The Real Vampires Among Us
But what if they weren’t just myths? Are there grounds for a discovery of an actual vampire? While science denies the existence of the undead, here are a few cases of people that were thought to be real vampires.
With a vast number of vampires appearing in all forms of media including literature, music, and film and television, it’s a wonder where writers continue to come up with new ideas for the vampire entertainment we have today. Since vampire are mythological creatures that have a rich and diverse history going back to the beginnings of humanity, one would think that writers are just borrowing from the myths. But what if they weren’t just myths? Are there grounds for a discovery of an actual vampire? While science denies the existence of the undead, here are a few cases of people that were thought to be real vampires.
Vlad the Impaler
Arguably the figure that inspired the most famous vampire, the one that kicked off the modern vampire myth; Bran Stoker’s Count Dracula, Vlad Dracula, also known as Vlad the Impaler, has seen his legend wear many faces throughout the years. Born in Transylvania, Romania, and ruling Walachia, Romania off and on from 1456-1462, Vlad earned his reputation fighting the Ottoman Empire as they tried to expand into Europe. Legend had it that Vlad like to kill his enemies by impaling them on wooden stakes only to dine among them while they died, dipping his bread in their blood. It is easy to see how this historical figure led to the inspiration for one of literature’s greatest monsters.
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A more modern myth from Exeter, Rhode Island, Mercy Brown was the daughter of farmer George Brown. At a time when people would blame multiple deaths in a family on the ‘undead,’ Mercy’s family had lost many members to tuberculosis in the late 1800’s. The townspeople, fearing for their lives, had no qualms about exhuming a body to investigate the corpse for signs of vampirism. When Mercy’s body was examined, it hadn’t decayed. This led the townspeople to accuse Mercy of vampirism. They cut out her heart and burned it. A tragic situation made worse by superstitions and fear.
A Countess who owned land in what is now Hungary, Slovakia, and Romania, Bathory has been named, by Guinness World Records, as the most prolific female murderer. Along with four collaborators, Bathory has been accused of torturing and killing hundreds of women between 1590 and 1610. More than 300 people, witnesses and survivors, spoke out at her trial along with all the gruesome evidence found at her castle. When she was convicted, her family’s station prevented her from execution but she was imprisoned in her castle, unable to torment the women of the countryside.
A Serbian villager who died in 1725, Peter was exhumed a few weeks after his death and staked through the heart. Plogojowitz had been the first person in his village to die of a sickness and all the subsequent deaths were blamed on him. The autopsy report had reveling signs that led the villagers to believe Peter was the late-night visitor haunting them; ‘I did not detect the slightest order that is otherwise characteristic of the dead, and the body…was completely fresh.’
There are possibly hundreds, if not thousands more document cases of people who are thought to be real vampires. Science denies them but there are those who believe and fear them. From as far back as the ancient Sumerians all the way to the modern vampires prowling on the screens of Hollywood blockbusters, the vampire has been an enduring monster that continues to haunt humanities dreams. If you dare learn more about the vampire check out the novel, The Darkness of Truth by Leif Erickson.
The Darkness of Truth is the 11th published novel from Leif Erickson. Blending historical mysteries, religious doctrines, political intrigue, and a new twist on the vampire mythology, this new Young Adult novel will keep you turning page far into the night. You’ll no longer fear death, but you will fear those you meet along the way. For more information on author Leif Erickson and to buy his books today, please visit: www.leifericksonwriting.com and see where your imagination can take you.
Elizabeth Bathory | Biography & Facts”. Encyclopedia Britannica.
Vampire History. www.History.com/topics/folklore/vampire-history July 27,2020 A&E Television Networks.
Tucker. (2012, October). Meet the Real-Life Vampires of New England and Abroad. Smithsonian Magazine. https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/meet-the-real-life-vampires-of-new-england-and-abroad-42639093/
About Leif J. Erickson
Leif J. Erickson is a science fiction and fantasy author from a small farming community in west central Minnesota. Using his time wisely when he was a farmer, Leif developed many ideas, characters, and storylines to create over fifty unique first drafts and outlines for stories. From his start in a small town school, to college at North Dakota State University, back to his family farm, then to the bright lights of Minneapolis, Minnesota, and back to his small farming town, Leif has always had a love of writing.
When Leif isn’t writing he can be found with his wife hiking in state parks, canoeing local lakes and rivers, exploring local and regional ghost towns, experiencing museums, or simply reading or hanging out with friends and family. Leif draws on the local nature and ecology to find inspiration for his writing while he also asks what’s possible for technology and the human race, weaving them together for amazing stories that will stay with the reader for years to come. Leif looks forward to having many novel and story releases in the years to come.
You can see all of Leif’s Books here: Leif’s Amazon Author Page