The Symbolism of Vampires

Vampires are folklore creatures that survive by feeding on vital human essence – most commonly blood. They are fascinating creatures that existed in European folklore of the 17th and 18th centuries.

symbolism of vampires

Since then, vampires have become so popularized and familiar that they are widely present in our culture. We see them in movies, books, and even works of art.

But why are vampires so fascinating? Why do vampires enthrall humans so much? Perhaps it’s because they represent death and suffering. Or maybe because they represent the darker sides of our characters that we’re so desperate to hide.

And because they try to hide when the sun comes out, they are somewhat mysterious and secret, too. They are such polarizing figures that people either love or hate them. Some people even dream about them!

In this article, we’ll discuss the symbolism of vampires – what they represent in our lives and what they can mean in dreams.

[lwptoc numeration=”none” borderColor=”#000000″]

The Symbolism of Vampires

Here is what vampires could represent in our lives.

1. Death

There’s an element of worry when we think about vampires. They are these vile creatures that try to suck the life out of humans by sucking the blood out of them. That’s why they’re often connected to death.

In Bram Stoker’s novel, Dracula, the main character (Dracula) was an undead creature that fed on the blood of others to survive. Dracula would try to spread this undead curse to other people by sucking the life out of them.

That’s why vampires have often deemed symbols of death. They’re somewhat scary, and there have been many interpretations of Dracula through movies and TV series.

2. Dread

Stoker’s Dracula was actually based on a real character. It was Vlad the Impaler – perhaps you’ve already heard of him. He’s known as one of the most dreaded characters in human history – most probably, because of his dread-inducing treatment of his vassals.

He was a ruler of Wallachia (present-day Romania) in the 15th century. He was particularly cruel towards his enemies – he used methods of torture, unlike all other rulers. Some of them included boiling enemies to death and impaling them so that they would suffer.

Obviously, Stoker’s novel was a bit exaggerated while trying to copy the real-world ruler. But the image still persists – Vlad the Impaler, also sometimes known as Dracula. He was known for impaling his foes, although Dracula’s way of doing things was slightly different.

3. Our Darker Self

Anyone can become a monster if they want to – which is why a lot of us connect with vampires on a deeper level. Jung calls this “the Shadow” – our alternative character, which is fuelled by our real desires (which we try to hide so desperately, at times).

Vampires are free of guilt; they do what they have to do in order to survive, and they feel no remorse or shame for what they do. They represent our darkest wants and desires, which are sometimes deeply hidden underneath our “facade.”

And because vampires are so desperate to remain hidden and anonymous, we often connect it to our darker selves. We also like to keep this part of ourselves hidden from the world.

4. Secrecy and Mysteriousness

Vampires are an enigma – in many movies and TV interpretations, vampires are depicted as dark and mysterious creatures, waiting for their prey to become vulnerable so that they strike – in secrecy, of course.

Nobody is really able to track the vampires down until they strike and kill the protagonists one by one. Everything is done discreetly and secretly, though.

Even if they are horrible creatures, we are still somewhat fascinated by vampires. Because they are so enigmatic and secret, we still want to know what they are, and how they work. This mystery around vampires is fascinating to many.

5. Fear

There’s something so scary and even horror-inducing about vampires. Nobody wants to see them or face them.

In almost every movie interpretation of vampires, they are seen as these horror-inducing creatures. They play an important role in horror movies. In fact, some of the oldest movies in the movie industry were about vampires.

A good example is Nosferatu, one of the earliest movies from 1924. Or the Russian movie Dracula, which dates all the way back to 1920. And even if those movies were silent, they were still pretty good at depicting vampires as these scary characters.

6. Rebellion

Perhaps you’ve already seen a teenager with a vampire tattoo… Well, vampires are actually a symbol of rebellion.

Because they are so secret, vampires often face the world. It feels like it is them against the world in almost all cases. In some ways, that’s a sign of rebelliousness. It has made it easy for teenagers to identify with vampires more, even if they are somewhat scary creatures.

7. Darkness

Count Dracula lived in a dark, mysterious, and remote castle somewhere in Transilvania – or at least, that’s how the story goes. Vampires thrive in darkness under the moon, and they are vulnerable to light. In this sense, they’re similar to bats.

As such, they try all they can not be exposed to the sunlight. They do their best work when it’s dark and when everyone’s sleeping. Just like a nightmare, they creep up to their victim and then they strike – swiftly and effortlessly.

Vampires symbolize darkness – whether it is physical darkness or emotional darkness. They are also the dark side of our characters. As such, they represent the negative and “dark” emotions of our minds and our character.

8. Negativity

Vlad the Impaler, which is the original Dracula, was one of the most negative personalities in history. He treated his vassals badly and tortured his enemies with cruel methods. Everyone feared him, which is why he became a dreaded character, but also someone with who nobody wanted to be allied.

He is often seen as a negative character – just like vampires are. They have become synonyms for unhappiness, struggle, and negativity, as well as disappointment. And because they spread their curse, they are also synonymous with spreading negativity between people.

The Meaning of Vampires in Dreams

So you might have recently dreamt about vampires, but you’re not sure what that means. Don’t worry; it’s not all doom and gloom. In some dreams and scenarios, dreaming of vampires can actually be good for you.

  • Dreaming of a vampire in dreams is normally connected to something negative in your life. If you just see a vampire, it might mean that something negative is going on in your life. The indication here is that you should do everything you possibly can to eliminate this negativity from your life.
  • Vampires in dreams also represent some form of addiction going on in your life that you can’t shake. It can be your addiction to drugs, alcohol, or some other substances or stuff that can cause addiction.
  • Alternatively, dreaming of vampires means that there’s someone parasitic in your life that’s draining your energy or your resources. It can also represent a part of your personality as a parasitic part of yourself. You might be feeding off of others’ energy too much, which is why it might make sense to rethink this.
  • Being bitten by a vampire in dreams normally means that someone is draining your life energy or that someone is using you unjustly, and you’re not able to stop it. This type of dream is quite common, although it does sometimes stem from seeing graphical content in your real life, such as vampire horror movies.
  • If you dream of killing a vampire or vampires in your dreams, that’s actually a positive dream. This can signify that you’re overcoming your dependence on others or your dependence on external circumstances and that you’re taking control of your life. It might also mean that you’re effectively confronting others or things that are causing dependence or addiction.
  • If you’re being followed or lured by a vampire in your dreams, it represents sexual tension between you and your crush/lover. In this case, the tendency to follow this person is too strong for you to resist, and it’s showing in your dreams. You might be turning to dependent on this person, though. Maybe it’s time to rethink the situation.
  • If you have dreamt about dating a vampire, this might be a bad omen for you in your personal life. It means that someone special to you (your partner, for example) might cause harm to you in the near future. This will most likely be emotional harm, not physical. In any case, be on your guard about this and keep it in mind.

Final Thoughts

When we think about vampires, we usually connect them to negative symbolism. They are these scary and dreadful characters that can cause us to convert to vampires ourselves. In some cases, they even represent death. The symbolism of vampires usually covers symbols of negativity, and they even have some historical context, too (think Vlad the Impaler).

Dreaming about vampires can be a scary proposition, although it’s not every dream that’s negative. In some cases, it might even bring good things to your life!