(c) google images. All images remain the property of their creator.
Much about them is myth, generated by fiction. They don’t sparkle, nor do they attend high school for hundreds of years and hit on whiny teenage girls. Sorry.
Matthew Beresford, author of “From Demons to Dracula: The Creation of the Modern Vampire Myth” (Reaktion, 2008), notes, “There are clear foundations for the vampire in the ancient world, and it is impossible to prove when the myth first arose. There are suggestions that the vampire was born out of sorcery in ancient Egypt, a demon summoned into this world from some other.” There are many variations of vampires from around the world. There are Asian vampires, such as the Chinese jiangshi (pronounced chong-shee), evil spirits that attack people and drain their life energy; the blood-drinking Wrathful Deities that appear in the “Tibetan Book of the Dead,” and many others (information obtained here).
How do I recognise them?
Supposedly, the only way to be certain if someone is a vampire is to cut them on the cheek and note speed of healing. Otherwise, keep an eye out for the walking dead.
Where will I find them?
Some claim they are all around us. Sources say you may encounter them on a daily basis. Their weapon is their ability to blend in.
LiveScience states that in one piece of folklore from Romania you can find a vampire using a 7-year-old boy and a white horse. The boy should be dressed in white, placed upon the horse, and the pair set loose in a graveyard at midday. Watch the horse wander around, and whichever grave is nearest the horse when it finally stops is a vampire’s grave
How do I get their attention?
How do I escape?
To kill one a stake must be inserted into the chest and left there for at least seven days to allow decomposition. Exposure to a prolonged flame can also work, but this must also happen for a period of several days, or until the body is destroyed. Decapitation also works, but the head must be kept apart from the body. There is also a theory that they cannot be killed at all and that they are simply pinned into the grave by the stake and buried. It is also said that once you kill a vampire, its spirit can jump into another body and that they will come looking for you.
They can walk freely in sunlight, have no fear of religious icons, garlic or silver.
Vampires only need to be invited into your home if they observe the societal rules. Otherwise, they can break in just like anyone else.
They can eat and drink, but it provides no nutrition.
Vampires can control themselves in the presence of blood, like you can control yourself if in a room with a glass of water or a tub of ice cream (well, in theory).
Reputed to be very strong, with accelerated healing. Long lived, but not necessarily immortal.
They have a reflection and can appear in photographs.