(Horror of Dracula)
Director: Terence Fisher
Production: Hammer; Eastmancolor; running time: 82 minutes. Released May 1958.
Producer: Anthony Hinds; screenplay: Jimmy Sangster, from the novel by Bram Stoker; photography: Jack Asher; camera operator: Len Harris; editors: James Needs, Bill Lenny; sound: Jock May; art director: Bernard Robinson; music: James Bernard.
Cast: Peter Cushing (Dr. Van Helsing); Christopher Lee (Count Dracula); Michael Gough (Arthur); Melissa Stribling (Mina); Carol Marsh (Lucy); Olga Dickie (Gerda); John Van Eyssen (Jonathan); Valerie Gaunt (Vampire Woman).
Sangster, Jimmy, Dracula, in Avant-Scène du Cinéma (Paris), July-September 1975.
Pirie, David, Heritage of Horror: The English Gothic Cinema 1946–1972, London, 1973.
Eyles, Allen, Robert Adkinson, and Nicholas Fry, The House of Horror: The Story of Hammer Films, London, 1973; revised edition, 1981.
Glut, Donald F., The Dracula Book, Metuchen, New Jersey, 1975.
Rohle, Jr., Robert W., and Douglas C. Hart, The Films of Christopher Lee, Metuchen, New Jersey, 1983.
Variety (New York), 7 May 1958.
Motion Picture Herald (New York), 10 May 1958.
Today's Cinema (London), 19 May 1958.
Kine Weekly (London), 22 May 1958.
Monthly Film Bulletin (London), July 1958.
Huss, Roy, "Vampire's Progress: Dracula from Novel to Film via Broadway," in Focus on the Horror Film, edited by Huss and T. J. Ross, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, 1972.
Photon, no. 27, 1976.
Schneider, M., "Hammer Horrors: The Dracula Films of Christopher Lee," in Monsterscene (Lombard), no. 3, Fall 1994.
Ray, F.O., "The Hammer Factory," in Midnight Marquee (Baltimore), no. 47, Summer 1994.
Brunas, M., in Midnight Marquee (Baltimore), no. 49, Summer 1995.
Fischer, D., "Colossus/Silent Running," in Cinefantastique (Forest Park), no. 8, 1997.
Thornton, S., "Barbara Shelley," in Midnight Marquee (Baltimore), no. 54, Summer 1997.
* * *
Many consider Terence Fisher's Dracula to be the director's finest film. It is certainly Fisher's most visible work, but it is unfortunate that its fame obscures the many other excellent films which he created in his lifetime. It does seem that in reviving the Gothic tradition in Britain, Fisher found a comfortable niche for himself with both the public and Hammer. Dracula (1958) is just one of a series of excellent Gothic romances Fisher made during Hammer's "Golden Age" (roughly 1957–65). As late as 1967, Fisher showed that he was capable of first-rate work with The Devil Rides Out. There is no question that he was the finest director working for Hammer during this period, but there is also no question that his current high critical reputation has been long in coming. The reason for this is simple: horror films have always been considered on the fringe of respectable cinematic discourse, because they push the limits of graphic representation.
When Dracula first appeared, the reviews in the popular press were almost uniformly negative, despite the great popular acclaim the film received. Hammer, for their part, did little to discourage any sort of publicity, and took the bad reviews in stride. As long as the film made money, Hammer was satisfied. Fisher's earlier films for Rank were simply ignored, and he was considered by most to be simply a commercial director with no personal investment in the films he created. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Dracula is more than a stylish, rapidly paced redaction of Bram Stoker's novel; it is a film which explores and explodes the surface of Victorian society, using Dracula as a metaphor for the release of sexual urges which had long been repressed or sublimated. Dracula is also seen by Fisher as a parable of righteousness against the attraction of evil; although Dracula enslaves his victims, Fisher shows that there is considerable allure in the life of the undead. Those who fall under Dracula's spell are addicted to vampirism, as one is addicted to drugs; the power of free will alone cannot save the newly recruited vampires. If Dracula is "evil incarnate," as Fisher insisted he was on several occasions, the scholar/scientist represented by Cushing's Van Helsing is at once a redemptive figure who combines in equal parts faith and knowledge, with respect for the separate powers inherent in each. Lee's Dracula is a radical departure from the role as interpreted by Bela Lugosi; for the first time, Dracula is seen as a figure of sexual magnetism, rather than a rapacious animal slavering for blood alone. Fisher's Dracula is an aristocrat first, who hides his rupture with society beneath precisely clipped speech and elegant manners. It is only the night which liberates Dracula's other personality, based entirely on need, addiction, and the use and abandonment of others as mere vessels of momentary satisfaction.
