Historical literature,: 'Bram Stoker and the origins of Dracula'

Door San Daniel gepubliceerd in Verhalen en Poëzie


Depicted the code of arms of the countess Elizabeth Báthory from Transylvania

'Abraham Stoker was born on November 8, 1847 Dublin, Ireland. He was inextricably linked to the theater of Henry Irving and was director of the Lyceum theater in London that was owned by the same Henry Irving. he debuted with the novel, 'the primrose path' in 1875 and wrote another 15 novels and some collections of short works. The work that made him known was the founder of a new genre, the gothic or the horror novel, "Dracula." The story of a count who turns into a vampire. The story came out in 1897, when Stoker was 50 years old and matured in his ideas. The story is set in Transylvania, the Balkans, present-day Romania, bordering and overflowing (formerly) in Hungary. Transylvania is first named in this way in an old Latin document from 1075 as ultra silvam, meaning far away from civilization. This document refers to the legends about the undead in this region.

Those who were identified as undead were buried in undiscovered soil, a wooden stake driven through their chest and heart  so that they lay nailed to the grave and could not go wandering at night. Anchored as it were. Special facts that Stoker, who was a beloved student of Historical literature, must have known. The belief in these undead in these regions must have been deeply rooted, since many excavations with a stake were found in the skeleton.

His friendship with Irving gave him access to the highest literary circles in London. He knew and was friends with Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (writer of Sherlock Holmes) and James Whistler. He was at home in the 'white house' due to Irving's actions and knew the presidents Willam Mckinley and Theodore Roosevelt personally. He was a world traveler who was inspired by conversations with his fellow writers and what he observed abroad.'

The bloodthirsty nobles of the Balkans from Ultra Silvam.



'Elizabeth Báthory was born on August 7, 1560 in Nyírbátor in the northeast of present-day Romania / Hungary and came from a powerful and wealthy family. Her parents were very influential in Transylvania.

Not much is known about Elizabeth's childhood. Elizabeth regularly struggled with violent seizures of epilepsy, just like her father. She also suffered from extreme tantrums. Researchers suspect that these "defects" were related to inbreeding, which was more common in the Balkan aristocratic circles.

In 1574, Elizabeth gave birth to an illegitimate child, Anastasia, whom she had after an affair with a farm boy, and the baby was given up immediately after the birth. She had been engaged for three years to count Ferenc Nádašdy (ca.1555-1604), - she was fourteen - and she married this man, 4500 guests attended the wedding party, indicating the wealth of Nádašdy. "




                                        Painting depicting Elizabeth Báthory.

'Nádašdy was an army commander and later distinguished himself as a war hero. He taught his wife how to torture people as sadistically as possible. Both spouses passionately enjoyed torturing other people. They spent hours on torturing imprisoned enemies and coming up with new torture methods.

Elizabeth was bored during the absence of her husband, who was often on campaign. From 1585 she started torturing and killing young girls from the area with five others - three old maidens, furthermore a certain Anna Durvolya (who later became Elizabeth's lover) and a young man named János Újváry.

Elizabeth had an unhealthy obsession with the "eternal youth" phenomenon. She believed that the blood of young girls played a crucial role in combating aging processes. "If I drink girl's blood or bathe in it, I'll stay young forever," she claimed.

It started around 1585 with (whether this is a legend or not, is quite a topic of discussion) a young girl from the household who accidentally combed Elizabeth's hair too hard, so that a tuft came loose. Elizabeth beat the maid so hard that the blood spattered from her face and hit Elizabeth's hand. Elizabeth immediately felt that her skin looked younger. Psychologically disturbed as she was, she ordered the girl to be cut open and to collect the blood in a bath. Then she sat down in this "blood bath", convinced that she would stay young because of this. "

"Elizabeth and her five henchmen killed from that moment, over a period of twenty-five years (from 1585 to 1609), about 650 young ladies in the most horrible ways. Elizabeth 'needed' their blood to stay young. Approximately 600 of them were killed, if one counts the bodies found, but on the basis of missing persons and explanations a number between 600 and 2000 girls is more likely.



With the death of her husband in 1604, Elizabeth acquired an enormous territory in Central Romania. The first action after the death of her husband was the exile of her mother-in-law Ursula, with whom had a bad connection. For another five years, Elizabeth's death squad would continue to kill young girls.

Elizabeth sex partner, Anna Durvolya, died in 1609. The empty space was now filled by Erszi Majorova, who gave Elizabeth the silly advice to kill not only maids and peasant daughters, but also daughters of the nobility. The rumors that Báthory was behind the long series of disappearances, which now also spread to the nobility, increased daily until they reached the court.

On December 26, 1609 or 1610 (the year is uncertain), Count György Thurzó (1567-1616), commissioned by the Hungarian King Matthias II (1557-1619), paid a surprise visit to Elizabeth's castle Čachtice. He arrived at just the right moment: Elizabeth was just conducting a torture session with young girls. In addition to severely injured and half-dead girls, a total of around 50 bodies were found in several places in the castle. '



methods of torture:

There was a certain madness at the root of the described statements regarding the torture or murder of the young girls.

