Most Vampire myths come to us from the
Dark Ages, when science was in its infancy and people looked to religion or
superstition to explain the world around them. While many Vampire myths have
their basis in Christian orthodoxy, others represent imaginative interpretations
of actual Vampire behavior.
Vampires sleep in
Source: this myth probably arose from
gravediggers and others who observed vampires emerging from coffins and
Truth: if a vampire did spend the night
in a coffin, it probably had nothing to do with sleeping preference. In the old
days, many victims of Vampire bites were interred while still in a Vampiric
coma. The truth is, vampires will sleep wherever they feel safe.
Garlic repels vampires
Source: most likely based on
Fact: Vampires have sensitive noses and
can momentarily be driven off by pungent odors. However, this method of
deterrence is unreliable and certainly won't work on an experienced vampire.
Crosses repel vampires
Fact: crosses have no effect on Vampires.
Vampires are killed by driving a stake
through their heart
Fact: because their blood is circulated
by skeletal muscles, vampires can easily survive injuries to the heart.
Vampires burst into flames upon exposure
Source: most likely based on observations
of a vampire's extreme reaction to sunlight
Fact: sunlight renders Vampires, with
their hyper dilated irises, blind. It also causes neural pathways to fire
randomly in the Vampire brain, creating an extreme epileptic reaction. As
dramatic as this reaction may appear, it will not be enough to start a fire.
Holy water burns the skin and flesh of
Fact: holy water, or any water for that
matter, has little effect on Vampires.
Vampires prey on virginal
Source: a reflection of Victorian-era
fears over the sexual awakening of young women.
Fact: while Vampires have a stated
preference for the taste of young blood, they are not particular as to which
gender provides it.
Vampires can fly
Source: observation of leaping Vampires;
association of Vampires with bats.
Fact: while they do possess extraordinary
leaping ability (Vampires have been observed leaping over fences 20 feet high),
Vampires cannot fly.
Vampires turn into bats
Source: association of Vampires with
Fact: no,Vampires cannot turn into bats.
Vampires are not visible in
Source: Christian religion. It was
thought that a Vampire, or any creature lacking a soul, would not produce a
reflection in a mirror.
Fact: Vampires are visible in mirrors,
although interestingly enough, they are often quite discomfited by their own