The Dracula Myth
It’s Halloween here in Chicago. And since Romania is (generally speaking) widely known in the U.S. for its orphanages, sometime the televised Revolution of 1989 when the dictator Ceausescu was overthrown, but most of all for Count Dracula of Transylvania, I thought of at least clear off the smoke of confusion for some.
Was He Real?
Widely known as a fictional character, due to its author Bram Stoker, Count Dracula was inspired by Vlad III The Impaler.
Vlad The Impaler was a Romanian Prince in the 15th century (1431 – 1476) and beside the fact that he was nothing more than a fierce Ottoman Empire occupation hater and a subject for our history classes in Romania. I remember that vividly learning about him in the 3rd class.
The term “Impaler” was given because of his notorious method of bringing some order into his anarchic kingdom and (Ottoman oppression) that takes a person being pierced with a long stake and leaving them full public view. At one point he “welcomed” the Turks with a “forest” of 20,000 impaled Turkish prisoners.
Later, Vlad was imprisoned by Matthias Corvinus of Hungary (I actually visited his castle several times) where he was well of to a degree that he was actually able to marry Matthias’s cousin, Ilona Szilágy.
Unfortunately Count Dracula doesn’t like anything cooked with garlic. Too bad! His Sarmale, will taste blend. He will miss out on the enticing sauteed garlic smell in my kitchen that I will use today to make my Gorgonzola cheese sauced home made linguine!
So, yes, my Romanian blood comes the closest to Vlad The Impaler’s heritage! I am partly Hungarian, and part Romanian, born in Transylvania, etc., etc! Freaky enough for you?
There is only one problem with me: I ADORE GARLIC!