A name which the German people gave to a certain kind of nightmare. This bad dream generally involves a demon suffocating a person in his sleep.
The French peasantry called this dream “Dianus” and believed it related to a reference in the 91st Psalm that this was “the destruction that wasteth at noon-day” as it was suppose to strike people who were most vulnerable to its attacks at that time of day. The suffocation occurred by a hard pressing on the chest that would prevent the proper functioning of the lungs.
Also, it was thought this kind of nightmare was related to a belief in an Incubus, a demon that has sex with humans in their sleep. A.G.H.