What makes Dracula all the more remarkable is the precise assurance with which Fisher handles his camera. The opening of the film, detailing Jonathan Harker's abortive trip to rid the world of Dracula, is framed within the confines of a diary narrative. Yet the device of the diary notebook is never allowed to slow down the film; rather, Harker comes face to face with castle Dracula in the first seven shots of the film, placing him in immediate jeopardy. Fisher stages Harker's entry into the castle in smooth, contemplative tracking shots, mirroring the ease with which Dracula moves about his domain. When Dracula himself does appear, in a shot which has become justly famous, he is framed in silhouette at the top of a long staircase, which he noiselessly descends. Demonstrating his characteristic economy, Fisher holds on the shot until Dracula walks directly to the camera and addresses it in the first person (the shot is from Harker's point-of-view), dominating the frame. One must remember that, after early work as a clapper boy, magazine loader, and third assistant director, Fisher spent most of his time in the cutting room, working on many of the most important British films of the early 1940s. This precision in editorial construction thus comes from a thorough understanding of the uses and abuses of camera coverage, and it comes as no surprise to learn that Fisher shot very little more than he needed, although he never story-boarded a film in the Hitchcock manner. Jack Asher's cinematography creates a world of blues, reds, and greens, which punctuate rather than dominate Fisher's compositions.
In addition, Asher's lighting locates the actors within the confines of the set as figures fixed in stygian gloom, illuminated by shafts of light from above or from the side, but never bathed in light. This makes the final sequence in the library all the more effective, as Van Hesling runs down the refectory table, rips the curtains from the window, grabs two candlesticks to form a hastily improvised cross, and, with a combination of light and faith, sends Dracula to his doom. We realize during this climactic scene that we have been living in a world of night, or twilight, a world entirely under the control of Dracula, for most of the film. It is the light we all share, and the light of faith: these forces alone will account for our salvation. Asher's gloomy, moody lighting during the main body of the film reinforces this, and works in perfect harmony with the over-dressed, claustrophobic sets of Bernard Robinson.
The role of Dracula made Christopher Lee a star, and Peter Cushing made an indelible mark as Van Helsing, but both continued to work outside the horror genre. Fisher, however, was typecast as a horror director, and a Hammer director, and made few attempts to break away from this public perception of his work. In part this was because Fisher enjoyed making Gothics; he believed in the films he made, and spent a great deal of time and care with them, within the confines of the time and budgetary constraints imposed by Hammer.
Nevertheless, Fisher's work there, using the services of Hammer's excellent technical staff and superlative stable of character and lead actors, revitalized, transformed, and re-created the horror film for an entire new generation of viewers, who enthusiastically enjoyed Fisher's work while their elders denigrated it in favor of the Universal expressionist Gothics of the 1930s and 1940s. It is now clear that Fisher was simply ahead of his time, and the degree of graphic violence which pervades his horror films was simply a response to the needs of the viewing audience for greater generic realism. Fisher's work stands as one of the signal achievements of the British cinema, and paved the way for the next cycle of horror films, which would start with George Romero's Night of the Living Dead, a film shot through with a pessimistic spirit Fisher would never have allowed to inhabit his films. Though the battle may be vigorous and hazardous in Fisher's films, good, being infinite, will inevitably triumph over the finite evil of Dracula and his minions. Some see this as a structural weakness in Fisher's vision; if so, it is a weakness shared by Britain's two greatest Gothic writers, Mary Shelley and Bram Stoker.
—Wheeler Winston Dixon
"Dracula." International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/movies/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/dracula-0
"Dracula." International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/movies/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/dracula-0
Director: Tod Browning
Production: Universal Pictures; black and white, 35mm; running time: 84 minutes, some sources list 76 minutes; length: 6978 feet. Released Valentine's Day, 1931. Re-released 1938. Filmed in Universal studios.
