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The Boston Globe


Radu Florescu, 88; historian added flesh to Dracula myth

By the time Radu Florescu and his Boston College colleague Raymond McNally were finished demystifying the vampire myths, Dracula didn’t know what bit him.

Beginning with their best-selling 1972 book “In Search of Dracula,” Dr. Florescu and McNally, who died in 2002, showed that the historical Count Dracula was Vlad Tepes, a 15th-century prince in the Wallachia region of Romania who alternately was revered and feared. Bram Stoker’s 1897 gothic novel melded accurate details about the prince with Transylvanian folklore to create a Dracula who, for all his neck biting, was more palatable than Vlad, whom Dr. Florescu called “fascinating, enigmatic, cruel.”

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