Thursday, April 26, 2012

Dracula's Daughter

I saw this movie again last week; it starred Gloria Holden, 1936. Here is a photo where she is made up to look like Erzebet,and in fact, Holden's charcter is billed as a Hungarian Countess.
This is not as campy a film as Ingrid Pitt's Countess Dracula, though that movie does base itself on the legend of Erzebet. There is some sympathy fo Holden's character, and this is one of the films that influenced Anne Rice in her early writings of The Vampire Chronicles. As I review my notes on women's property rights, I'm reminded that a generation or two later, the female [and male]victims of the Salem Witch Trials actually lost property, or had it confiscated. Some, like the Nurse family, fought very hard an got their legacy back, so that some of their land is still with their descendants. Remember there were no Married Women's Property Acts, and women in the late Renaissance or baroque era had fewer property rights in some ways than they did in The Middle Ages. Women who did manage to hang on to their property were consdiered outcasts or different; cf Nora Lofts novel on a woman who held her own property in the time of Elizabeth I, and who as later accused of witchcraft. The parallel of lost properties coupled with accusations of sorcery fits well with Erzebet's story, too. It is food for thought.

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