When going on the trails of Dracula, one can find Dracula in northern Transylvania. Other say, in order to detect him, you must travel to the southern part. How does the southern legend sound like?
This legend of southern Transylvania about Dracula is often mixed-up with the historical existing medieval voivode Vlad Țepeș also known as Vlad Dracul, in Romanian the devil. The voivode was well-known for his cruelty impaling thieves and criminals and people were afraid of him. Bram Stoker used the name Dracula for the vampire in his novel and the two stories melted into one.
The legend than shifted to the Bran Castle. There is a thin connection between Vlad Țepeș and this castle. There is no documentation that he owned Bran. However, in the fall of 1462, it appears that Vlad Dracul locked himself in the Bran Castle for two months.
The Bran Castle is the only one in Transylvania that fits Bram Stockers description from chapter two of his novel: “. . . on the very edge of a terrific precipice . . . with occasionally a deep rift where there is a chasm [with] silver threads where the rivers wind in deep gorges through the forests.”
There is also the possibility, that the author of the novel Dracula, Bram Stocker, read a description of the Bran Castle in a book, and was inspired by it when writing.
The castle story begins in 1377, when, the office of the Hungarian King Louis the I issued a document granting the people of Brașov the privilege of building a castle. In 1388, the castle, built on a steep cliff between Măgura and Dealul Cetăţii, was completed.
It served the role of a fortress (was used in an attempt to stop the Ottoman Empire’s expansion ) and the role of customs (holding 3% of goods transferring in and out of Transylvania). By the end of the fifteenth century, the castle’s commander also held the title of Vice-Voivode of Transylvania.
In 1723, the renovation was completed on the northern tower of the castle, as mentioned in an inscription. A new chapter opens in 1920 and lasts until 1932, when the castle was converted into a royal summer residence.
Bran Castle was transformed by the communist authorities into a museum and has been one ever since.
There is also the local story about strigoi. There is the belief in the existence of evil spirits in the villages near Bran. They belived strigoi were people who lead a normal life during the day, but during the night, they haunted the village, while their souls left their bodies. And similar to Bram Stokers vampires, the power of the strogoi faded with the first daylight.
Finding yourself in northern or southern Transylvania, you now know how to detect Dracula.
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