Dracula

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Dracula is a late-19th century story of a vampire, Count Dracula. In the book, the vampire journeys to England and is harried by a group of English vampire-hunters. Written in the form of a series of journal entries by various individuals, it is considered an early masterpiece of the horror genre.

Contents

[edit] Dramatis Personae

[edit] Count Vladimir Dracula

Count Dracula is the eponymous vampire of the book. He lives in a Transylvanian castle at the beginning of the book, but later moves to England, apparently enticed by the masses of humanity in London.

[edit] Lord Godalming

Arthur Holmwood begins the book as the heir to Lord Godalming, who eventually dies. His engagement to Lucy Westenra ends at the death of that lady, but he is forced to drive a stake through her heart after she becomes a vampire.

[edit] Jonathan Harker

Jonathan Harker begins the book as a clerk in a real estate agency. He travels to Transylvania to arrange the selling of a large English house to Count Dracula, but is imprisoned in the castle. He eventually escapes and marries his fiancee, Mina Murray

[edit] Mina Harker

The earliest journal entries in the novel make many mention of Wilhelmina Murray, the fiancee and eventual wife of Jonathan Harker, and also include several letters between her and Lucy Westenra. Eventually, Count Dracula's attack on Mrs. Harker provides the impetus for the main players to track the vampire down. Her quick wit and keen intelligence are also instrumental in the battle.

[edit] Quincy Morris

Native of Texas and an old friend of John Seward and Arthur Lord Godalming. Like them, he proposes to Lucy Westenra early in the book.

[edit] Mr. Renfield

An inmate at the insane asylum run by Dr. John Seward. Dr. Seward calls him a "zoophagous", eater of animals. He eats flies and spiders in an attempt to benefit from their life-force, and has a mysterious connection to Count Dracula.

[edit] John Seward

Runs an insane asylum that is coincidentally next to the house bought in England by Count Dracula. Proposes to Lucy Westenra early in the book but is rejected.

[edit] Van Helsing

Van Helsing is a doctor from the Netherlands; the first to diagnose the marks on Lucy Westenra's neck as the bite of a vampire. His several attempts to protect her go for naught, and he becomes the intellectual leader of the hunt for Count Dracula.

[edit] Lucy Westenra

Sweet and innocent Lucy Westenra accepts a marriage proposal early in the book from Lord Arthur Godalming, but is lured into the clutches of Count Dracula. She eventually becomes a vampire herself, and her redemption at the hands of Lord Godalming is one of the early climaxes of the book.

[edit] Annotations

(Page numbers from the Bantam Classic Paperback Edition)

  • P. 289 Such a face as would have become the face of Malvolio. Malvolio is the steward of Olivia's household in Shakespeare's play, Twelfth Night. He is tricked into displaying an inappropriate and fake smile.
  • P. 382 There are, or there may be, customs and octroi officers to pass. Octroi is a tax levied by the city on incoming goods.
  • P. 395 However, tonight she is more vif. vif is a French word meaning bright, or brisk.
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