What is a Dhampir?
Well, it’s a half vampire, half human hybrid of course, Blade taught us that. But this idea didn’t come from the entertainment world. The idea of a vampire/human mix comes straight from age-old vampire lore, Gypsy lore to be exact.
Dhampir is the name the Slavonic Gypsies came up with to call the child of a vampire. This child has some of the powers that its vampire parent has, but what those powers are depend on the vampire and myth. How a dhampir is made is also a something that Gypsies debated on. The was commonly believed that a newly made male vampire was incredibly aroused when he woke, and he would sate his desires by going back to his human widow and having his way with her. As for male vampires with no widows, well, they would just go after any young woman they could find. It was then possible for his wife, or whoever, to become pregnant with his vampire baby. That baby was then known as a dhampir. However, other Gypsies didn’t use this word, sometimes they would call the child a vampir (if male), vampuiera (if female), vampijerovic, or lampijerovic. Some believed that this child was always male, then you had others saying that it died shortly after birth because its body was made of something like jelly, and another rumor was that the child wasn’t special at all – that it was a normal human. But for the most part, it was believed that being the child of a vampire and having vampire blood in your veins meant you had super powers. And when it came to inheriting the lust for blood, well that’s another thing that changes from myth to myth. In some cases a dhampir craves blood, but other times it has no desire for it.
These dhampirs born were usually turned into vampire hunters because of their powers to detect and destroy the undead. Yup, that didn’t come from Blade or BloodRayne, dhampirs in the past were said to hunt vampires. In Serbia it is believed that vampires are invisible and that only dhampirs are able to see them, therefore dhampirs were paid to hunt down and kill these vamps. How this played out is a dhampir would go out to kill the vampire, if you were watching you would see a person flailing around, apparently wrestling with an invisible foe. After some time, the dhampir would declare to the watching villagers that the vampire was dead and then he or she would collect a large payment from the town. The last time this happened was in 1959 in the Yugoslavian province of Kosovo.
Moonlight (aka Amanda) loves to write about, read about and learn about everything pertaining to vampires. You will most likely find her huddled over a book of vampire folklore with coffee in hand. Touch her coffee and she may bite you (and not in the fun way).