Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Vlad, The Impaler

(Copyright © 2002 www.vladtheimpaler.com)

As you may well know, author Bram Stoker (1847-1912) based the title character of his 1897 novel Dracula on an actual human being, or should we say inhuman being.


What is interesting to note, is that Stoker's vampire, while being loosely based on Vlad the Impaler, is nowhere near as threatening, nor as sadistic.
Stoker's Dracula is a mysterious, somewhat sensual character who kills and feeds to survive, much like any being in nature. In fact, as much as there is reference to the evil of Dracula, it can be reasoned that all of his actions were motivated by survival.
Vlad the Impaler, on the other hand, killed not to feed, but to revel in his own power, and just for the sheer pleasure of seeing the suffering of his numerous victims.


Vlad the Impaler wasn't a "real" vampire, but he probably caused more rivers of blood to flow than any other tyrant in the history of the world.

Detailed history and the most accurate facts about Vlad's life can be found on the following links if you care to take a look:


The Impalement
(in Wikipedia)

Impalement is an act of torture and/or execution whereby the victim is pierced by a long stake.

The penetration can be through the sides, from the rectum, or possibly through the mouth.

The stake would be usually planted in the ground, leaving the victim hanging to die.

In some forms of impalement, the stake would be inserted so as to avoid immediate death, and would function as a plug to prevent blood loss — thus extending the victim's agony for many hours.

One way to achieve this gradual death is to insert the stake through the rectum deep into the body of the victim until it left the body near the right shoulder, thus avoiding damaging the heart.
(in Wikipedia)

More than anything else the historical Dracula is known for his inhuman cruelty.

Impalement was Dracula's preferred method of torture and execution. [...]

Dracula usually had a horse attached to each of the victim's legs an a sharpened stake was gradually forced into the body. The end of the stake was usually oiled and care was taken that the stake not be too sharp; else the victim might die too rapidly from shock.
Infants were sometimes impaled on the stake forced through their mother's chests. The records indicate that victims were sometimes impaled so that they hung upside down on the stake. [...]

Dracula often had the stakes arranged in various geometric patterns. The most common pattern was a ring of concentric circles in the outskirts of a city that was his target. The height of the spear indicated the rank of the victim. [...]

Thousands were often impaled at a single time. [...]

The list of tortures employed by this cruel prince reads like an inventory of hell's (sic) tools: nails in heads, cutting off of limbs, blinding, strangulation, burning, cutting off of noses and ears, mutilation of sexual organs (especially in the case of women), scalping, skinning, exposure to the elements or to wild animals and boiling alive. [...]