Vampires

Mighty_Emperor

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Seems ther has been some number crunching to show that vampires are impossible but someone else has looked at the numbers again and suggested a single vampire slayer would help maintain a vampire population at around 500:

www.collisiondetection.net/mt/archives/ ... s_pro.html

Pity we don't know of any real life vampire hunters.

None.
 

Semyaz

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Mighty_Emperor said:
Seems ther has been some number crunching to show that vampires are impossible but someone else has looked at the numbers again and suggested a single vampire slayer would help maintain a vampire population at around 500:

www.collisiondetection.net/mt/archives/ ... s_pro.html

Pity we don't know of any real life vampire hunters.

None.
The numbers would only grow impossibly out of control (if no vampire hunter is involved) if the vampire bite converts the victim into a vampire, even if they die... as suggested what happens in Buffy...!!

But if the bite does not convert (at least in every instance) then the mathematics are surely moot... although there probably would be a lot of victims assuming the vampires need regular feedings on blood!!
 

many_angled_one

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That is a terribly simplistic paper on the subjects listed. Still, I suppose it was supposed to be a look at "movie" ghosts, vampires etc. The zombie section was interesting though for the puffer fish story.
 

MrRING

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A pretty well done site:

http://www.thecovenorganization.com/
Welcome Vampires, Vampyres, Otherkin, and those interested in them! The Coven Organization has always been dedicated to the prosperity and preservation of the Vampire community and culture. Today, The Coven is an online vampire research and news portal, and a haven for all dark creatures. In short: Resources for an Esoteric Education.

This site offers many things that may be of interest to you: classic literature, essays, prose/poetry, paintings, movies, designs and other aesthetics from the Vampire community. Historical publishings and research papers published regarding vampire folklore, articles from community members addressing various present-day vampire-related issues.
 

OldTimeRadio

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Just this afternoon I finished reading THE EMBRACE: A TRUE VAMPIRE STORY, by Aphrodite Jones (New York: Pocket Books, 1999), the story of the "Kentucky Vampire Clan" which raised so much hell, and wholly negative news coverage, during November and December, 1996.

I'd saved a lot of newspaper coverage on young Rod Ferrell's openly blood-drinking "dark vampire army," but Ms. Jones' book goes behind those newspaper clippings and magazine tearsheets and answers most of my lingering questions.

This was the first time I've "met" Rod's mother, Sondra Gibson Ferrell. If you think Rod Ferrel was a piece of work, you should meet Mom.

One of the things I learned was that there were three or four different blood-sharing vampire "covens" operating between Eustis, Florida and Murray, Kentucky, in 1996, and that all of them seem to have been outgrowths of DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS and VAMPIRE: THE MASQUERADE. Now I have NEVER condemned either game, but they do sometimes seem to do a job on certain highly-impressionable and already unstable individuals....by no means all of them adolescents.

As they sure as hell seem to have done in this case.
 

many_angled_one

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The thing with these games, both of which I have played quite a lot, is that they enable people with like minds to group together and engage in a shared fantasy world. They could just as easily have had a film club and run a series of vampire films and start the same way but with role playing games you act yourself as a vampire which I suppose can get them into the whole thing.
But as always...if you are that unstable already...
 

Pietro_Mercurios

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In a busy, modern World, where most thinking comes pre-packaged and pre-digested, learning to use your imagination can be dangerous.
 

OldTimeRadio

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I have personally witnessed deep friendships, among mature adults, of twenty or more years' duration, permanently break up over a single DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS game.
 

Pietro_Mercurios

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OldTimeRadio said:
I have personally witnessed deep friendships, among mature adults, of twenty or more years' duration, permanently break up over a single DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS game.
I can remember when every episode of Batman (the 1960s TV series, with Adam West and Burt Ward), was prefaced with warnings to remember that only Batman and Robin could climb up walls and jump off buildings and that they were only comic book characters. Apparently, a few kids were trying to do the stunts for real.

