A misty fog hung in the cool air, obscuring the winding path and painting the night a blurry blue-gray. Time passed uncounted as silence reigned, the graveyard still and quiet as if trapped within a fallen cloud.
Okay, maybe I should have started with “It was a dark and stormy night…” but I was afraid Snoopy would get me for copyright infringement. Has anyone ever heard of a vampire story beginning on a stormy—or even rainy—night?
Regardless, vampire legends have persisted for centuries, millennia, in fact. The word “vampire” wasn’t introduced until the 18th century when Western European legends became more widespread.
Some of the oldest legends originate from Ancient Persia and Babylonia. One of the most prevalent legends is somewhat based in religion. There are references or a reference at least, that tell(s) of Samael and Lilith in Hebrew Bible, Isaiah 34:14, but it's pretty sketchy. There are quite a few scholarly debates going on about the whole thing. There's something similar in the Songs of the Sage found as part of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
According to ancient lore, the blood-drinkers are the daughters of Lilith. Lilith was said to be Adam’s first wife who was created in the same way as Adam and thus wanted to be equal.
Since she was so difficult, she was either banished from the Garden of Eden or left of her own free will--that's kind of fuzzy-- but it turns out that she mated with the Archangel Samael and refused to return.
All right, ladies. Here's where we take a minute and consider the ramifications. Angel sex is apparently far and above regular sex. (no pun intended--honest) Do you think it's the wings? Or the heavenly body? (pun definitely intended)
It seems that God was offended by the union and destroyed all of her children. In her pain and rage, Lilith vowed from that time on to feed off the children of Adam for the rest of eternity making her the mother of all vampires.
Wow. Now, that's how you hold a grudge!
But, and I don't know if you noticed this, if God destroyed all of her children, how did she turn them into vampires? Let me go see what I missed.
She is mentioned in the epic poem
Okay, some--several --sources introduce Cain as the one who joined with Lilith. She apparently showed him how powerful blood could be. Separately, they're both referred to as (respectively) the father and mother of demons. Some
While Vampire enthusiasts refer to Genesis 4:10-15 to indicate how possible it is that Cain joined Lilith, Lilith herself is pretty controversial. She's not actually mentioned in the King James Version of the Bible.
A lot of folks, scholars and vampire enthusiast alike, suggest that Samael had an affair with Eve and that's where Cain came from. Any way you choose look at it, though, he's almost universally credited with being the first vampire.
Unless you count Judas. That's a whole different story, but frankly, it makes a little sense-- not much--but some Some say that he was cursed for betraying Jesus, as was his entire family. When he committed suicide, he wasn't allowed the peace of death, and in the act of accepting the silver coins for shedding innocent blood, he made his line unable to tolerate silver.
Of course, there are other vampire myths that blame the Greek or Roman gods of old, too.
By and large, psychologists believe that the vampire myth began as a way of dealing with the immoral behavior of a loved one, or in some cases, an inability to have children. The Malaysian vampire, called the langsuyar, is said to originate from a young mother who's baby was stillborn. After that, she flew away and started attacking babies and drinking their blood.
That's pretty much the same story told in the Greek legend, only their vampire is called a lamiai. Eastern European vampire tales speak of how the vampires arise from the graves of the recently dead. They come back to attack their still-living family members, close friends, and various loved ones. Sometimes, they were believed to be the cause of a wasting sickness that was remarkably similar to tuberculosis. Psychologist nowadays say that these stories are the result of guilt along with the normal grieving process.
Well, either way, we have Bram Stoker and his famous book
But that's only the tip of the media iceberg, isn't it?
When I was little, Barnabas Collins was lurking about in
Well, whether you're Team Edward or Team Jacob, it won't matter to
That's okay with me, because while Gary Oldman might be Sirius Black in the Wizarding World, he'll always be
Still, old or young, this is how I remember Dracula these days: