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Vlad Dracula

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Vlad Dracula

Vlad the Impaler, a.k.a. Vlad III, Dracula, Drakulya, or Tepes, was born in late 1431, in the citadel of Sighisoara, Transylvania, the son of Vlad II or Dracul, a military governor, appointed by Holy Roman Emperor Sigismund. Vlad Dracul was also a knight in the Order of the Dragon, a secret fraternity created in 1387 by the Emperor, sworn to uphold Christianity and defend the empire against the Islamic Turks. Transylvania, along with Moldavia, and Wallachia, are now joined together as Romania. The name Dracul can be interpreted in two ways, the first translation from Romanian would be "Dragon", but it sometimes also means "Devil". Vlad was not called Tepes, which means ""spike" in Romanian, until after his death; instead, he was known as Vlad Dracula, the added "a" meaning "son of", so essentially, throughout his life, he was known as the "son of the Devil".

While growing up with such a name would normally present problems for most of us, Vlad certainly did not seem to mind, as he really did live up to his title; but before we look upon the exploits of the son, let us learn a bit more about the father. In 1436, Vlad Dracul took over the throne of Wallachia, taking up residence in the palace of Tirgoviste. It was there young Vlad Dracula would get his first taste of the opulent lifestyle, and perhaps also where the beast within would begin to grow. Merely two years later, in a strange turn of events, Vlad II betrayed the Order of the Dracul, forming an alliance with the Turks. He even went as far as allowing Sultan Murad II to keep his two sons, Vlad Dracula, and his younger brother Radu, as "insurance" that he would not plan to strike against the Turks.

In the winter of 1447, Vlad Dracul was assassinated in a coup orchestrated by one of his relatives, John Hunyadi, who had devoted his life to fighting the Ottoman

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