In Zimbabwe, mourners attending a funeral recently were stunned when the "dead" man came back to life. According to a story in the Daily Telegraph, "Family and friends were filing past a coffin with the remains of Brighton Dama Zanthe, 34, when one of them noticed the dead man's legs twitching.
"I was the first to notice Zanthe's moving legs as I was in the queue to view his body," said one of the mourners, Lot Gaka, who employs the man at his transport company. "This shocked me. We called an ambulance immediately. It's a miracle and people are still in disbelief."
PHOTOS: Patenting Death
It's fortunate that Zanthe recovered in time, though not quite a miracle. Stories of people assumed dead but waking up just before burial are weird, but are more common than most people think - especially in Third World countries where modern medical treatment is rare, and confirming death may sometimes be little more than guesswork.
Consciousness does not suddenly stop when the heart stops beating, and people who appear dead in some cases may not be. Cases of people who were presumed dead but woke up shortly before burial - or, in some horrific cases, shortly after burial - have been around for millennia, and may have contributed to belief in vampires and zombies.