Thursday, April 6, 2017

Bizarre facts about Vlad III Basarab, nicknamed, Vlad Tepes (the Impaler), or  Dracula.

1. Bram Stoker didn’t make up the word Dracula for his book. DRACULA in Walachian language means DEVIL.  His father, Vlad II Basarab, was a member of a secret society known as the Order of the Dragon, which fought the Ottoman Empire. He was so proud to be a member that he had his name changed to “Dracul,” Romanian for “Dragon.”  Vlad III also got involved in the Order, which prompted him to change his own name to Dracula.

2. The name Tepes is the Romanian for “the Impaler.” It was a title given to him posthumously. Vlad III earned his “Impaler” nickname by killing thousands of Turks and others by the grisly method that he learned during his teens, when he was a political hostage of the Ottoman Empire in Egrigoz.

3. When Vlad’s father was called to a diplomatic meeting in 1442 with Sultan Murad II, he brought his young sons Vlad III and Radu along, having no idea that they fell in a trap. All three were arrested and held hostage. The elder Vlad was released but he had to leave his sons behind.
4.  It was during his hostage years that Vlad witnessed the impalement of his Ottomans' enemies. According to historical accounts, Vlad suffered much at the hands of the Ottomans. He was tortured for part of that time, and was locked up in an underground prison.  However, his younger brother, Radu, caught the eye of the sultan's son. Radu was released and converted to Islam, and he was allowed into the Ottoman royal court.

5.  In the 1400s, the region of Wallachia was under constant threat from its neighbors, the Turks. Vlad III sent an army to push the Turks out of his land. Eventually, though the Turks forced Vlad into a retreat—he was not done. As he retreated, he burned down his own villages along the way so that the Turkish army would have nowhere to rest. He even went so far as poisoning his own wells just so that the incoming Turkish army wouldn’t have the satisfaction.

6. When Ottoman diplomatic envoys had an audience with Vlad in 1459, the diplomats declined to remove their hats, citing a religious custom. Commending them on their religious devotion, Vlad ensured that their hats would forever remain on their heads by having the hats nailed to the diplomats' skulls.

7. Vlad tested whether his technique for dissuading theft or dishonesty worked.  He had a valuable gold bowl placed near a river crossing. The rule was that anybody could drink out of it, but it could not leave the square under any circumstances.  The bowl stayed put! It’s believed that during this time about 60,000 people lived in the town—yet during his entire reign, the priceless cup was never touched.  

8. Reports state that Dracula’s body was buried at a cemetery in the Snagov Monastery, outside Bucharest, where one of his brothers was a monk. But there are conflicting reports - some that his body was never actually found there, while others say that his possible remains were indeed found, but then disappeared. It is believed that the archaeologists searching in Snagov, (a commune outside Bucharest), in 1931, found Dracula’s remains. The contents were transferred to the History Museum in Bucharest, but they later disappeared without a trace, leaving the mysteries of the real Prince Dracula unanswered.

 It’s pretty likely that his body was just robbed at some point; as royalty, he would likely have been buried with treasure, making his grave a good target for grave robbers. And then there’s the other theory about why his body was never found: because he’s Dracula.

                            Dracula’s Mistress
Publisher – City Lights Press
Genre – Paranormal historical/light romance

From the day that the powerful, brave and merciless Vlad III Basarab, a descendant of the Draculesti family—better known to most people as the infamous vampire Dracula—ascends the throne, he knows only battles, betrayal and intrigue.

Evil grips the town of Targoviste, capital residence of Walachia. The secrets behind the stone walls of the palace are as dark and violent as a winter’s night, as terrifying as the prince’s deeds. Dead bodies, drained of blood and missing their little finger keep appearing in the streets at night.

Lovely, smart, determined, Angela Oltenescu ignores all the aggressive rumors and her mother’s warning regarding Vlad. Will she suffer the consequences of falling in love with a man nicknamed Dracula by his enemies—an infamous creature of the night?

Rich, sly, treacherous,  Marin Craioveanu, a powerful landlord, craves the same woman loved by Vlad. Marin's hatred toward the prince will make him an ally to Handsome Radu, Vlad’s brother and Sultan’s friend, ready to sell the country to the Ottomans to get rid of his rival.

Dracula’s Mistress will awe legions of fans of Gothic literature, paranormal and historical fiction
Buy link   Only 0.99$

Author Bio and links
Carmen Stefanescu resides in Romania, the native country of the infamous vampire  Count Dracula  where, for about 50 years of communist dictatorship, just speaking about God, faith, reincarnation or paranormal phenomena could have led someone to great trouble - the psychiatric hospital if not to prison.
High-school teacher of English and German in her native country, and mother of two daughters, Carmen Stefanescu survived the grim years of oppression  by escaping in a parallel world, that of the books. Reading was, is and will always be her greatest hobby.
She has dreamed since childhood to become a writer, but many of the things she wrote remained just drawer projects. The fall of the Ceausescu’s regime in 1989, and the opening of the country to the world meant a new beginning for her. She started publishing. Poems first, and then prose. Both in English.
She likes to blend genres and thus she writes paranormal stories with a smidgen of mystery, history and romance. The reader will find suspense, dark themes, adventure, danger as well as sweet revenge. She calls her stories  “gothic” romance. Her writing focuses on rebirth, past life regression, karmic retribution.
                   Carmen joined the volunteer staff at Marketing For Romance Writers Author blog and is the coordinator of #Thursday13 posts.
Author Carmen Stefanescu's Links

Other books by Carmen: Till-Life-Do-Us-Part