Vlad IV,1431?–1476, prince of Walachia (1448, 1456–62, 1476), known as Vlad the Impaler. He was the son of Prince Vlad Dracul (Vlad the Devil) and is therefore also called Dracula or son of the Devil. Vlad IV seized the Walachian throne briefly in 1448 and definitively in 1456 with the support of John HunyadiHunyadi, John
, Hung. Hunyadi János, c.1385–1456, Hungarian national hero, leader of the resistance against the Ottomans. He was chosen (1441) voivode [governor] of Transylvania under King Uladislaus I (Ladislaus III of Poland) and won numerous victories over
..... Click the link for more information. , whom he had helped against the Ottoman Turks. Ruling with firmness and with cruelty toward his opponents, he created an orderly administration, developed commerce, and strengthened the army. In 1462, however, a campaign against him by the Ottoman Sultan Muhammad II resulted in his deposition. Vlad sought aid from the Hungarian king Matthias CorvinusMatthias Corvinus
, 1443?–1490, king of Hungary (1458–90) and Bohemia (1478–90), second son of John Hunyadi. He was elected king of Hungary on the death of Ladislaus V. Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III sought to contest the election but recognized him in 1462.
..... Click the link for more information. but was instead imprisoned in Hungary for 12 years. In late 1476, Vlad, with Transylvanian aid, regained the Walachian throne only to be defeated and killed by the Ottoman-supported prince, Laiota Basarab. The novel Dracula by Bram StokerStoker, Bram
(Abraham Stoker), 1847–1912, English novelist, b. Ireland. He is best remembered as the author of Dracula (1897), a horror story recounting the adventures of the vampire Count Dracula.
..... Click the link for more information. , although not based on Vlad's historical exploits, made the name Dracula well known in literature.