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The exact origins of Vampires are unclear. Dr Van Helsing mentions that the cult of vampirism may have begun with ancient pagan worship of demons and devils. Dracula is believed to be the first Vampire, having been reffered to as the most evil and terrible Vampire of all time by Lorimmer Van Helsing and the "fountain head" by Father Sandor, he was at the very least the most powerful and worshipped Vampire of his era. There were many different kinds of Vampires with Professor Hieronymus Grost a professional Vampire hunter stating that there were as many types of vampire "as beasts of prey". Many characteristics that Vampire species shared were Immortality, super human strength, and a demonic thirst for human blood, many were also killed by a wooden stake though the heart, though one species of vampire was both immune to this weakness and drained the youth rather than blood from its victims. They all had the ability to make people into Vampire like themselves through either biting or making the person consume their blood. Not all people they bite or kill become Vampires only those they wish to become Vampires will become one. Not that many people were aware of the existence of vampires. Many dismissed them as "old wives tales". Several villages however lived in fear of vampires such as Dracula, the Karnstein family and Count Mitterhouse. Others were not only aware of their existence but actively sought them out such as the Van Helsing Family and Captain Kronos. Some were aware they existed but did not actively hunt them such as Secker, churches knew that vampires were real though they also did not always actively hunt them. Some even served Vampires for a number of reasons including,a desire to become a Vampire and therefore gain immortality (Johnny Alucard), blinded by loyalty for person before they became a vampire (Baroness Meinster), or being placed under the thrall of a Vampire and being made to serve it (Klove). Whatever the reason these servants often proved crucial to vampires as they helped to protect them during the daylight hours when they were vulnerable. Vampires were generally bloodthirsty monsters who took a sadistic pleasure in making their victims suffer. Shown to be incapable of compassion or love, some such as the Golden Vampires were even shown to be as single minded as animals literally existing for nothing but the kill. However there were a very few exceptions to this, Baroness Meinster for example, was filled with self loathing after becomming a vampire and begged Van Helsing to stake her. Carmilla Karnstein also tried very hard to fight her vampiric instincts but Count Karnsteins hold over her was too strong and she tried to kill the man she loved. Vampires could often be brought back from the dead through rituals and black mass usually performed by servants. In the 20th century there were still those who worshipped and those who hunted vampires, though the belief and study of the creatures was still relatively obscure
Powers and abilitiesEdit
All types of vampires possess advanced strength.
- Dracula easily overpowers his servant Klove throwing him over the battlements of his castle as though he were a child
- Dracula easily overpowers anyone who faces him in unarmed combat including trained Vampire hunter Dr Van Helsing. He has also displayed other great feats of strength including snapping a sword in half with his bare hands and smashing a solid glass window with his fist.
- Johnny Alucard despite only being a Vampire for a few days was able to overpower Vampire hunter Lorrimer Van Helsing until Lorrimer used both sunlight and a bible to scare him off. Later in their fight Lorrimer hits Johnny over the head with a pool cue, not only does Johnny not even flinch when it hits him but the pool cue breaks in half over his head.
- Count Mitterhouse defeats an entire mob of people that attack him single handedly. He throws several, who attack at once away easily and rips the throat out of another with his teeth.
- Emile and the other vampires of the circus of knights can kill people instantly with a quick bite to the neck. Emile also defeats several people who attack him at once, armed with cross bows and flaming torches.
- The Golden Vampires also frequently display superhuman strength, and are described as "immensly strong" by Van Helsing.
"Foolish man a bullet cannot harm me"
Vampires are able to survive and shrug off injuries that would kill an ordinary human.
- Vampires cannot be killed by guns or bullets, unless it is a silver bullet. Father Sandor states that it would "do no good" to shoot Dracula, while Emile withstood a blast at point blank range in the chest from a double barrel shotgun.
- Ordinary metal cannot harm most vampires, at least one species could be killed by a blessed metal sharp piercing their heart. Dracula was impaled by an iron railing, which did not even cause him any pain, while count mitterhouse was stabbed in the stomache with a spear which merely bounced off of his flesh. However a metal sword can be used to decapitate certain vampires, which is how General Spielsdorf killed Carmilla Karnstein.
- Certain Vampires can not be killed by fire
- Helga a Vampire from the circus of knights was able to withstand a bite from a puma on her hand, not even recieving any marks or cuts.
