Friday, October 7, 2016


Huendoara Castle

   Hunedoara is not a name that frequently pops up in conversations about vampires and especially Dracula.  Few people know that Hunedoara is actually the castle where Vlad the Impaler, the man who gave inspiration to Hollywood's Dracula, was imprisoned during the fifteenth century.
   Located in Transylvania, Romania, the castle pretty much stands the way it looked back then during Vlad's time.  The castle is Gotic in style and has both round and square shaped turrets with a red roof, perched over a cliff near the Hungarian border.

Vlad the Impaler

   Hunedoara, or Hunyadi as it is more properly known, has a rich background in Eastern European history.  Because of its close location to Hungary, at one point it was claimed as part of Hungarian territory when the nation was part of the Austrian-Hungarian empire until the end of World War 1.  As with any other castle, Hunedoara, also contains grand rooms for those who once owned it; a knight's hall, diet's hall, guard rooms, and sleeping quarters.  The castle was first built by the Anjou family which claims its origins back to the House of Angevin, a French dynasty that had branches well in to the regions of Poland, Hungary, and the Latin Empire.

Inside Hunedoara Castle

   Vlad Draculea, better known as Vlad the Impaler, was the Prince of Wallachia in the south part of Romania.  He lived up to his name for he was known as a cruel punisher, frequently impaling his victims which would always result in death.  He was only 17 years old when he ascended the throne in Wallachia, eventually becoming greedy enough to want to fight the Ottomans in order to protect and preserve his land of reign.  He allied with the Hungarians, finally launching a crusade againt the Ottomans which resulted in the impalement of over 23,000 Turks.  Leaving his calling card-the impaling stick-Vlad turned back but only to find the Ottoman troops ready to attack and capture him.  Vlad could not be subdued by the armies and his stepbrother Radu was left to fight the Ottoman troops.  The Hungarians gave up on Vlad and had one of their men, Matthias Cornivus, imprison Vlad in Hunedoara castle for crimes against the Turks.

Radu Draculea

Matthias Cornivus



   While at Hunedoara, Vlad continued his bizarre rituals of blood and torture, extending them to rodents, but making friends with the bats.  He continued to eat rare meat that still had blood remaining in it.  During the twentieth century, the castle was restored and turned into a museum.  Visitors can walk through the different  rooms and turrets and hear an occasional mysterious laugh that seems to come from beyond.  Like many castles, the Hundoara is haunted, but it is the ghost of Vlade the Impaler that haunts it.

Vlad's Burial Spot

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