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Ruthless Ruler Vlad the Impaler: Know How He Tortured That Inspired the Famous Book "Dracula"

Ruthless Ruler Vlad the Impaler: Know How He Tortured That Inspired the Famous Book "Dracula"

“ Ah, we men and women are like ropes drawn tight with strain that pull us in different ways. Then tears come, and like the rain on the ropes, they brace us up, until perhaps the strain becomes too great, and we break. But King Laugh comes like the sunshine, and he eases off the strain again, and we bear to go on with our labor, whatever it may be.”

This is one of the many grim quotes from Bram Stoker's Iconic novel “Dracula” which is still widely loved by horror manic people worldwide. But do you know Bram Stoker was inspired to write the widely popular vampire horror fiction after a ruthless ruler named Vlad III? We promise the story of Vlad III is even more compelling and brutal than its inspired novel Dracula.

Who was Vlad III?

Vlad III was deemed by the Romanians a national hero. Vlad III is still considered one of Wallachia's most respected and reputed rulers, known for fighting for Christians. Though the name of one of the cruelest rulers of all time is still associated with Vlad III, he remained one of Romania's most loved and revered rulers. He might be a terror-inducing man called Vlad the Impaler to his enemies and war prisoners, but to his people, he was a protector. Protector, yes! But also a murderer too.

Born to the ruler Vlad II Dracul who was born to unmarried parents of Mircea I of Wallachia in 1431. The mother of Vlad III is known in the fitting fashion of his father being born out of wedlock. But many historians still allude to the idea that Alexander I of Moldavia could be Vlad III’s mother. Vlad III was born in Sighisoara citadel and was called Vlad Tepes in the Saxon town of Sighisoara.

Horrific Encounters at a Young Age

Young Vlad III, at the age of eleven, had to watch his father surrender the rule to the Ottoman rulers in the invasion of Transylvania in 1442. The Ottoman ruler, Sultan Murad II, imprisoned them all, and though Vlad Dracul was released after a year, his young sons Vlad III and Radu were still detained. So that the Sultan could force Vlad Dracul’s hands. Thus the young heirs of the defeated kings were trained to be merciless warriors under the Ottoman’s harsh rule so that they would not later rebel against the empire. Radu the handsome, influenced by his upbringing, forged an intimate relationship with the ruler Sultan Mehmed II.

Vlad III was extremely against this newly forged bond of his brother with the Ottoman Empire. With his rising rage and hatred at the Ottoman empire for destroying his family and now brainwashing his brother Vlad III vowed to exact revenge against the Ottoman ruler. Vlad III threw himself into perfecting his warrior skills in hopes of revenge and spent every second of his life building his battle skills. Soon Vlad III turned into a ruthless soldier with the fire of payback burning in his heart. After witnessing the very barbarous attacks of the Ottoman Empire, Vlad III was set on revenge.

Vlad III: Ruthless Warrior and Lover

Vlad III was finally set free in 1447, after the accidental deaths of his father and elder brother Mircea who were supposedly buried alive, according to some historians. This was the last straw that pushed Vlad III off the edge, and he vowed he would annihilate the entirety of the remaining Ottoman rule.

Even though Vlad III became a ruthless warrior to enact his revenge, he was still very loving towards his children and immensely adored his three wives. Especially gorgeous Katharina Siegel supported Vlad III in his war against the Ottomans.

Rise of Vlad III to Power

Vlad III soon climbed his way to the throne and ruled from one of his fortresses, “Poenari”, strategically located, protecting him and his kingship and rule. The Poenari palace also became an impenetrable place that was very hard to conquer, thus solidifying Vlad III’s rule. Vlad III ruled with an iron fist set on protecting his citizens from another ruthless attack by the Ottomans. Vlad III slowly decked up his reputation as Vlad the Impaler with consistent efforts. His method of execution, impaling, was carried out in a horrific fashion leaving his victims alive yet still staked, avoiding major organs.

After impaling his enemies in such a horrific manner, Vlad III kept them alive and watched them bleed out to their deaths. The impaling was usually carried out skillfully, ensuring the victims were alive. Vlad III heard the victims still alive, writhing and twisting in great pain.

Vlad III could be traced back to a powerful order named the “order of dragon, " a monarchical order founded by a Hungarian king in 1408. The dragon represented the order, and Vlad Dracul, the father of Vlad III, was a member. His son carried on his legacy by inheriting his father's title, Vlad Dracul, meaning devil.

Vlad III and His Ruthless Era

Vlad III had to keep fighting for his rule and was removed from the throne at least three times by conspirators against the throne. Vlad the impaler’s longest reign lasted for six years 1456 to 1462. These were the years in which Vlad III created his stronghold over the kingdom and created the persona of a ruthless and fierce ruler.

Though he still protected his citizens, his enemies and betrayers faced the worst death possible.Being impaled to death slowly and painfully. Vlad III, to keep hold of his power, murdered countless people who he thought were charged with treason. This led to him being remembered as one of his country's people's harshest and cruelest rulers even now.

Apart from using his go-to method of impaling, Vlad III also used varied torture methods to warn his enemies and traitors. His torture methods included strangling, hanging, roasting, decapitating, and even being buried alive on top of being impaled.

Different body parts of his traitors also were mutilated, striking fear into the hearts of his enemies. However, this should also be kept in mind that after witnessing the imprisoning and unfair murder of his family members Vlad III became immensely mistrustful and made very dramatic and disastrous decisions for his safety.

The Harshest Battle

The harshest battle that took place between Vlad III and Mehmed II took place in 1462. The army of the ottomans contained 2,50,000 soldiers. However, the 30,000 men of Vlad III still defeated them by using cruel and strategic torture methods like night ambushes, looting their food stocks, and even defiling them with poison. It is also believed that the men of 30,000 managed to fool the Ottomans into attacking each other at night after entering their camps in disguise to murder Sultan Mehmed.

Parting Note

Vlad III is described as a fearsome and cruel king. He enjoyed torturing his enemies with his infamous and horrific methods. The interesting factor to be noted is the conflicting ruthless image of Vlad III as the cruel murderer by the rest of the world and the image of a just ruler of the people of Romania. Vlad III was deemed a fair, capable, and apt ruler despite his fearsome punishments and torture methods.

We must also be mindful that young Vlad III encountered various atrocities that altered his view of the world and molded his way of justice. Thus it is no surprise he took such drastic methods to keep his power and even managed to protect his citizens. Thus, Vlad, the impaler, might be a ruthless ruler who was the stuff of nightmares for the world, but he still managed to be a just and loving ruler to his people.

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