Producer: Carl Laemmle Jr.; screenplay: Garrett Fort, dialogue by Dudley Murphy, from Hamilton Deane's and John L. Balderston's stage adaptation of the novel by Bram Stoker; photography: Karl Freund; editor: Milton Carruth; editing supervisor: Maurice Pivar; sound: C. Roy Hunter; production designer: Charles Hall; music director: David Broekman; makeup: Jack P. Pierce.
Cast: Bela Lugosi (Count Dracula); Helen Chandler (Mina); David Manners (Jonathan Harker); Dwight Frye (Renfield); Edward Van Sloan (Professor Van Helsing); Herbert Bunston (Dr. Seward); Frances Dade (Lucy Weston); Joan Standing (Briggs); Charles Gerrard (Martin); Moon Carroll (Maid); Josephine Velez (Nurse); Donald Murphy (Man in coach); Michael Visaroff (Innkeeper).
Fort, Garrett, and others, Dracula: The Original 1931 Shooting Script, Absecon, New Jersey, 1990.
Butler, Ivan, The Horror Film, New York, 1967.
McBride, Joseph, editor, Persistence of Vision: A Collection of Film Criticism, Madison, Wisconsin, 1968.
Huss, Roy, and T. J. Ross, Focus on the Horror Film, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, 1972.
Edelson, Edward, Great Monsters of the Movies, New York, 1973.
Everson, William K., Classics of the Horror Film, Secaucus, New Jersey, 1974.
Frank, Alan G., Horror Movies, Secaucus, New Jersey, 1974.
Lamberti, Mark, Transylvanian Catalogue, Mount Vernon, New York, 1974.
Lenning, Arthur, The Count—The Life and Films of Bela "Dracula" Lugosi, New York, 1974.
Annan, David, Beyond the Dream Machine, New York, 1975.
Pattison, Barrie, The Seal of Dracula, New York, 1975.
Gifford, Denis, Monsters of the Movies, London, 1977.
Halliwell, Leslie, The Dead That Walk: Dracula, Frankenstein, the Mummy, and Other Favorite Movie Monsters, New York, 1988.
Marrero, Robert, Dracula: The Vampire Legend on Film, Key West, Florida, 1992.
Prüssmann, Karsten, Die Dracula-Filme von Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau bis Francis Ford Coppola, Munich, 1993.
Skal, David J., Dark Carnival: The Secret World of Tod Browning, Hollywood's Master of the Macabre, New York, 1995.
New York Times, 13 February 1931.
Variety (New York), 18 February 1931.
Addams, Charles, "Movie Monster Rally," in New York Times Magazine, 9 August 1953.
Geltzer, George, "Tod Browning," in Films in Review (New York), October 1953.
Everson, William K., "A Family Tree of Monsters," in Film Culture (New York), no. 1, 1955.
Gur, Roy, "The Browning Version," in Cinema (Beverly Hills), June-July 1963.
Halliwell, Leslie, "The Baron, the Count, and Their Ghoul Friends," in Films and Filming (London), June 1969.
Evans, W., "Monster Movies: A Sexual Theory," in Journal of Popular Film (Washington, D.C.), Fall 1973.
Rosenthal, Stuart, "Tod Browning," in The Hollywood Professionals 4, London, 1975.
Garsault, A., "Tod Browning: A la recherche de la réalité," in Positif (Paris), July-August 1978.
Huxner, V. I., in Magill's Survey of Cinema 1, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, 1980.
Turner, George, "The Two Faces of Dracula," in American Cinematographer (Los Angeles), May 1988.
McBride, W. T., "Dracula and Mephistopheles: Shyster Vampires," in Literature/Film Quarterly (Salisbury, Maryland), no. 2, 1990.
Thomson, David, "Really a Part of Me," in Film Comment (New York), January-February 1995.
Haas, R., "The Monster Boomer: An Interview with David J. Skal," in Post Script (Commerce), no. 3, 1996.
Holt, Wesley G., "Dracula," in Filmfax (Evanston), August-September 1996.
Ford, J.E., "Dracula," in Films of the Golden Age (Muscatine), Fall 1997.
"Dracula Revived (Restoration that Features a New Score Composed by Philip Glass)," in Stereo Review's Sound & Vision, vol. 64, no. 8, October 1999.
