Few characters have captured our imagination more than Dracula. Since he was first introduced by Bram Stoker during the late 1800’s, we can’t get enough of the hemovore and, more than a hundred years later, dressing up as Dracula for Halloween still tops the most popular Halloween costume lists.
Customers love facts and figures. Why not dress up your shop with these fast facts on bold display.
Chip Wagar, author of The Carpathian Project, shares the top five myths about Dracula.
- Dracula had to sleep in the dirt of his burial place to regain his strength and powers. Many modern depictions of vampires, such as those in the Anne Rice series or Twilight, omit this very important detail. Their vampires sleep in beautiful coffins in luxurious mansions, but this was not so in the old days. This explains why Dracula was driven out of England in the original novel and had to return to seek refuge at his castle in Transylvania. Had he been able to sleep in any old coffin, the story would have been quite different.
- Dracula was not able to disappear or become transparent. His occult ability was to make himself so tiny as to be able to seem to disappear. His tiny form was able to slip underneath a door or hide from sight if he wanted.
- Dracula was a sorcerer as well as a vampire. Dracula’s legendary powers as a sorcerer enabled him to control the weather, subordinate wild animals to his will, transform himself into a mist or fog and many things that people today think are synonymous with vampires. Vampire myth in the 17th-18th centuries depicted these creatures as rather repulsive and weak. Dracula, by contrast, was mesmerizing and powerful, steeped in sorcery by Lucifer himself.
- A vampire panic in Prussia and Austria reached a peak around the year 1755. Popular hysteria prompted frequent digging up graves, cutting off the heads of alleged vampires to the point that the Empress Maria Theresa sent her physician to investigate in 1768. When he reported that it was all based on superstition, the Empress issued an edict forbidding her subjects from digging up graves or engaging in the practice of beheading or staking the hearts of the dead.
- Dracula was killed by an American. Many people forget that the slaying of Dracula in the last pages of the book occurred on the lonely road leading to his castle while he was being transported by his bodyguards. The group of vampire hunters led by Jonathan Harker overtakes the Count’s entourage. One of their number is Quincy Morris, an American, who stabs Count Dracula in the heart with his Bowie knife and causes him to crumble into dust before Quincy himself dies of wounds from the struggle.
Chip Wagar is an authority on Eastern Europe and the Balkans. He has a Bachelor of Arts in International Affairs with a concentration in Eastern Europe and the (then) Soviet Union from George Washington University, and spent a year studying abroad at the Austro-American Institute in Vienna. His first novel, An American in Vienna, was published in 2011. He lives and practices law in New Orleans, LA.