Yes, I have chosen Bela Lugosi to illustrate you, because let’s be fair, he’s the most suitable person to do that:
You are the one who invades everyone’s minds when it comes to Romania and Romanian people… and this is so wrong! We actually love garlic (we even have it in every traditional dish), we aren’t afraid of it.
But, here comes the interesting part. You are a novel character, one written by the Irish Bram Stoker at the end of XIX century, 1897 to be exact. You are that feared Transylvanian count, the so-called lord of a castle up on a high cliff, where people seem like little ants, wandering around, where you could only see the river cutting the valley, the valley of Transylvania.
You are often mistaken with Vlad Tepeş- Vlad the Impaler, seemingly your doppelganger, who is the Wallachian prince, lord of a castle which nowadays is now a ruin which lays in the Wallachian region. As the Bran Castle (which I have visited at least 3 times in my lifetime- quite a lot considering my age) is the only castle which resemblance with Bram Stoker’s description, everybody and I truly mean it, everybody thinks of it as it was your castle. You can’t imagine what a cult of personality you have over there. You’ll definitely make Communist leaders feel a little bit suppressed.
Here is the lovely Bran Castle:
Going back to Stocker’s novel, in the second chapter, there is described a fearful valley which is supervised by a dreadful castle, a valley in which only who had a power of will could ever survive.
But, there comes a problem, Bram Stocker has never visited Romania (what a shame!). This description of the imaginary Castle of Dracula comes from a description of the Bran Castle which was available in England at the end of the XIX century. Of, course, your castle really resemblance with the Bran Castle, I mean, even the first edition of this novel had a drawing of it.
A little bird chipping has said that the source of inspiration was an illustration made by Charles Boner- “Transylvania: Its Product and Its People”. Really interesting the copyright of that time, who needed that many laws back then?
On the other hand, Vlad Ţepeş – Vlad the Impaler the Voivode (Prince) of the Romanian Country ( Wallachia) between 1456-1462 and 1467 ( he really had a very interesting reign- full of blood and humans impaled into sticks). He was well-regarded, by political reasons as being a merciful and blood-thirsted prince.
Your name, if we are keeping aside all about your story, isn’t fearful at all. It derives from a name of an order of the crusade – The Order of Dragon, in which both Vlad the Impaler and his father, Vlad Dracul – Vlad the Dragon( which may be translated as the Devil; was a member of this order). The other side to your story is deeply rooted in myths, traditional and folk beliefs about ghosts and vampires.
Your personality, as imagined by Stoker is simply put like this: a centuries-old vampire, as well as a Transylvanian lord which believes that he is a descendant of the ruler of the Huns, Attila. Apart from your bloodthirst, which I am not going to discuss, because I even imagine how you are looking at my neck, with hunger.
Stocker has tried to escape the fate of creating a real historical link between you and Vlad the Impaler, but failed, as the marketing has succeeded to create a brand of yourself, especially in Romania, especially right before you are entering the castle, through all those silly persons trying to sell everything with your face. From spoons, vampire teeth and even clothes, there isn’t a stop of what sells and not.
You are indeed a celebrity. An ode to whoever asks me if I am a vampire. I think that every Romanian has a link to you, not because of the novel (because I don’t think that many people have read it), but because of the whole power which you hold, the whole bloody background that you have. You are truly and inspiration.
Saying no more, because I can already feel how you got thirsty, I am going to fly away, hoping for my safeness.