Vampires have demonstrated above average healing on a number of occassions.
- After being staked by Paul, Dracula is not only able to survive because Paul is an atheist and does not perform the final rites but he instantly heals and recovers from the wound. He also instantly heals from being run through with a massive Iron railing.
- Emile also healed instantly after being shot in the shoulder with an arrow and the stomache with a shotgun.
"Don't look into his eyes"
- Dracula regularly hypnotises people into obeying his every command through his stare. Only those with the strongest will can withstand his power even in death Dracula claimed to still be able to control his servants claiming that "it was my will" as to why Johnny Alucard had ressurected him.
- Count Karnstein was able to place Carmilla under his thrall.
- Another Karnstein was able to hypnotise her children completely.
- Dracula was able to place bats and other animals under his control. He commanded bats to decimate an entire village remove crosses from people and mutilate a priests face. Emile also demonstrated the power to summon bats aswell.
All Vampires are immortal. They do not age and are immune to all diseases, it is for this reason that many people worship and serve Vampires as they hope to become Immortals.
- Van Helsing suspects that Dracula may have lived for five or six centuries.
- Johnny Alucard wishes to become a Vampire so that he can gain the power of immortality.
- Baron Meinster claims that he will preserve Mariane's beauty forever.
Certain vampires can change their shape, usually into animals.
- Baron Meinster and numerous other types of Vampires such as the Circus of Knights and the Golden Vampires can change into bats.
- The Circus of knights vampires can shapeshift into giant panthers.
- Dracula could assume the taoist monk Kai's form.
- The youth draining Vampire could assume the form of a giant bat.
Though they can be destroyed Vampires can also be brought back to unlife through a number of ways. ==
- Dracula could be brought back to life by spilling human blood on his remains, he could also be ressurected by a powerful black mass ritual.
- Count Karnstein performed a blood ritual which was able to bring Carmilla back from the dead.
- After being staked Count Mitterhouse declared that his killers "children will die" and that the town of Stattel would die to bring him back to life. Later his cousin Emile brought a plague to the town of Stattel and murdered the children of his killers which fullfilling the counts curse enabled him to return from the grave.
- Van Helsing believed that using the golden bat, the six remaining Vampires would be able to reincarnate the deceased Seventh Vampire.
- Dracula can climb the walls of his castle like a spider.
- The Circus of Knights Vampires were able to conjour up illusions real enough to drive the burgemaster of the town of stattel insane.
- The Presence of the Youth draining Vampire caused small animals such as toads to come back to life.
Weaknesses and LimitationsEdit
Most Vampires can be killed by a wooden stake driven directly through their heart. Two exceptions to this are, the youth draining vampire which can only be killed when a blessed piece of metal pierces their heart, and Dracula who though capable of being killed by a stake to the heart will only die if the last rites are performed after he has been staked.
A silver sharp driven directly through their heart will kill certain vampires such as the golden vampires and Dracula himself.
Holy items such as crosses and bibles will burn most types of vampires skin on contact as well as cause them tremoundous pain to look at. If used correctly holy items can actually destroy a vampire.
- By causing the sails of a windmill to form into a giant cross, the shadow of this cross fell on Baron Meinster and destroyed him.
- The power of a church once destroyed Dracula.
Holy water will also burn a Vampires skin like acid. The Golden Vampires are not scared by the Cross but the symbol of Buddha will have the same affect on them as the cross does on "European" Vampires. The Hawthorn tree which is a symbol of good as it provided Christ with his crown of Thorns is also able to slice through Certain Vampires skins easily. Lorrimer Van Helsing was able to destroy Dracula by luring him through one where his body was badly cut.
Direct Sunlight will destroy most Vampires instantly. Many species of Vampire must sleep during the day in their coffins, which is often why they require human servants as they are vulnerable in this state. While most Vampires are destroyed by sunlight the Karnsteins species of Vampires where able to move freely in the daytime, while Emile was able to move in the sunlight in his panther form but could not in his human form.
Clear running water could destroy at least one species of Vampire. In order for running water to destroy the vampire however its entire body had to be completely submerged in the water. Throwing a glass of ordinary water in a vampires face would not harm it.