Obviously, not enough people played, 'let's pretend' and too many sat slumped passively, in front of the magic goggle box, soaking it all in by osmosis, when they were kids.
 

OldTimeRadio

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Pietro_Mercurios said:
I can remember when every episode of Batman (the 1960s TV series, with Adam West and Burt Ward), was prefaced with warnings to remember that only Batman and Robin could climb up walls and jump off buildings and that they were only comic book characters. Apparently, a few kids were trying to do the stunts for real.
We didn't get that warning in the States.

Obviously, not enough people played, 'let's pretend' and too many sat slumped passively, in front of the magic goggle box, soaking it all in by osmosis, when they were kids.
Except that these were all adults almost encyclopaedically literate in both fantasy fiction and science fiction. One of them was in fact a published science fiction novelist.
 

Pietro_Mercurios

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OldTimeRadio said:
...

Obviously, not enough people played, 'let's pretend' and too many sat slumped passively, in front of the magic goggle box, soaking it all in by osmosis, when they were kids.
Except that these were all adults almost encyclopaedically literate in both fantasy fiction and science fiction. One of them was in fact a published science fiction novelist.
If only they'd spent more time out of the house, playing, cowboys'n'indians, soldiers, or doctors and nurses, as kids, instead of sitting indoors, ruining their eyes and filling their heads with Amazing Stories.

After all, look at what happened to Don Quixote. :(
 

OldTimeRadio

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Pietro_Mercurios said:
If only they'd spent more time out of the house, playing, cowboys'n'indians....
The female science fiction novelist I mentioned was also an experienced equestrian who target-shot black powder weapons from galloping horseback.

Ever notice there are some days you just can't win? <g>
 

Pietro_Mercurios

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OldTimeRadio said:
Pietro_Mercurios said:
If only they'd spent more time out of the house, playing, cowboys'n'indians....
The female science fiction novelist I mentioned was also an experienced equestrian who target-shot black powder weapons from galloping horseback.

Ever notice there are some days you just can't win? <g>
How did she feel about windmills?
 

many_angled_one

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I have personally witnessed deep friendships, among mature adults, of twenty or more years' duration, permanently break up over a single DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS game.
*shrugs* the same can happen over anything, on the flip side I have watched deep friendships grow over said games. I take it people were getting too attached to their fictional characters? D&D, Vampire: The Masquerade, MMORPG's like World of Warcraft...it's all the same when you can't separate characters from players.
Some people just get too involved in their fantasy worlds...it's almost like they are running away from the mundanity of real life and their real selves to embrace a fantasy where they are different, where life and the world is different. I suppose the difference between rpg's and book or film is that it is more personally immersive, but all you have to do is to look at the amount of goths obsessed with Anne Rice to see how their psyche can be affected by fiction, image and vampiric romantiscisim.
I suppose we are all influenceable given the right stimuli.
 

OldTimeRadio

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many_angled_one said:
*shrugs* the same can happen over anything....
I wasn't condemning the game, merely pointing out that it CAN have a deleterious effect not only on adolescents but on mature adults as well.

...it's all the same when you can't separate characters from players. Some people just get too involved in their fantasy worlds...it's almost like they are running away from the mundanity of real life and their real selves to embrace a fantasy where they are different, where life and the world is different.
In the case of the "Kentucky Vampire Klan," mentioned above, that led to a double murder (in Florida), a death penalty conviction, a life sentence with no hope of parole, and several other lengthy prison sentences.

....but all you have to do is to look at the amount of goths obsessed with Anne Rice to see how their psyche can be affected by fiction, image and vampiric romantiscisim.
It's remarkable that you bring that up. The "Kentucky Vampire Klan" committed its murders while on the way (in two stolen cars) to New Orleans to meet Anne Rice! (Ms. Rice, please understand, was entirely unaware of the prospective visit.)
 

tilly50

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When I was a child I was scared stiff of a grave in our church yard that had iron railings around it. It was partly set into a wall and the railings went around the other three sides. I was convinced that this was to keep the occupant in! Most of the iron railings in our vilage had been rooted up to go to the "war effort" years ago, but these remained.

