Dracula: History and Myth. By Manning Leonard Krull

A map of Castle Poenari

— Posted by Manning on October 3rd, 2011

This metal sign is near the castle, but I somehow didn’t notice it during my visit. A lady who’d contacted me with some questions before her own trip to Poenari took this photo and shared it with me when she got back. I did my best to translate the Romanian with Google Translate and Wikipedia, but there are definitely some things that could use some clarification; please feel free to send me corrections if you’re fluent in Romanian!

Map of Castle Poenari

Here’s my translation, with notes at the bottom:

Map of Castle Poienari

(Vlad Țepeș’ Castle)

1. Drawbridge to the former castle1

2. Former gateway into the castle

3. Corridor – the castle trap2

4. Traces of a semi-cylindrical bastion, southwest corner 3

5. Semi-cylindrical bastion in the central southern side4

6. Semi-cylindrical bastion in the southeast corner

7. [Curtinele - wall?], south side5

8. [Curtin], east side

9. [Curtinele], north side

10. Wave is a collapsed portion of the northern castle wall6

11. Prismatic quadrilateral watershed (dungeon) of Castle Poienari7

12. Cistern

13. Median wall8


I’ve written up some notes that point out some parts of this map in my photos from my own visit to the castle.

1 In the fourth photo on this page I’m facing the castle from the far side of the bridge, which would be off to the left of the map.

2 First photo on this page.

3 In photos two and three on this page I’m outside the castle facing up to this part.

4 In the second photo on this page I’m in the southeast bastion facing the south-central one.

5 I haven’t been able to find any satisfactory translation for “curtinele” or “curtin,” but it seems like it’s probably just the castle walls.

6 I think “wave” is referring to sort of the edge of the castle terrain here, where there used to be a wall. It’s probably one of the pieces of the castle that was destroyed in an earthquake in the 19th century.

7 The tower/dungeon(/watershed) is featured in photos three, four, and five of this page. I’m not sure what they mean by “prismatic” here, and I’m not sure if this area was both a watershed and a dungeon, or possibly both?

8 In the third photo on this page, I’m standing near point 13 and facing the tower, point 11.



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Vlad Tepes documentary

— Posted by Manning on September 20th, 2011

I recently ran across this great documentary about the historical Dracula on YouTube. There are a few really cool shots of Castle Poenari in the snow. I was there in October, near Halloween, when it was chilly and a bit cloudy, but I’d love to see the place in wintertime like that. The documentary also tells some of my favorite weird stories about Dracula, like how he used to keep a golden chalice in the town square of each of his cities, which no one ever stole because all of his subjects were all so terrified of him. I love that stuff. Check it out…

Part one:


And don’t miss part two and part three.

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My Dracula rock

— Posted by Manning on September 20th, 2011

I try not to collect things; I try not to own things. Of all of my adventures all over Europe (about twenty countries in the last few years), I’ve only ever kept one souvenir: this small rock that I pried out of the floor of Cetatea Poenari — the castle built by Vlad Ţepeş, aka Vlad the Impaler, aka Dracula — in the Transylvania region of Romania.

My Dracula rock

It’s about an inch and a half tall. I carry it everywhere in the pocket of my backpack.

Vlad forced his imprisoned political enemies to build his castle for him, and I love to daydream about the guy who put this particular rock in place, and what he’d think if you told him some guy from the New World would steal it five hundred years later and carry it back to France (on an aero-plane no less, but let’s not overwhelm the poor chap), and later to America and a bunch of other exotic lands.

I like to pretend the rock is cursed. And just because I’m pretending doesn’t mean it’s not.

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About Dracula: History and Myth

Dracula: History and Myth, was started as a place to put my photos and notes from my trip to Castle Poenari, aka the real Dracula's castle. This site also collects information and links pertaining to the historical Dracula, Dracula in fiction, and other miscellaneous things like vampires, Romania travel, etc. Enjoy! — Manning

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Dracula: History and Myth. Copyright © 2011 Manning Leonard Krull. All rights reserved.