"The pointed cage
One of the cruelest methods of execution was the small steel cage. The cage was too low to stand and too narrow to sit. There were nails and knives on all sides of the cage. They put a young girl in this, between the ages of eleven and fourteen. The box was pulled up and kept suspended. One of the "ladies" then started working on the poor girl with a burning hot poker. The recoiling victim then cut himself on the nails and knives. After this torture session, the only man in the company, Fickó, pulled the cage back and forth with a rope, so that the girl was further injured by the nails and knives. During this torture session, dressed in a white dress, Elizabeth sat down on a chair under the cage and let the girl's blood drip over her. Just until the victim died. And Elizabeth's dress blood red.

Honey snack
Young girls were put naked in the open air, covered with honey and left in the wild until they were stung by insects - think of ants, wasps and bees. Often twenty-four hours was enough to get the job done. A (self-made) variant of Elizabeth, especially useful in winter because of the reduced number of insects, was to put the naked girls in the freezing cold. Water was then poured over them until they were frozen to death.

The use of a glowing hot poker was also a popular way to torture the young girls. They then got glowing hot coins pressed on their bodies or were stabbed with the hot poker. The poker regularly disappeared in the nose or mouth of the girls, as well as in and around their genitals.

Eyewitnesses also mentioned that Elizabeth caused girls to starve. Just no more food.

Feeding on your own flesh
Some of  the girls were allowed or had to eat, but not as one might envision. One of the most horrifying methods of torture was cutting the body parts of the girls, after which the six-member death squad forced the victims to eat their own meat. This did not necessarily lead to their death, but could also be repeated over time causing week long torture.

And further methodology ...
The torture repertoire of Báthory was much more extensive. For example, she hit maids with whips with nails, or with heavy clubs. Driving spikes through the nails and then sticking the girl's hands on a table (or having them hit). One or more girls were literally dissected: first they cut off their fingers, followed by cutting the wrists. Making a death mark with sharp needles or cuts between the flesh of two fingers completes the lurid list of tortures. '

Not really a sensitive lady can be said.

"The lawsuit against Elizabeth Báthory and her henchmen took place in January 1611. More than 300 witnesses told what they had seen. Everything was recorded, so that we now know what was discussed during the trial. Because Elizabeth was of noble blood and therefore did not end up with the death penalty. The authorities locked her up for life in her own castle. They closed the exits and left only a small opening so that she could get food and drink. Three assistants of Báthory were tortured and executed, while another henchman was given life imprisonment. Elizabeth's estates were transferred to her relatives. "

Excerpts from legends from Transylvania are found in diaries of Bram Stoker, Elizabeth Báthory is mentioned there. It is not difficult to guess what his success story of 1897, Dracula, was based on.



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  1.  Belford, Barbara (2002). Bram Stoker and the Man Who Was Dracula. Cambridge, Mass.: Da Capo Press. p. 17. ISBN 0-306-81098-0.
  2.  Murray, Paul (2004). From the Shadow of Dracula: A Life of Bram Stoker. Random House. p. 11. ISBN 0224044621.
  3.  "Transylvania Society of Dracula Information". Afn.org. 1995-05-29. Retrieved2012-07-30.
  4. "Travel Advisory; Lure of Dracula In Transylvania"The New York Times. 1993-08-22."Romania Transylvania". Icromania.com. 2007-04-15. Retrieved 2012-07-30.
  5. Jump up^ Engel, Pál (2001). Realm of St. Stephen: History of Medieval Hungary, 895–1526 (International Library of Historical Studies), page 24, London: I.B. Taurus. ISBN 1-86064-061-3
  6. Countess Elizabeth Bathory – The Blood Countess." The Crime Library.
  7.  http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/1489418/Elizabeth-Bathory
  8.  Most prolific female murderer:
    The most prolific female murderer and the most prolific murderer of the western world, was Elizabeth Bathori, who practised vampirism on girls and young women. Described as the most vicious female serial killer of all time, the facts and fiction on the events that occurred behind the deaths of these young girls are blurred. Throughout the 15th century, she is alleged to have killed more than 600 virgins
  9. Ramsland, Katherine. "Lady of Blood: Countess Bathory"Crime Library
  10. Historiek: serie moordenaressen
  11. Joseph Zsuffa, Countess of the Moon (Griffin Press, 2015). Dit boek is een standaardwerk over Elizabeth Báthory, gebaseerd op veertig jaar onderzoek. 
  12. – Kimberly L. Craft, Infamous Lady. The True Story of Countess Erzsébet Báthory (CreateSpace Independent Publishing, 2009). Eveneens een standaardwerk, betrekt veel primaire bronmateriaal in de analyse, zoals 306 getuigenverslagen van de martelmethoden en allerlei persoonlijke brieven van Báthory.
09/03/2020 07:49

Reacties (4) 

15/03/2020 10:47
Great Article...There is a similarity in the story of Gilles de Rais who was a masculine counterpart. It is an interesting theory because most people think Bram Stoker got his inspiration from Vlad III, as his father had the nobility title of The Dragon or Dracul, he inherited the title as Dracula, the adding of the 'a' meaning son of, in old Romanian: Drăculea. If the story of Elizabeth Báthory and Gilles de Rais tells us anything it is that mass-murderers are of all times and both genders. In the Wallachian dialect, the region where the historical Dracula lived, Dracula is translated into ...
15/03/2020 18:34
Yes it is in the nature of the beast, I am afraid
10/03/2020 16:22
Speaking about sadistic serial killers - this must have been one of them.
10/03/2020 21:47
a complete psycho
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