The Basano Vase Paradox That No One Can Explain

The Basano Vase Paradox That No One Can Explain

September 13, 2019 100 By Kailee Schamberger


Made from Silver, with a weight of about 4
pounds (~2 kg), and created around the 15th Century: the vase looked like nothing special.
If you saw it somewhere in an antique store, you’d hardly give it a second glance. And
still, for such an inconspicuous object, the Basano Vase supposedly carries a horrible
curse… The vase itself is a paradox. Even though
numerous websites list it as one of the most haunted objects in history, people know almost
nothing about the vase itself or its whereabouts. However, there IS something that is known… The first mention of the vase goes back to
the 15th century. Legend has it that this piece of art was crafted in a small Italian
town to the north of Napoli. It was supposed to be a wedding gift for a beautiful young
bride delivered to her anonymously the night before the wedding. The woman believed it
was a sign of good luck, but the vase turned out to be quite the opposite. The bride never
appeared at her own wedding – she was found lying on the floor in her room, dead, the
vase clutched tightly in her cold hands. Her untimely demise was never explained. And that’s how an inexplicable chain of tragic
events got started. Not long after the incident with the bride, another family member got
hold of the Basano Vase. Unfortunately, that person didn’t have much time to enjoy the
exquisite silver jar because they passed away shortly afterwards. The vase was given to
yet another relative, but the shocking outcome didn’t change – loss struck this unfortunate
family once again. So it’s no wonder they came to believe that the reason for all these
tragic occurrences was the one thing they all had in common: the vase – it had to
be cursed! To prevent any more misfortune, whether to themselves or any other poor soul
in the future, the family decided to hide the Basano Vase away. And that’s where the story gets even more
puzzling because apparently, nobody knows for sure how, when, and where the vase was
hidden. According to some records, an enigmatic priest was the one to lock the artifact away.
Other people believe that the family simply buried the vase and tried to forget about
this nightmare. I guess we’ll never know how exactly it went down since nothing was
heard about the vase for several centuries. That is, until one fateful day in 1988, when
the cursed object reared its ugly head again, bringing along its familiar friends: mystery
and tragedy. There’s no specific location or even name,
but it’s said that a young man dug the vase up in his back yard. The details of this discovery
vary from story to story, but they say that when he picked up the silver jar, there was
a grim note warning: “Beware! This vase brings death.” Little did the man know that
these were not just empty threats. He ignored them completely and decided to sell the treasure
at an auction. I guess he needed money more than he feared old cryptic prophecies. Anyway,
the vase sold quickly at a price of 4 million Italian lire, which equaled approximately
$3,000 at the time. Its new owner was a pharmacist who, at the
moment of purchase, believed that he was a very lucky man to get such a fine piece of
art for a relatively modest sum. But the mysterious curse had already found its next victim. Only
three months later, the pharmacist fell to some mysterious ailment. His relatives sold
the vase to another unsuspecting art lover, this time a young doctor whose fate was just
the same! The next owner of the Basano Vase was an archeologist,
who bought it enthusiastically in hopes of adding it to his vast collection of precious
artifacts. Only, a mysterious illness a mere three months later would have him joining
the morbid ranks of the young 15th-century bride, her unfortunate relatives, the pharmacist,
and the doctor. And the horrific story just goes on. The vase continued to change hands,
leaving a seemingly endless trail of death in its wake. It’s unclear how many more lives
the vase claimed, but one sale seemed to put an end to it all! At first, things went as usual: the new owner
succumbed to some quick and mysterious illness after coming into possession of the vase.
But this time, their family didn’t sell it. Its horrifying reputation had finally
come to light, and no one wanted to risk their life to obtain something that dangerous. Seems
like a repetition of the story with the bride, but here’s where it takes an unexpected
turn: the last victim’s relative was so eager to get rid of the vase and break the curse
that they just chucked the thing out the window! So, it shattered on the ground and the curse
was broken forever, right? Oh, you should know better by now! (Plus, it was made of
silver, mind you!) Sure, the family didn’t have any more losses, but the vase almost
hit a police officer on the head as it flew from the window! The man picked it up and
entered the house to return it to the family and issue a fine for littering. The family
happily paid the fine but refused to take their “litter” back. So, the police did what anyone else would:
they offered it to a museum. But the vase’s reputation was already well known, so no museum
would take it. Imagine, this is a 15th-century artifact full of history (and, yeah, mysterious
tragedy) that could pull in all kinds of curious tourists and really add to any museum’s
vast collection of ancient trinkets and exhibits…yet no institution wanted anything to do with
it! In any case, after museums refused to take
the vase, it’s said that the police got rid of it. But again, opinions differ and the
details are unclear. Some people are sure that one police officer buried the cursed
jar, having locked it in a lead box, in some remote location. Others state that the vase
was hidden in a cemetery. And that seems to be the end of this evil vase. But besides tragedy, the Basano Vase also
left tons of unanswered questions in its wake, which kinda makes the whole legend a little
questionable. First of all, it’s nearly impossible to identify all the people involved
or verify the exact locations. To add to that, there’s only one photo of the cursed object,
despite all the different people and tales connected to it. Even now, many sources mention
the Basano Vase among the most famous cursed objects – if it’s so famous and had managed
to scare so many people and even museums, why are the details so fuzzy? Any sources
you find have the same vague descriptions of the bride, the anonymous 1988 man, pharmacist,
doctor, archeologist, police officer – all unnamed. The design of the vase itself doesn’t really
match with its origin story either. It has a rather plain design, which wasn’t the
style back in the 15th century. Vases of that time were mostly porcelain, colorful, and
adorned with all kinds of intricate details. Besides, the style and shape of the silver
jar seriously differ from those that were widespread during the Renaissance. Unlike
any other vase of the period, the artifact doesn’t have a flat bottom. It looks more
like a bottle vase with a wide opening, pottery qualities that were neither Italian nor 15th-century. And finally, how exactly did this curse work?
It obviously wasn’t anyone who simply touched the vase (remember the man who found and sold
it in 1988, the police officer who tried to return it to the family that threw it out
the window). It seemed to be just those who called it their own. Did the curse know when
a person officially “owned” it? There is one theory that the curse was “activated”
whenever the top was opened, but, again, that’s unverifiable. Plus, the one and only photo
of the vase doesn’t show a top that opens and closes, albeit the picture is blurry and
it’s hard to tell for sure. It’s obvious that there is much more to the
Basano Vase than the stories tell us. Its inexplicable origin and untimely demise of
those who owned the object look like something of either sheer coincidence or pure legend.
But researchers do take the whole ordeal seriously enough to investigate and try to find more
information about the perplexing artifact. But until then, it seems the Basano Vase still
remains an unsolved mystery that leaves us with more questions than answers! Or perhaps, The Basano Vase was simply a crock
of… “something else”. Do you believe that the Basano Vase was cursed?
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