Share this!


draculaWhen you think of Dracula what do you picture; a demonic monster out for the blood of any nubile young virgin he can find? Or maybe a misunderstood and broody hunk with some unfortunate dietary requirements and a six pack? I suppose it all depends on what books you read and what programmes you watch. But who was the real Dracula, the poor tortured misunderstood man looking for love or the sadistic monster? I decided to do some digging (aka googling) and find out.

So here are the basics:
Name: Vlad III, Prince of Wallachia
Born: 1431 died 1476/77
Family: Two older half brothers called Mircea and Vlad, younger brother called Radu the Handsome. Father, Vlad II, a member of the Order of the Dragon, which was created to protect Christianity in Eastern Europe

So, where did Vlad’s two most popular names come from? Dracul and Vlad Tepes. Dracula translates to “Son of the Dragon” rather than the any other devilish meanings and he was named so as his father was a member of the Order of the Dragon, and far from meaning devil was actually a Christian Order. It was only after death that he was really known as Vlad Tepes, which translates to Vlad the Impaler, named thus for his very real penchant to impale his enemies.

So, what turned Vlad into the sadistic legend he is today? He was a well educated boy, and was taught philisophy, science, math’s as well as warfare. But, at the young age of 13 he was taken as a political hostage by the Turks along with his little brother Radu to guarantee his father’s good behaviour. Although he was treated as well as could be expected as a hostage and had the freedom to wander, with bodyguards of course, he didn’t take as well as Radu to Turkish ways and was often punished. But his father chose to misbehave and thus began his real imprisonment and torture. Starved, beaten and kept in a cell that looked out on to an execution area, he watched men and women be executed and die…often by impalement. It was enough to drive anyone mad, and fed his already zealous hatred of the Turks. At 17 Vlad’s beloved older brother Mircea was buried alive by the Turks , he went berserk and was finally released from prison.

From his release and escape back to Wallachia, to his death Vlad’s life was marked by his hatred and war with the Turks and his determination to keep Wallachia. He was a bloody, ruthless and ferocious leader, given to impaling his enemies and terrorising his own people. But he is seen as a hero in Romania, modern day Wallachia, despite his brutality and sadism for his unfailing rebellion against the invading Turks. But, that is not how the rest of the world saw him, soon after his death he became a legend as pamphlets and books retold and no doubt exaggerated his deeds, good and bad, extolling his thirst for blood and the brutal and cruel treatment of his enemies and his tyranny over his own people. And then of course there was Bram Stoker who in 1897 forever immortalised him as Dracula.

So who was Dracula in the end? A Christian crusader, a monster, tortured, insane, cruel, heroic, ruthless, a freedom fighter, no doubt he was all of these things, and I certainly know that I would never want to get on his bad side.

250px-Vlad_Tepes_002 What Dracula really looked like luke-evans-reveals-the-origin-of-dracula-untold_us8n.1920 Modern day depiction

In the mood for some Dracula as the bad guy?

dracula Midnight's-Daughter


Or maybe you prefer Dracula….misunderstood…


What are some of your favorite books about Dracuia?

❤ ♡ Don’t want to miss any more posts? Subscribe to this blog by email! ♡ ❤

Follow Me
Latest posts by Under the Covers Book Blog (see all)

Share this!

Notify of

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

No books are coming to mind, great post though!

Pansy Petal

Were you in the walls listen to my daughter’s and mine debate about Bram Storker’s Dracula yesterday? How timely this post is! Not only did you help me out by providing a link for me to get a copy, but you imparted some wonderfully interesting history. Loved it. As to your question, a few years ago, (2005) I acquired a copy of The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova. Lovely read that imparted some of the above history as well as incorporating some of the Bram Stoker lore and elaborating both for her own story. It was a fascinating read that still… Read more »


Love stoker’s and chance’s stories. .. I also enjoyed the historian

Sophia Rose

Very fascinating person! I’ve devoured the History Channel specials on him and tend to enjoy stories with him in them. My favorite for historical feel to it is Elizabeth Kostova’s The Historian, but I love Karen Chance’s depiction of Dracula and his family- Mircea, Radu and Dory. I’m only so-so on Jeaniene Frost’s Vlad. Liked a few books with Mina Harker as the heroine to Dracula retellings. I was actually not that into the actual Dracula story (is that bad to admit?).

Fun and different post, thanks!