There was an interesting article about vampires in Venice this week. In addition to explaining how the myths may have come about (it involves decomposing and the gases involved, as well as shroud-eating bacteria) and a recently discovered vampire corpse, it also included some interesting notes about early methods for killing vampires.
Like putting a brick in their mouths.
I personally prefer this method to the old "stake in the heart" routine. I mean, really, all that whittling and stabbing and hammering. It's a lot of work. But getting the vampire to open its mouth and then quickly inserting a brick... GENIUS! Let's be honest, whoever came up with this particular technique of vampire taming was very brave. Those priests back then were gusty. "Father, I think we dug up a vampire." "Yes, my son, let me get one of the holy bricks and we'll be on our way." YES! SHOW THEM WHO IS THE BOSS!
I suppose it's less convenient if you come across an entire colony of vampires. "My son, fetch the wheelbarrow. We're going to need more bricks."
Yet another indication that the little pig who built his house of bricks was the smartest one. Smart little pig.