* * *
Like other horror films of the period (e.g., Frankenstein, 1931, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, 1932, Island of Lost Souls, 1933), Dracula is about sex—perverse and passionate—and, like those other pictures, it has a short running time for an "A" film because it suffers from self- and outside censorship; material was excised from the screenplay or the finished film because of its "questionable" aspects. This and other deficiencies dilute the movie's effectiveness for contemporary audiences.
For example, the heroine, Mina, tells Professor Van Helsing that she's seen her dead friend Lucy walking about "alive." The Professor promises that he will put Lucy to rest forever. In the novel, this leads to a harrowing scene wherein Van Helsing and Lucy's fiancé stake and behead the recently undead woman. Arthur Lennig says that Lucy "actually was dispatched by Van Helsing, but this episode, along with the others, was not in the release prints."
Later, after Mina's tearful confession, almost thrown away on the soundtrack, that Dracula opened a vein in his arm (a phallic metaphor) and made her drink, the count again visits her in her bedroom. (There's a discreet fade-out as he bends over to bite her neck; actual penetration is never shown in Dracula.) Then everybody converges upon Carfax Abbey for the finale. How they get there (and why they go there) is not shown.
After a half-dozen remakes of Dracula (none of which completely captures the excitement of the book or gets the plot right), and hundreds of other vampire films, where the sexual nature of vampirism is more explicit, it's difficult for contemporary viewers to understand the filmmakers' reticence or to feel the impact the movie had when it first opened. Universal advertised the film (released, appropriately perversely, on Valentine's Day, 1931) as "the strangest love story ever told" (partly because there was no established horror genre to exploit), and it certainly was that.
The attraction of the foreign lover is present in the vampire Count's power over women, but the sexual liberation (wantonness) vampirism inspires in his female victims is absent. His three "brides" are not the quick, alluring, dangerous creatures of the novel but staid, staring zombies. So is Lucy, in the one shot we see of her as a vampire. Only Mina is allowed a brief glimmer of desire when she eyes her fiancé's neck, but her—off-screen—coitus is interrupted by ever-vigilant Van Helsing.
The lack of a score hampers the film. It has to work harder to create mood, and often images alone aren't enough to accomplish this. The filmmakers, still laboring under the delusion that all onscreen music must spring from a "realistic" physical source, dispensed with it altogether, except over the opening and closing credits and during the famous scene in the theatre, where the lights go down as the music comes up, and Dracula makes his tragi-romantic assertion, "To die, to be really dead—that must be glorious."
Frankenstein suffers from the same deficiencies as Dracula (censorship, scorelessness) but it remains a more thrilling, fluid film. That's because Frankenstein was directed by the eccentric James Whale, whereas Dracula was directed by Tod Browning, a pedestrian director with a taste for the grotesque (no doubt because of his circus background) but no feeling for the supernatural. Except for Dracula, his films are all solidly, stolidly grounded in reality.
Given Browning's limitations and his particular cinematic bent, he really couldn't bring much to a subject like Dracula. The beginning at the Count's castle and the ending on the seemingly endless stairs of Carfax Abbey are impressive because Browning and the cinematographer Karl Freund had good sets to shoot, but neither knew what to do with the long, stagey middle section of Dracula, taken from the Balderston-Dean play. (Significantly, the effective Transylvanian opening and the theatre scene were written by the uncredited scenarist Louis Bromfield). So all that the viewer is left with is a lot of static shots, almost a series of still photos instead of a moving picture, animated only by some mellow performances and ripe language. For, despite its lack of background music, Dracula is very much a sound movie, full of memorable dialogue memorably delivered, especially by Bela Lugosi with his mellifluous accent, Edward Van Sloan with his pompous pronouncements, and Dwight Frye with his maniacal cackling. In contemporary jargon, it's a film about competing discourses, and on that rests its continuing appeal.
"Dracula." International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/movies/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/dracula
"Dracula." International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/movies/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/dracula
Fictional vampire in a book of that name by Irish author Bram Stoker (1847-1912). The Count Dracula character has become an archetype for scores of books, films, and plays on the vampire theme since first appearing in Stoker's version of May 1897.
Stoker's character was supposedly based in part on the real-life Prince Dracula (Vlad V) in fifteenth-century Wallachia, but the historical original was reportedly a sadist rather than a vampire. According to legend, during his rule one of his punishments was to impale his victims on stakes and gloat over their sufferings. Stoker wedded the image of the literary vampire developed in the stories of John Polidori and Sheridan Le Fanu with information about the medieval Romanian ruler.
