As many of you may recall I did a whole month or two long segment about vampires. Why? Because the fascinate me. Not so much the actual creature but the myth, legend, origins, or truth behind the tales.
When we think vampires we often think blood sucking, bat morphing, creatures of the night with a hint of seduction in most tales. If I asked any of you to name a vampire, of course maybe not the Twilight crowd, many of you would say Dracula as your immediate response. Trust me I asked a few people and this was the results. Dracula or the main character from Twilight was what came up and it was a generation difference in the answers. I am sure the character, forgot the name, from Twilight was good but in my mind no one can ever replace the vampire who brought vampire folklore to light, Dracula.
Many of you may be aware that the story of Dracula was actually developed form some true beliefs in history and then compiled into a story of vampirism by Dracula’s author Bram Stoker in 1897. I know it doesn’t seem like it is as old as it should be. I often find myself more prone to believe that the story was a love story with the horror added in to make the storyline more compelling when dealing with the turbulence of love and the effects it can have on a person. Regardless it is a good story but it delves deep into the aspects of love and hate and horror.
The Dracula Museum:
Now just to set the record straight there are many “Dracula Museums.” Two of the more commonly known ones are in Dublin, Ireland where Stoker was born and then there was another famous one in Germany. However, I want to concentrate on the real backstory museums or tours that take place in the castles where the original tales were supposed to be created form in Stoker’s story. The main one being the Bran Castle in Romania just 84 miles north of Bucharest.
Now I know what people are thinking Bran Castle, Raisin Bran, and Bram Stoker. No, there is no relation. Bram Stoker actually never visited Transylvania or Romania when writing Dracula and I may be mistaken but I don’t think he ever did. He relied on research and pictures to develop his story and descriptions of the region. The castle itself, well, it probably has no relation to the person, Vlad Tepes (Impaler) or Vlad III Dracula. Yet it is the most likely castle that Bram Stokers book was describing that Jonathan Harker went to visit in the late 1890s. So there is a little bit of a relation. The castle was built in a very promising time for it to be the home or once home of the possible real Dracula depicted in Stoker’s tale but historians and others say otherwise.
Why the castle and not the museums:
The way I feel about things is if you want to experience history go to the source. Since the world is so vast it is often times hard to do. This castle does have tours and stuff like that which reflect on the history of Dracula and give you a sort of “walking in the footsteps” museum quality. Many of the other museums boast there original relics and movies props all supporting the original terror of the night himself, Dracula. But more often than not the objects are more modern and are simply a collection of items over the years that have anything to do with Dracula. So if I wanted to go to a museum to see some original authentic “Dracula related” items I would choose one of these castles or perhaps one of the two museums mentioned earlier. There are many other castles that have a relationship to the tale of Dracula out there but I liked this one the best so choose this for the topic of discussion. Besides the name kind of sticks with you and makes people seek out the deeper, more hidden, parts of Dracula’s past regardless of it being an official museum or a guided tour. Check out all the castles, monasteries, and citadels when you get a chance. It is quite interesting.
Thanks for Reading,
Joshua Crane Dowidat