His life was a struggle for power with cruel enemies. He himself committed a lot of atrocities, that caused apalling myths about vampires among people. Vlad III Basarab (approx. 1431s-1476s.) – was a ruler of the small Principality of Wallachia, located in the South of modern Romania, got 2 cognomens at a time: Țepeș and Dracula.
Devil or Dragon?
It’s known that a prototype of all modern stories of vampires was a member of the Knightly Order of the Dragon, that was founded in 1408 by the Hungarian king Sigismund I Luxembourg. According to some historians, this Order was an occult community that was searching for the sources of eternal life. Some say, they believed that human blood was the elixir from all diseases. The word “dracula” can be translated as “deagon”, but it also has a meaning of “devil, damn”. The fact that the rulers of the Orthodox Principality could be called in such an ambiguously way, indicated their possible commitment to Satanism.
The cognomen “Țepeș” is far more macabre. It derrives from Hungarian word țeapă which is translated as “stake, pale”. Vlad was called the Impaler for his cruel mass executions by impaling. Some myths say that he liked arranging dinners right if front of all impaled innocent people. The fact that corpses were absolutely bloodless generated stories athat Vlad drank their blood. It was somehow a way to explain his cruelty.
Tortures in Turkish captivity
Many investigators claim that the roots of the atrocity of Walachia ruler go back to the times spent in Turkish captivity. He endured enormous sufferings there. The thing is that in summer 1444 Vlad and his brother Radu were sent as hostages to Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, Murad II (1404-1451s) by their own father. If wallachs had denied to pay tribute to Turkish and continued fighting for national sovereignty, the boys would have been executed. Some sources say Vlad was tortured brutally and forced to accept Islam.
Brother seduced by Sultan
History says that Radu, Vlad’s younger brother, was seduced by Mehmed II the Conqueror – Sultan’s son, and eventually beceme a homosexual.
Vlad willed to assert his authority in Walachia by brutally dealing with boyars (noblemen), who secretly supported his political oponents. Once he invited representatives of the aristocracy to the Eater feast and executed all of his guests. Historians admit the truthfulness of this story, the only thing they argue about is the date. They say, there were from 50 up to 500 Wallachian nobles killed.
The support of the Orthodox Church
In light of all that said, the thing that shocks the most is his infinite piety. Dracula generously donated money and lands to the Orthodox monasteries and parishes located not only in Walachia, but also in Greece. In 1460 not far from the township Giurgiu he founded a monastery of Comana and later a chirch in the town of Targsor. Many historians believe it all was done to silence the occuring rumors about his devotion to Satan.
Crimes: evident and fictional
We have to admit that despite his absolute cruelty, numerous stories were exaggerated in by people and turned into legends-horror stories. The story about 20 or even 30 thousand impaled people, for example. It is said that brave Ottoman warriors were all scared to death at this horrible seen. This legend was fabricated by his political oponents and numerous enemies after his death.
The grave turned out to be empty
The reason for ominous rumors of Walachia ruler was the fact that his crypt was found empty. Headless corpse of Dracula, as we know, was buried in the Orthodox monastery located in the town of Snagov. But many centuries later when scientist opened the tomb of the legendary vampire they didn’t find any human remains.