While some people claim that spontaneous human combustion is only a regular fire for which the cause is unknown or one that could have been prevented using basic fire safety, some others say that it’s an odd shift of our inner chemistry and can occur to anyone anytime.
Here are ten real-life cases of spontaneous human combustion for you to form your own opinion.
10. The Newest Case
The first Irish case of spontaneous human combustion is the most recent case. The burnt body of an elderly man with his head-side toward the furnace was found by people in the man’s apartment.
However, it was determined that the furnace wasn’t what caused the fire nor did the body have any and there was zero evidence of foul play.
9. The Earliest Case
Polonus Vorstius is the earliest i.e. first mention of spontaneous human combustion in the history that occurred in the late 1400s. Polonus was just a common man in Italy who liked wine, women, and music. He devoured two ladles of extremely strong wine one night and it is thought to have opposed him.
Witnesses say that he vomited flame and then the flames engulfed him entirely.
8. The Horrible Details
Countess Cornelia Di Bandi fell prey to the unforgiving flames in a case of spontaneous human combustion. One morning in the 1700s, she was found dangling half way between her bed and all her body except the lower legs and three fingers, was burnt. It seemed as if she had risen calmly to open the window and combusted before she could reach there.
7. Two Disappearances
Ginette Kazmierczak, a woman who lived with her husband and son in France reported the authorities about her husband who had gone missing one morning. There was no clue and a few days later, a neighbor found Ginette’s body reduced to ashes fully except the legs.
6. The Fire Inside
A passenger on a bus witnessed blue flames in an apartment buildings’ window in 1967. Mistaking it for a gas jet, she called the fire brigade. Upon reaching the location, they found the body of a homeless man named Robert Francis Bailey.
A fireman said they saw a cut in the man’s abdomen from which blue flames were emitting.
5. Spontaneous Combustion Won A Court Case
In 1725, when the entire inn smelled like smoke, the husband of Nicole Millet and the innkeeper found the remains of his wife’s body in the kitchen with the wooden utensils around her unharmed. This put people in a suspicion and resulted in Nicole’s husband to be accused of murder.
However, he justified the case using ‘spontaneous human combustion’, and was acquitted.
4. The Shrunk Skull
A landlady was taking a stroll in her apartment building in St. Petersburg, Florida when she observed an incredibly hot doorknob. Mary Reeser, the tenant, did not respond to the calls and so the landlady summoned people to open the door.
Upon opening, they didn’t find Reeser but her remains in the center of a six-foot burnt area of carpet. The body was all ashes except for the skull and a completely undamaged foot. It is said that the skull had shrunk down to the size of a cup.
3. The Lost Lawsuit of Spontaneous Combustion
Hospitalized for severe burns, Jack Angel filed a lawsuit against the maker of his water. He claimed that while he was checking the heater, it blew and burnt him. But things changed when a doctor found out that he had inside-out burns and not outside-in.
Soon after, Angel changed the story and told that he fell asleep and woke up with severe burns all over his body. He was probably the only one who survived a spontaneous combustion.
2. The Twilight Zone
While watching an episode of The Twilight Zone in Crown Point, New York, a gentleman suffered spontaneous combustion. Nobody knows which episode of The Twilight Zone he was watching.
1. The ONLY Witnessed Case
This is the only spontaneous combustion case with a witness. The father of a mentally-ill saw a flash out of the corner of his eye and looked in the direction only to find his daughter on fire. Despite, she sat quietly in a chair with no pain and not reacting at all.
While her father’s hand burnt trying to save the woman, the woman lived through the combustion. However, she slipped into a coma right after the incident and passed away shortly afterward. This is one of the strangest incidents of human combustion.
In almost all human combustions, there are no burns in the space around the burnt person signifying that the person was just confined in one place. Whatever the cause or scenario, spontaneous combustions will always leave people guessing.