Oct 7, 2018
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This is considered the first vampire story, although not the first English vampire story. That honor goes to John Polidori’s The Vampyre, which you can also listen to hear on StoryLinkRadio Podcast. because Wake Not The Dead wasn’t translated into English until 1823. It can be considered the first modern vampire romance. It is about a man who loves his dead wife so much he has a necromancer return her to life, only to discover she has become a vampire.
Walter so loved his first wife and mourns her passing that even his new wife and family cannot ease his pain. A necromancer brings her back to life, despite his warnings “Wake Not the Dead.” She is even more beautiful than before, and it seems at first to be everything he hoped for. But this is not a romance but a horror story and a cautionary tale so over time things change.
Although in the original German version Teick never actually calls her a vampire, she drinks blood, avoids sunlight, and possesses a power to hypnotize her victims. All the classic traits we associate with vampires. Even this earliest stage, the vampire has become an erotic creature bound up with our deepest and darkest fantasies.