Stoker possibly became aware of the real Dracula through conversations with the Hungarian scholar Arminius Vambéry and supplemented his stories with research in Whitby, York-shire, and at the British Museum Library, London. There is thus considerable authenticity in much of the background detail of Stoker's book, including vampire folklore and actual locations in Transylvania (now Romania).
Dracula was first performed as a play on May 18, 1897, at the Lyceum Theatre, London (where Stoker was manager to the actor Henry Irving), but this first production was an adapted reading for copyright purposes, lasting four hours.
In 1923 permission for a dramatization of Dracula was given by Stoker's widow to Irish actor Hamilton Deane, and this version was first produced in June 1924 at the Grand Theatre, Derby, opening in London at the Little Theatre, John Street, Adelphi, February 14, 1924.
It is believed that the first screen versions were a Russian and then a Hungarian silent film, but copies of neither have survived. However, the 1922 German film, Nosferatu, oder Eine Symphonie des Grauens (a slightly disguised Dracula made by the famous silent film director F. W. Murnau), did survive in spite of Florence Stoker's attempt to squelch it. The role of the vampire was played by Max Schreck and the film achieved a doom-laden atmosphere, chiefly through the photography of cameraman Fritz Arno Wagner. After Florence Stoker's successful prosecution for infringement of copyright, the production company went into bankruptcy, but some prints survived and have been made available for public showings.
The first official Dracula movie was made in Hollywood in 1930, directed by Tod Browning and starring Bela Lugosi in the title role. Lugosi became the most famous Dracula, appearing in many plays and films in this role. In 1972 a California court upheld the copyright of the heirs of Bela Lugosi in his own characterization of the part of Dracula. Over the years, the Dracula vampire theme has proliferated in movies all over the world, Christopher Lee and John Carradine playing the part most often. Dracula, the novel, has been brought to the screen more than a dozen times, and several hundred movies have featured the main character. In 1992, film director Francis Ford Coppola released his version of the classic entitled Bram Stroker's Dracula, with Gary Oldman in the title role supported by Anthony Hopkins and Winona Ryder. The film won Academy Awards for best costume design, makeup, sound effects, and editing.
In March 1968 the magazine Fate published an interview with Count Alexander Cepesi, who claimed to be a descendant of Vlad Dracula. Cepesi was a Romanian, living in Istanbul since 1947. He operated a blood bank and collected plasma for Turkish hospitals.
The traditional tomb of Dracula is in a monastery at Snagov, Romania. It was opened in 1931 but was found to contain only animal bones. A second grave in the same church contained a casket with a skeleton in a purple shroud embroidered with gold. However, the Weird Museum in Hollywood, California, exhibited what is claimed to be the authentic skeleton of Vlad Dracula, believed to have been removed from Bucharest.
In Britain, the Dracula Society exists to promote the study and appreciation of the work of Bram Stoker and Gothic themes in literature, theater, and film. In the Republic of Ireland, a Bram Stoker Society was formed with similar aims and fraternal association with the British Dracula Society. In the United States both the Count Dracula Fan Club and the Count Dracula Society carry on the appreciation of Dracula and his vampire cousins. Most recently, the Transylvanian Society of Dracula, headquartered in Bucharest, has brought together a worldwide network of Dracula enthusiasts.
The modern revival of interest in the undead vampire of Bram Stoker's famous novel has continued to grow through the twentieth century but has increased since the 1972 publication of a biography of the real Dracula by historians Raymond T. McNally and Radu Florescu. In May 1977, during ceremonies held in Bucharest to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Romanian independence, President Nicolae Ceausescu solemnly honored fifteenth-century warrior-prince Vlad Dracula (proto-type of Stoker's thriller) by inclusion in the nation's Hall of Fame. Prince Vlad is a tourist attraction in Romania for hundreds of foreign visitors who join the tours of sites related to both Prince Vlad and the novel's Transylvanian count. The real Dracula, Vlad Tepes or "Vlad the Impaler," killed his enemies by impaling them on sharply pointed wooden stakes. This is an inversion of the traditional method of setting a vampire to rest, as told in Dracula.
Vlad the Impaler was captured by Turks in 1476, and after decapitation his head was exhibited in Constantinople, on a stake. His status as a national hero stems from his opposition to the Turks and "love for the fatherland" as an authoritarian.
