September 13, 2008

Werewolves And Other Dark Creatures Such as Count Dracula

Transylvania, Romania is home to some legendary creatures of darkness. Included is the werewolf.



The legend of the werewolf, though, is not simply part of Transylvania but many of the Eastern and Western European cultures have some ties to this. Yet in Transylvania the idea flourished.  Before they were hunted to near extinction, the wolf raised both fear and awe to the peoples in the Carpathian mountains.  Along with bears and large game animals, Transylvania used to have many animals which could seriously harm a grown adult.  The wolves in particular were feared because of their ferocious nature, and the fact that they were not domesticated.


A werewolf, according to the myth, is a man who becomes wolf at night, often under the light of the full moon. Once transformed, this creature would crave meat, in most cases the legend goes, it would crave human flesh.

There were many places where the werewolf and Dracula would be linked in modern pop culture, such as to how to kill a werewolf. Some things or objects such as crucifixes which stop a vampire will not stop a werewolf. Sliver, made into a bullet, can stop a werewolf but not any vampire, unless of course the silver is a stake driven into a vampire's undead heart. 

In Eastern Europe, the suggestion was said that if one looked at a wolf and saw human eyes looking back then that was a werewolf, which they must kill.  Count Dracula could be killed with sunlight.

I think that werewolves go as far back as Rome and since the Romans had conquered much of what is now Transylvania it might be where it started to take root.  Romulus and Remus were abandoned or orphaned and raised by a she-wolf.  The Roman empire would eventually invade the Dacian Empire, which Transylvania was a part of.  It is possible that this is where the myth of werewolves began.

Either way, many people will assume that a person from Transylvania will know of the more Westernised ideas of werewolves.  Yet the people of Hungary and Romania have many different stories as to how to become a werewolf. They have their own equally interesting legends and myths.

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