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Dear Vlad, was Re: a little history lesson

Poster: "S. M. Thorson" <smt2@st-andrews.ac.uk>

On Thu, 11 Jun 1998, Corun MacAnndra wrote:

> You're correct. His name was Vlad Tsepish (I'm not really sure of the exact
> spelling, but this is one I've encountered), Prince of Walachia. I believe
> Dracul was a title he was given. He was also known as Vlad the Impaler,
> owing to one of his favourite pastimes, that of impaling his enemies on
> stakes, sometimes high and low according to rank. He was betrayed by his
> cousin, the Prince of Moldavia, during a crucial battle. It was this
> impaling and his viciousness in dealing with enemies and criminals that led
> to the legends of him being a vampire and that vampires can only be killed
> by plunging a stake through its heart.

I think that name is more usually spelled Tepic (with diacritical marks
all over), but I could be wrong about that.  :-)

The Dracul nickname came to him from his father, a member of the chivalric
Order of the Dragon, which was originally founded as a crusading order to
protect Eastern Europe from the Turks.

>From what I know of him, Vlad didn't like the Turks much at all.  You can
still visit his castle (in the modern Romania).  A friend of mine was
there a few months ago. 

In Kay Staniland's _Medieval Crafstmen: Embroiderers_, there's a
photograph of a really remarkable embroidered badge of the Order of the

As far as mediaeval vampires (ie undead who drink the blood of the living)
I've seen mediaeval descriptions of animate corpses which match the modern
concept of ghouls and wights, but not vampires, at least as we would
understand the term.

Stephanie M. Thorson			|  SCA: Lady Alianora Munro
Dept. of Scottish History		|  Clan White Wing
University of St Andrews		|  Tarkhan, Khanate Red Lion

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