Types of Ghost

The following list of words are not different types of ghost but all have the meaning of ghost.

Words that all mean 'ghost'
  • apparition
  • boggart
  • disembodied spirit
  • ghost
  • phantasm
  • phantom
  • shade
  • spectre (specter)
  • spirit
  • spook
  • visitant
  • wraith

However, there are phenomena that people associate with several different types of ghost and it is these that I will consider here.

(Click on the 'Quick Link' to go there directly)

Quick Links: Banshee, Cold Spot, Crisis Apparition, Deathbed Vision, Demon, Doppelgänger, Electronic Voice Phenomena, Fetch, Poltergeist, Spirit Orb, Spirit Voice, Thought Form

The banshee is not a ghost. She is a 'female spirit', associated with certain Irish families. When the sound of her 'wailing mourning' or 'keening' is heard, it is a sure sign that someone within the family is not long for this world.

Cold Spot
Personally, once natural causes have been excluded, I would consider 'cold spots' to be one of the genuine types of ghost.
I should explain that they are not small, flat or static as the name would suggest. They are like three-dimensional columns of cold air that move around certain haunted buildings.
I experienced one once, at Athelhampton Hall and it was very strange.

Crisis Apparition
Very similar to a fetch, a crisis apparition is the appearance to their loved one or friend of a person at a time when they are in great peril. It will be dressed in the same clothes that the person the apparition represents is wearing and will sometimes appear to speak.
Some investigators believe that crisis apparitions are not genuine types of ghosts as they are not actually present. They believe that the vision is as a result of telepathy between the two people involved.

Deathbed Vision
The appearance to the dying of dead friends and relatives. About half of those people who are conscious in the final minutes before death will have this comforting experience of seeing a vision of departed friends or loved-ones coming to 'take them home'.
These visions do not appear to be illusion. People have been surprised to see the 'ghost' of those whom they assumed to still be 'in the flesh'. And dying children who experience them, often express surprise that the 'angels' don't have wings!

A German word meaning, 'double goer'. It refers to an identical image a person sees of themselves. It is usually considered for the person who sees it, to be a harbinger of ill omen if not of their imminent death.

Electronic Voice Phenomena>
Also known as EVP or 'Spirit Voices', these are the unexplained faint sounds of human voices that can sometimes be heard on both digital and tape recordings. Occasionally, the voices appear in answer to questions that are put to the apparent discarnate entities by paranormal investigators.

A fetch may sometimes be a crisis apparition if the person seen is experiencing great mental distress. It is the image of a person who is dying or who has recently died that appears to the friend or relative of the deceased. The fetch is not that rare an occurrence. However much more common is for a person to 'know' for certain that someone with whom they are close has 'passed on'.

Poltergeist is another German word and means 'noisy spirit'. They are thought not to be spirits at all but rather some form of energy very often connected with an adolescent or with someone going through an emotionally trying time. Poltergeists, like the Enfield Poltergeist can be mischievous, disruptive and and destructive but they very rarely hurt anyone. Minor poltergeist activity is quite common but fortunately, the activity doesn't usually last more than a few weeks.

Spirit Orb
With the arrival of the digital camera came 'the orbs' that look like small circles of light on the photographs. Probably 99% of the images have a perfectly natural explanation, such as dust, pollen, moisture, lens reflection, etc. However, there are those that cannot be explained in this way. Those that appear 'from no-where' at the request of the photographer or that remain in the same place for minutes at a time.
Some say that they are the spirits of the departed. Others that they are the spiritual equivalent of 'dung beetles' feeding off waste 'etheric energy'.

Spirit Voices
See the entry under EVP

Thought Form
This phenomena we considered in the Thought Form section of the page What are Ghosts.

There are other types of ghost that people talk about. But I think that this is sufficient for the present.

Return from Types of Ghosts to All About Ghosts
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