About the same time I was woken up night after night by wailings and howling outside my bedroom window. I know now that it was local cats, but then..

A neighbouring village churchyard was full of those tabletop tombs and most of these were cracked with age. I was wary of them as I again thought that the desceased were trying to get out.

To me the idea of the un-dead was feasable, I had never at that time read or heard of vampires or zombies but I had by the age of 5 a definite fear of the physical dead coming back to life and trying to do injury to the living (mainly me).

When I got older and I read about vampires I realised that they were what I had feared for so long. Since the books I read were fiction I assumed that vampires were fictional too and the fear went.

Later experiences taught me that perhaps I was too dismissive and that there are possiblities within the sphere of the vampire.
 

OldTimeRadio

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tilly50 said:
When I was a child I was scared stiff of a grave in our church yard that had iron railings around it. It was partly set into a wall and the railings went around the other three sides. I was convinced that this was to keep the occupant in!
Are you certain it wasn't? The origin of the tombstone is supposed to have been a large weight added to the grave to keep the dead from coming back.

Vampires were the very last of my childhood bogies to stagger off into the lands of folklore and fiction. But when I afterwards discovered the "vampire plague" which seems to have boiled through Central and Easten Europe during the second quarter of the 18th Century, and apparently extended tendrils even to the North American Colonies, they were also the very first to come back.
 

Pietro_Mercurios

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I'm more worried about Marvel superhero zombies, these days!

Not to mention World War Hulk. :(
 

wembley8

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OldTimeRadio said:
The origin of the tombstone was as a large weight to keep the dead from coming back.
That sounds like wildly unlikely folk myth - or do you have a source for it?

Isn't it a lot more probable that large stones (as opposed to small grave markers) were there to stop scavengers from digging up bodies and nibbling them?
 

OldTimeRadio

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wembley8 said:
That sounds like wildly unlikely folk myth - or do you have a source for it?
Not any longer. I read this some time before November, 1958, because that's when my Mother's Mother died and the story/myth/whatever was "old news" to me then. (I turned 17 in September, 1958.)

I've edited a qualifier into my original post - "is supposed to have been."
 

many_angled_one

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Sadly the origins of tombstones are one of those things whose original use is permenantly lost in antiquity. Was it to stop scavengers, marking the burial site, a sign of respect, or for stopping the dead from returning? I doubt we will ever really know, probably it was a mix of several. Sometimes it was to keep out the grave robbers and desecraters as well.
I know as very young kids we were innately *sure* of the existance of ghosts, the undead etc and that seems to be a running theme in almost, if not all, every culture, ancient to modern.
 

OldTimeRadio

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Similarly, the opinion I've heard expressed by anthropologists, that the reason our prehistoric ancestors rubbed red ochre into the flesh of corpses was a vain attempt to restore life to the dead.

But our ancestors apparently performed this ritual for thousands of years.

How stupid do we think they were?
 

many_angled_one

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How stupid do we think they were?
For a lot of historians, anthropologists, archaeologists the answer is apparently that they were all primitive and inherintly stupidly superstitious.

Sorry, it's a pet peeve of mine. If they don't know why our ancestors did something it inevitably ends up as being because of religion, magic or superstition over any practical considerations. I remember watching a tv programme a few years back about extensive neolithic/bronze age copper mines in the South of England. They found remains of food in the mines next to mined out copper veins and surmised this was because ancient man believed they had to feed the earth to make the copper grow back. I say it was a lazy miner's packed lunch. They found piles of stones inside the mines and said they were piled up as some sort of shrine. I say it was quite reasonably a tool store to save them traipsing back all the way outside to get another.
 

OldTimeRadio

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The purpose of trepanning skulls in prehistoric times is said to have been to "let the evil spirits out."

But if that's true, mustn't modern cranial surgery be for the same purpose?

