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Dracula

[drak-yuh-luh]
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noun
  1. (italics) a novel (1897) by Bram Stoker.
  2. Count, the central character in this novel: the archetype of a vampire.
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Origin of Dracula

Low German Dracol, Dracole, Dracle a by-name of the Wallachian prince Vlad II, “the Impaler” (1431–76); orig. of the name is disputed, but it has long been popularly associated with Romanian dracul the devil (drac devil (< Latin dracō dragon) + -ul definite article)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Word Origin and History for dracula, count

Dracula

n.

the vampire, from in Bram Stoker's novel (1897). It was a surname of Prince Vlad II of Wallachia (d.1476), and means in Romanian "son of Dracul," literally "the dragon," from the name and emblem taken by Vlad's father, also named Vlad, c.1431 when he joined the Order of the Dragon, founded 1418 by Sigismund the Glorious of Hungary to defend the Christian religion from the Turks and crush heretics and schismatics.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

dracula, count in Culture

Dracula, Count

The title character of Dracula, a novel from the late nineteenth century by the English author Bram Stoker. Count Dracula, a vampire, is from Transylvania, a region of eastern Europe now in Romania. He takes his name from a bloodthirsty nobleman of the Middle Ages. To lay the vampire Dracula's spirit to rest, one must drive a wooden stake through his heart.

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Note

Count Dracula was played in films by the Hungarian-born actor Bela Lugosi, whose elegant, exotic accent has become associated with the character.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.