monster at the night. As ‘The Witcher’ tells it, the curse could also fall upon a corpse, since the Striga that Geralt fights in the series had taken the curse from her dead mother’s womb. Gigantic mythical creatures, Strigas are ghastly disfigured and lopsided. Geralt described the Striga that he had battled against as having a short neck with an unnaturally large head. He also mentioned that it had “tangled, curly halo of reddish hair”. They are known to have huge, serrated, and pointy set of teeth in its jaw as well as long talons capable of splitting away a chunk of flesh in just one go.
Like most other mythical creatures, the Striga gets its nourishment from everything human. She feels immense hatred for all living things and devours and destroys everyone that comes in its way. A Striga appears only on a full moon night when it hunts down it preys, fighting with great strength and speed.
Adda the White cursed to be a Striga
Episode 3 “Betrayer Moon” of ‘The Witcher’ Season 1 finds Geralt of Rivia tasked with lifting off the Striga curse of a princess, Adda the White. Adda the White was born as a Striga to Temeria’s king, Foltest. Jealous of the incestuous relationship between Foltest and his sister (Adda’s mother), Ostrit, a man who loved Adda’s mother, tried to cast a curse on Foltest. Contrary to the intention, Adda’s mother died, which resulted in Adda being born as a Striga. Adda the Striga terrorized Foltest’s subjects for years until Geralt of Rivia, the Witcher, cured her.
Adda rose out of her tomb as a Striga on the final night as Geralt kept Ostrit tied to a bed. Adda, having taken the complete form of the Striga, killed Ostrit first and attacked Geralt next. What followed was an intense fight between the Witcher and the Striga. Geralt tried to bind Adda in silver chains, but she broke free. Geralt managed to knock the Striga out of consciousness and while she was out, Geralt placed a magical barrier at the entrance that would prevent her from leaving the spot. On realising that the sun was rising, both Geralt and the Striga make a run for the tomb but Geralt reaches first and locks himself inside. With the sun completely out, as Adda transformed back from a Striga into a little girl, Geralt approaches her gradually to ensure her complete transformation. However, an anxious Adda, in pain, gashes at Geralt’s throat with her claws and the Witcher bites her neck before passing out.
Can the curse be reversed?
According to ‘The Witcher’, the Striga curse could be lifted, although the process is deadly and dangerous for anyone who dares to attempt it. People falsely believed that the curse could be lifted by spending the night with the Striga, but that just meant more and better food for the monster. The actual way of reversing the Striga curse is to keep the monster away from its crypt until the sun comes out and “the cock crows for the third time”.
However, that does not mark the end of the process. Even if the curse is reversed, chances are that the person might not return back to her normal state completely. Some people never get past the trauma mentally for their entire life. The damages done to the person’s personality are severe and some might even retain some of the traits of the Striga, especially if they fall upon the curse as a child. Measures to prevent the survivor from turning back into a Striga also seem imminent. For instance, Geralt mentioned that a survivor must wear a sapphire bound in a silver chain since silver is the metal that repulses the monsters in ‘The Witcher’. He even says that an “Inclusion” formed out of trapping air inside a sapphire could do the trick as well. Moreover, burning Broom, Aspen, and Juniper in the fireplace could also be another precaution according to Geralt. However, if the girl dies, Geralt says it’s better to burn the body before the nightmare begins all over again.
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