Friday, November 8, 2013

Bram Stoker was born - 1847



On November 8, 1847, Bram Stoker, author of the horror novel “Dracula,” was born in Dublin, Ireland. Stoker’s villainous, blood-sucking creation, the vampire Count Dracula, became a pop-culture icon and has been featured in hundreds of movies, books, plays and other forms of entertainment. After overcoming a childhood filled with health problems that frequently left him bedridden, Stoker graduated from Trinity College in Dublin. He then worked for the Irish Civil Service while writing theater reviews for a Dublin newspaper. His drama reviews brought him to the attention of Henry Irving, a well-respected actor of the Victorian era who was said to have served as an influence for Stoker’s Count Dracula. Stoker eventually became Irving’s manager and also worked as a manager for the Lyceum Theater in London. He published several horror novels in the 1890s before the debut of his most famous work, “Dracula,” in 1897. Set in Victorian England, “Dracula” is the story of a centuries-old vampire and Transylvania nobleman, Count Dracula, who roams around at night biting the throats of human victims, whose blood he needs to survive. The concept of vampires didn’t originate with Stoker: These mythical creatures, who cast no shadows, have no reflections in mirrors and can be killed with a stake through their hearts, actually first appeared in ancient folklore. Stoker’s novel has been adapted for the big screen several times. An unauthorized version of the book was made into a 1922 German film, “Nosferatu.” In 1931, Universal Pictures released the well-received “Dracula,” which starred Hungarian-born actor Bela Lugosi in the title role. Bram Stoker died at the age of 64 on April 20, 1912, in London. He published other novels after “Dracula,” but none achieved the same level of success.
 
Michael Thomas Barry is the author of Literary Legends of the British Isles. The book can be purchased from Amazon through the following links:

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