Do Vampires Belong in Mythology – A to Z Challenge

My theme for the “A to Z Challenge” is World Mythology.A2Z-BADGE 2016-smaller_zpslstazvib

My A to Z posts will run concurrently with my usual posts. I hope they spark your curiosity. I find it fascinating how so many stories crossed the boundaries of countries and even oceans.


V is for Vampires

The Vampire, by Philip Burne-Jones, 1897 (Wikipedia)
The Vampire, by Philip Burne-Jones, 1897 (Wikipedia)

Do they come from the world’s great mythologies?

I had a look around and found that they belong more in folklore than in mythology.

“…the vampire, which is defined by Paraclesus as the astral body of a person …[who] seeks to prolong existence upon the physical plane 41YJnNaeppL._AC_US160_by robbing the living of their vital energies ….” ( The Secret Teachings of all Ages, Manly P. Hall, p. 292)”

Vampire-like creatures have been recorded in most cultures as the boogey men who hid in the shadows and killed people, but they didn’t become really popular until the early 18th century when vampire legends flowed in from the Balkans and Eastern Europe.

The 800-year-old skeleton found in Bulgaria stabbed through the chest with iron rod.[65]
The 800-year-old skeleton found in Bulgaria stabbed through the chest with iron rod.[65]
“… although local variants were also known by different names, such as shtriga in Albania, vrykolakas in Greece and strigoi in Romania. This increased level of vampire superstition in Europe led to what can only be called mass hysteria and in some cases resulted in corpses actually being staked and people being accused of vampirism.” (Wikipedia)

Today vampires are mostly found in fiction. I think:) In 1819 John Polidori published The Vampyre, which is considered one of, if not the, most influential early vampire stories of the 19th century. Bram Stoker’s 1897 novel Dracula, however is the quintessential vampire novel, which provides the basis for our modern stories.


Resources

Wikipedia

Hall, Manly P., The Secret Teachings of all Ages, New York, Dover Publications,1901, Dover 2010 ed.

Feature Image: Count Dracula as portrayed by Béla Lugosi in 1931’s Dracula (Wikipedia)


DO YOU WANT MORE?

Go to my 2016 A to Z Challenge page to see my other posts on world mythology.

Author: Jo-Ann Carson

Jo-Ann Carson writes a saucy mix of fantasy, adventure and romance. Her latest stories are in the Gambling Ghosts Series: A Highland Ghost for Christmas, A Viking Ghost for Valentine’s Day, Confessions of a Pirate Ghost and The Biker Ghost Meets his Match. An anthology of the novellas will be coming out this summer. Currently she is working on Midnight Magic, A Ghost & Abby Mystery, the first book in a spin-off series from her Viking ghost story. Jo-Ann loves watching sunrises, playing Mah Jong and drinking good coffee. You can chat with her on social media: You can find all her links on her website - http://jo-anncarson.com

6 thoughts on “Do Vampires Belong in Mythology – A to Z Challenge”

    1. Hi Emma,
      They make great stories. Can you imagine the time when people told tales about them late at night and people believed in them. Gives me goosebumps just to think about it.
      Thanks for stopping by Emma.
      Best
      Jo-Ann

      Like

  1. Hi Jo-Ann 🙂
    I’m trying to catch up on posts that I didn’t manage to read before the challenge ended.
    Vampires are fascinating sunjects, dont’ you think so? Soemtimes it isn’t easy to tell folklore from reality…

    Like

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