Dracula by Bram Stoker – , Gothic novel by Bram Stoker, published in 1897, that was the most popular literary work derived from vampirelegends and became the basis for an entire genre of literature and film.
Dracula comprises journal entries, letters, and telegrams written by the main characters. It begins with Jonathan Harker, a young English lawyer, as he travels to Transylvania. Harker plans to meet with Count Dracula, a client of his firm, in order to finalize a property transaction. When he arrives in Transylvania, the locals react with terror after he discloses his destination: Castle Dracula.
Though this unsettles him slightly, he continues onward. The ominous howling of wolves rings through the air as he arrives at the castle. When Harker meets Dracula, he acknowledges that the man is pale, gaunt, and strange. Harker becomes further concerned when, after Harker cuts himself while shaving, Dracula lunges at his throat. Soon after, Harker is seduced by three female vampires, from whom he barely escapes. He then learns Dracula’s secret—that he is a vampire and survives by drinking human blood. Harker correctly assumes that he is to be the count’s next victim. He attacks the count, but his efforts are unsuccessful. Dracula leaves Harker trapped in the castle and then, along with 50 boxes of dirt, departs for England.
Meanwhile, in England, Harker’s fiancée Mina is visiting a friend named Lucy Westenra, who has recently gotten engaged after declining a number of suitors. One night Mina must search for Lucy, as she has fallen back into her old habit of sleepwalking.
When Mina finds her outside near a graveyard, there appears to be a shape hovering over her for a split second. Mina notices two small red marks on Lucy’s neck and assumes that she must have inadvertently pricked Lucy with a pin. Over the following days, Lucy falls ill and is at times seen through a window next to a bat.
Mina is worried, but she is called away once she receives correspondence from Jonathan. Lucy goes into the care of Dr. Seward and Dr. Van Helsing, who, after a number of failed blood transfusions, decide further action is needed. They then drape Lucy and her room with garlic—a strategy used to ward off vampires. Lucy, however, soon dies.
After her death, many report the appearance of a creature who is attacking children in the area. When Jonathan (who was able to escape Count Dracula’s castle) and Mina return to England, now as a married couple, Jonathan’s accounts of Dracula lead Van Helsing to believe that Lucy contracted vampirism from the count and is the one tormenting the children. In order to prevent her from further killing, they unearth her corpse, stake her through the heart, cut off her head, and stuff her mouth with garlic.
Now that Lucy has been taken care of, the group decides to track down Count Dracula and the 50 boxes of dirt he brought with him. According to lore, Dracula needs the dirt of his home country to remain healthy. The group attempts to destroy the boxes so that Dracula has no means of regeneration. One night, amid feelings of uneasiness toward Mina’s recent behaviour, Van Helsing and Seward break into her room to find Jonathan unconscious and Mina drinking blood from a gash in Dracula’s chest.
The vampire disappears and returns to Transylvania only to be followed by the determined group. They find him buried in the final box of dirt and promptly cut off his head and stab him through his heart. Dracula crumbles into dust. The vampire hunters also lose one of their own, Quincey Morris, during the expedition