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Stoker (147-1912) was not the first to write about vampires. Polidori and Sheridan Le Fanu previously wrote about Vampires, and these tales are considered to be masterpieces of the genre. Stoker’s character was different, and the vampire is as a very ambiguous and even human figure, unlike the traditional depictions of the beings as simply hideous and monstrous beings. In Stoker's work, Count Dracula’s early years are only briefly discussed. It appears that he was a member of the landed nobility and belonged to the Selkyer ethnic group, who are kin to the Hungarians. The native land of the Count is described as the land beyond the forest; this description is an old term referring to Transylvania in modern Romania.
Count Dracula we are told was a prominent figure in his times. He was a leader of his people and was also a great knight. The Count was very brave in defense of his homeland against the Ottoman Turks, who regularly attacked his people. In Stoker’s novel, Dracula was a great warrior and knight who fearlessly fought the Muslim Turks and helped to maintain the freedom of his native land and people. The character is shown to be possessed of great intellect and a ferocious curiosity.<ref> Bram Stoker Dracula edited by Nina Auerbach and David J. Skal (London, Norton, 1997)</ref> There was no science or art that he did not study.
However, like Faust, he grew dissatisfied with science and reason and began to study the dark arts and in particular alchemy and black magic. Stoker has his character studying magic and alchemy in an academy in the Carpathian Mountains in his native Transylvania.
Although this Dracula is a very respected figure who falls in love and marries. When his wife commits suicide because of a false report of his death, he is distraught.<ref>Stoker, p 24</ref> The local Orthodox priests refuse to bury his wife, because suicide is a mortal sin, and told him that she would never see Heaven. The Count is outraged and renounces his Christianity and turns to the dark side. In his anger, he commits various acts of sacrilege. When he wounds some religious figures’, he drinks their blood and at this point, he becomes a vampire.