Romanian oral tradition, German pamphlets and Russian manuscripts all reflect the cruelty of Vlad Dracula. A few stories, from In Search of Dracula, make the point.
One day a boyar urged Dracula to leave the scene of mass impalements. The smell of rotting flesh was too much for the Prince of Wallachia, the boyar insisted. Dracula asked the man, "Do you mean to say it stinks?" Assured that was exactly his point, Vlad Tepes rewarded the boyar for his concern. "Servants, bring me a stake three times as long as those that you see yonder. Make it up for me immediately in order that you impale the boyar, so that he may no longer be able to smell the stench from below. " Soon, the condemned man was above the smell of all but his own dying flesh.
"In the year 1460, on the morning of St. Bartholomew's Day, Dracula came out of the forest with his servants and had all the Wallachians of both sexes tracked down...And he had the village completely burned up with their goods and it is said that there were more than 30,000 men killed."
There lived in the Wallachian lands a Christian prince of the Greek faith who was called Dracula in the Wallachian language, which means devil in our language, for he was as cruelly clever as was his name and so was his life.
Dracula, the man and the legend, continues to fascinate. Whether a character in a novel (Bram Stoker’s "Count Dracula"), a monster in a movie (Nosferatu’s "Count Orlock"), or a tyrant in history books ("Vlad the Impaler"), his place in the world’s gallery of rogues will be secure for centuries to come.