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Dracula Vlad III

We’ve heard tales of Dracula’s historical ties, but how much of the fictional monster was really inspired by the real life murderer, Vlad III? (31 min) (4.17.20)

Ominous Origins

Welcome to the Ominous Origins Podcast, a Horror Shots production. If you were previously a fan of the Horror Shots Podcast, this is the same great show with the same compelling content focused on myth, mysterious creatures, unexplained events, spooky stories — and even some of the strangest and most disturbing true crime stories. As always, our goal is to entertain, but also to enlighten with short, well-researched episodes on a variety of fascinating topics.

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Dracula is a name that has struck fear into the hearts of many, since his origin in the 1897 novel by Bram Stoker. But what was the basis for the character? Many cite the formidable Vlad Tepes, or Vlad III, or Vlad the Impaler — essentially a guy called Vlad who was the prince of Wallachia in the 1400s. However, the truth might not be that black and white, and maybe many of us have been wrong in the assumption that Vlad was the inspiration for Dracula.

As it turns out, Bram Stoker never set foot in Romania, where Wallachia happened to lie, and never saw the infamous castle in person. Rather, it was a drawing that sparked the imagination of Stoker. Granted, it was a drawing of a Romanian castle. Nevertheless, Vlad the Impaler himself didn’t directly inspire Dracula, and the name, Vlad Dracul was actually Vlad II, The Impaler’s father.

I’m giving away far too much here.

The relationship between the real life Vlad, who had a very interesting life, and Dracula is quite thin. But that doesn’t mean the creation of Dracula, and his impact on pop-culture, can be overlooked. Additionally, the influence that the real Vlad III had on history is also unquestionable. Together, the stories of Vlad and Dracula make for two enduring tales — one based in imagination and the other in reality.

Listen to the cast to get the full story.

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