- Father Sandor was able to destroy Dracula by shooting at the frozen lake around his feet causing him to tumble into the lake below where his body was completely submerged in the water.
- Johnny Alucard was destroyed when he fell into his shower (the sunlight was shinning on him which also contributed to his death)
- Dracula's brides were destroyed when the sprinklers system went off and they were covered in water.
Garlic has been mentioned as a minor detterent to certain Vampires though it has never actually been revealed what it does. Many experts dismiss Garlic with Lorrimer stating that it is not always reliable and Father Sandor telling a villager that the cloves of garlic would not keep Dracula out.
Different Types Of VampiresEdit
There were many different types of Vampires with different powers, weaknesses, appearances and even motivations. Though there no doubt thousands of different Vampires the following is a list of known species
The Vampire race that Dracula belonged to were the most common group of Vampires around Europe. They were vulnerable to the sun, holy items, could be killed by stakes and fireand decapitation , they also possessed hypnotic powers. Dracula was believed to be the first and most powerful of these vampires (or possibly all vampires)
The Vampire species that the Karnstein family belonged to could only be killed by a wooden stake through the heart or decapitation.
Baron Meinsters VampiresEdit
These Vampires had the same powers and abilities as Dracula's Vampires and weaknesses with the only difference being that these Vampires could change into bats. It is possible that Dr Ravna belonged to this group.
Circus of Knights VampireEdit
These Vampires of the circus of knights were vulnerable to crosses stakes through the heart and direct sunlight. They did not need to sleep during the day and could change into bats and giant panthers. These Vampires were able to have children. Count Mitterhouse had two children with the Witch Anna, it is not known if these Vampires could have children with an ordinary human or if it had to be with another supernatural creature such as a witch. They had an affinity for spells and magics and often lived with witches.
The Seven Golden Vampires were utterly hideous in appearance. Having the power to change into bats these were chinese Vampires, it is believed that each continent has its own set of Vampires as Van Helsing refers to "European Vampires" The Golden Vampires were scared off by holy items but rather than the cross it was instead the symbol of buddha.
Youth Draining VampireEdit
This Vampire was the most different species of Vampire. These Vampires drained youth from their victims rather than blood and could only be killed by a blessed piece of metal piercing their heart.
- All Vampire species have fangs.
- All Vampire species are immortal, have superhuman strength, durability and above average healing.
Vampires often lived together in packs and groups. On some occasions this was through choice such as The Circus of knights and Baron Meinsters consorts, whilst on other occasions it was because an older more powerful vampire gathered lesser members of its kind together as its minions through force such as Dracula and his brides. Vampire society's include
- Dracula and his minions, Dracula often gathered both Vampire, humans and other supernatural creatures as his servants. Dracula was shown to be a cruel master punishing his servants if they failed him,s uch as mutilating Kloves back burning one of his brides in a furnace. Often Dracula would kill or abandon his brides if he tired of them aswell. Despite this he still had more followers over the world than any other Vampire.
- Baron Meinster and his Vampire consorts and minions, which at one point included his own mother who he made into a vampire.
- The Circus of Knights, a large circus of Vampires and witches, they were led by the Vampire Emile and were affiliated with the bloodsucker Count Mitterhouse.
- The Karnstein family.
Behind the scenesEdit
The Vampires in the numerous Hammer Horror films series such as the Dracula film series the Karnstein film series and one off films such as the Kiss of the Vampire, Vampire Circus, and Captain Kronos - Vampire Hunter were not intended to take place in the same canon. However due the fact that Captain Kronos Vampire hunter states that there are as "many different vampires as beasts of prey", many fans believe that they take place in the same canon using this as an explanation for the various different types of vampires seen in the different film series. Evidence of them taking place in the same canon comes from the fact that the main Vampire villain in Captain Kronos Vampire Hunter is referred to as a Karnstein, and also that Dracula is referenced in the film Countess Dracula.
List of Hammer Vampire FilmsEdit
The Horror of Dracula
The Brides of Dracula
Dracula Prince of Dracula
Dracula has risen from the Grave
Taste the blood of Dracula
Scars of Dracula
Dracula AD 1972
The Satanic Rites of Dracula
The Legend of the Seven Golden Vampires
Kiss of the Vampire
Captain Kronos - Vampire Hunter
The Vampire Lovers
Lust for a Vampire
Twins of Evil