The centennial of the novel Dracula was celebrated in 1997 and Vlad Tepes is still a well-known historical figure to contemporary audiences, while the literary Dracula has become an immediately recognizable figure in popular culture. The image of Dracula regularly appears on products from greeting cards to mass media advertisements. Dracula books, comic books, movies, jewelry, dramas, candy, and toys appeal to an ever increasing audience.
Bisang, Robert Eighteen-Bisang. Dracula: A Century of Editions, Adaptations and Translations. Part One: English Language Edition. Santa Barbara: Transylvanian Society of Dracula, 1978.
Florescu, Radu & Raymond T. McNally. Dracula: A Biography of Vlad the Impaler 1391-1476. New York: Hawthorn Books, 1973.
Glut, Donald. The Dracula Book. Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 1975.
McNally, Raymond T. & Radu Florescu. In Search of Dracula: A True History of Dracula and Vampire Legends. New York: New York Graphic Society, 1972.
Melton, J. Gordon. The Vampire Book: The Encyclopedia of the Undead. Detroit: Gale Research, 1994.
Miller, Elizabeth. Dracula: Sense and Nonsense. Westcliff-on-Sea, UK: Desert Island Books, 1998.
——. Reflection on Dracula: Ten Essays, White Rock, BC: Transylvanian Press, 1997.
Shepard, Leslie, and Albert Powers, eds. Dracula: Celebrating 100 Years. Dublin, Ireland: Mentor Press, 1997.
Summers, Montague. The Vampire: His Kith and Kin. Reprint, London: Routledge, Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner, 1928. Re-print, New Hyde Park, N.Y.: University Books, 1960.
——. The Vampire in Europe. London: Routledge, Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner, 1929. Reprint, New Hyde Park, N.Y.: University Books, 1966.
Wolf, Leonard. The Annotated Dracula. New York: Clarkson N. Potter, 1975.
"Dracula." Encyclopedia of Occultism and Parapsychology. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/dracula
"Dracula." Encyclopedia of Occultism and Parapsychology. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/dracula
In the history and legend of eastern Europe, Dracula was the popular name of Vlad the Impaler, a merciless Romanian tyrant of the 1400s. Dracula means "heir of the Order of the Dragon," dedicated to fighting the Turks. However, in the worlds of fiction and film, the name Dracula has been associated with Count Dracula, the vampire. He was the main character in an 1897 novel by the British author Bram Stoker.
Vlad the Impaler. The historical Vlad the Impaler, or Vlad Tepeş, was prince of Walachia (near Transylvania) and lived from 1431 to 1476. The tales told about him were filled with horror and cruelty Fond of dining outdoors, Vlad would have his enemies impaled on stakes around the dinner table so that he could listen to them scream as he ate. Once a group of Turkish envoys who came before him refused to remove their turbans. Vlad ordered that the turbans be nailed to their heads. In another story, Vlad told some guests that if they wished, he could put an end to their troubles. They said yes, whereupon he had them locked in a room and burned alive.
Bram Stoker's Dracula. The legends of Vlad the Impaler's inhuman behavior may have contributed to an association of Dracula with vampires, corpses that rise from the grave during the night to drink the blood of humans. However, it was Stoker's novel that forever linked the name Dracula with the "undead" bloodsucking creatures of the grave.
In Stoker's book, Count Dracula is a centuries-old vampire of Transylvania, a region in central Romania. During the day, he rests in his coffin, but at night, he rises to feast on human blood. The people he bites turn into vampires themselves. Dracula continues to claim victims until his pursuers succeed in driving a stake through his heart, finally ending his reign of terror.
Stoker's novel became the best-known vampire tale of all time. Produced as a play in 1927, the story was the basis of many movies, starting with the famous 1922 silent film Nosferatu. The classic motion picture version of Stoker's story, made in 1931, won international fame for the actor Bela Lugosi, who starred as the black-cloaked Count Dracula. This film established a pattern for vampire-based horror movies that continues to this day.
See also Vampires.
"Dracula." Myths and Legends of the World. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/dracula
"Dracula." Myths and Legends of the World. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/dracula
"Dracula." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/dracula
"Dracula." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/dracula
"Dracula." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/dracula
"Dracula." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/dracula
"Dracula." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/dracula-0
"Dracula." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/dracula-0