I suspect that archaeologists from the far future will excavate 20th and 21st Century bathrooms and decide that flush toilets were shrines for the deposit of votive offerings.
 

Creamstick1

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many_angled_one said:
If they don't know why our ancestors did something it inevitably ends up as being because of religion, magic or superstition over any practical considerations.
While trying to chart our family history with my Dad, we recently discovered church documents relating to an ancestor of ours who was repeatedly fined and rebuked by the kirk in the mid 19th century for fathering children with quite a number of the married women of the Orkneys.

Seriously, the number is staggering! This guy spread so much seed around that I wouldn't be surprised if every tree on the islands bore some kind of resemblance to him - his sprem must be like pollen up there!

I'd be even less suprised to find a DNA match with myself and every single person born there since his time.
 

BIg_Slim

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I always thought the first legend about a vampire
was vlad the impaler thats where bram stoker got his idea apperntly.
I was surfing the web and came across this on an Irish ghost site.

Abhartach

Location: Glenullen - General area, Abhartach's final resting place marked by a large stone with a thorn tree growing up from the side
Type: Vampire
Date / Time: Fifth century
Further Comments: In a battle for the throne, the warrior Cathrain killed his rival Abhartach. Abhartach, however, returned from the grave two days later and preyed on the locals. Cathrain once again killed the undead fiend, but two days later, Abhartach came back and continued his attacks. Cathrain discussed the problem with druids, who told him to stab his adversary through the heart with a weapon made of yew. This he did, and Abhartach never returned.

The tale is from the 5th century a lot older than vlad :)
anyone else know of a vampire story older than vlad?
 

LordRsmacker

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Bram Stoker got the name Dracula from Vlad Tepes for his vampire tale, but I'd imagine that the fear of the dead returning to prey on the living is as old as mankind.
 

LaurenChurchill

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I recall reading a few legends about vampires that were much older than Vlad the Impaler. I had a couple of books on vampires when I was little (I wanted to be one - no kidding). I can't remember any of them now, but I do recall that there were a few different kinds, depending on the culture, and that the one I found most disturbing didn't bite you and drink your blood, it stabbed you with it's pointy, hollow tongue and sucked the blood out of you. The image of that scared the crap out of me.
 

stu neville

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There's a lot of old legends from all over the place that have vampiric traits. Romania and the rest of eastern Europe do have enduring and ancient motifs, but there are many varieties - most can't fly, not all drink blood, few can shape-shift and in the main are more akin to zombies, often motivated by revenge or to right an old wrong. In some of the legends they behave more like ghosts, and indeed in some mythologies ghosts, zombies, ghouls and vampires are all lumped together as "the undead". In Romany tradition, the undead are more likely to curse a family with bad luck, and follow them in the shadows, just out of sight but nonetheless present. they may even take the form of an incubus or succubus, which in themselves are archetypes that goes back to pre-history.

Staying in the ancient world, the Babylonians had a demon called Lilitu who drank blood of children by night: she eventually morphed into the Hebrew Lilith, who was Adam's first wife until she descended to become queen of the demons. She and her daughters were supposed to attack people of any age to steal their life-force, though this is usually interpreted as their blood. There was a type of ghoul in Indian mythology that possessed and reanimated corpses, again to walk around by night, that were purported during the day to hang from trees or cave ceilings like bats.

The Greeks had a very old tradition, observed until quite recently, of burying certain corpses believed to be at risk of becoming vampires on small deserted islands as it is believed they cannot cross moving water.

For Dracula, Stoker amalgamated bits of each to create his character - a kind of super vampire. Any suave charisma can be traced back about as far as that - sophisticated vampires prior to Stoker are invariably demons who happen to have vampiric traits, and so are operating on a completely different level. Forget the cape and civilised discourse and "the cheeldren of the night" - a shambling, snarling mute would be closer to the mark. Basically, if you were to make a vampire movie, but stuck to original sources rather than post-Stoker, you'd probably end up with something that looked a lot more like Dawn of the Dead than Interview with the Vampire.
 
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