This changes everything. Let me explain to those who might not understand the implications why this is such a big deal. Those of us who love the connection between the fictional Count Dracula and the historical Vlad Dracula have had to concede, ever since the discovery of Bram Stoker’s notes for DRACULA the novel, that Stoker knew very little about the historical Dracula, that he basically took the name from him but not much else. All we’ve had to go on were those notes. But new evidence suggests this view is mistaken, and that Bram Stoker did in fact know about Vlad Dracula! Fittingly, this information has been unearthed by Bram’s great grand-nephew, Dacre Stoker.
Dacre credits Philip Spedding, Director of Development at the London Library, so I reckon I ought to as well. Spedding is the guy who discovered the library books that Bram Stoker used for research while writing DRACULA. (We know Stoker used those books because he wrote in them!) It turns out, one of those books, ROUMANIA PAST AND PRESENT by James Samuelson, has a passage concerning Vlad Dracula, the historical Dracula, and it’s more than just a cursory mention. Dacre Stoker read that section himself, and was able to verify it. If Bram did in fact read that book, as it seems he did, since he made mention of it in his notes, then he *did* know a lot more about the historical Dracula than previously believed! Said Dacre: “Bram did not write anything in his Notes for Dracula about Vlad the Impaler [but] I figure he did not need to [as] it is possible that he formed enough of an idea about the reputation of his Count after reading [this book] to change the name of his Count from Wampyr to Count Dracula. One must realize that Bram did not include a lot of things in his Notes for Dracula which appeared in his novel.”
This is huge, peeps. HUGE.
By the way, if you haven’t read Dacre’s own Dracula novels, you really ought to. They rock.