A Summary of Bram Stoker's Dracula
Dracula is an epistolary novel, meaning that is composed from letters,
journal and diary entries, telegrams, and newspaper clippings.
Jonathan Harker, Mina Murray (later Mina Harker), and Dr. Seward write
the largest contributions to the novel although the writings of Lucy
Westenra and Abraham Van Helsing constitute some key parts of the
book. The novel has a slightly journalistic feel, as it is a harrowing
account supposedly written by the people who witnessed the book's
A young Englishman named Jonathan Harker travels through Transylvania
on a business trip. He is there to aid Count Dracula, a Transylvanian
nobleman, in buying an English estate. His journey into the remote
Eastern European landscape is fearsome, although initially he is
charmed by the Count's generosity and intelligence. Gradually, he
comes to realize that he is a prisoner in Dracula's castle, and that
the Count is a demonic being who plans to prey on the teeming masses
of London. Possessing the supernatural ability to scale vertical walls
and live without a reflection. Dracula leaves him to die at the hands
of three female vampires, but Jonathan attempts a desperate escape.
Meanwhile, in England, Jonathan's fiancée Mina visits her best friend,
Lucy Westenra. Lucy has recently been proposed to by three men Arthur
Holmwood, Dr. Seward, and Quincey Morris. She chooses Arthur to be her
happy fiancé. Mina and Lucy vacation together at Whitby, a quaint
seaside town renowned for its ghostly history. While they are there, a
Russian vessel is shipwrecked. A large dog leaps from the wreck and
runs away. All of its crew are missing apart from one dead captain.
The ship was carrying fifty boxes of earth from Dracula's castle.
Despite the wreck, the boxes are delivered as ordered. Lucy begins to
exhibit strange behaviour; she sleepwalks often, and she seems to be
growing paler and weaker. Eerie things happen one night, Mina finds
her unconscious in the cemetery, as a figure with glowing eyes bends
over her. The figure disappears as Mina comes closer, but night after
night strange events continue and Lucy grows thinner and paler with
each passing day.
Word comes from Budapest that Jonathan has been found, sick with brain
fever. He can remember nothing of his travels in Transylvania. Mina
goes to nurse him back to health and to help him make the trip back to
England. When she arrives, they marry immediately. He gives her his
diary but is afraid to read it; she seals the diary and promises that
she will never read it unless it is for his sake.
Back in England, Lucy has returned to her home in London. Arthur,
fearful for her health, asks Dr. Seward to try to figure out what is
wrong with her. Seward is baffled by her illness, and calls in the aid
of his old mentor, the brilliant Professor Abraham Van Helsing. Van
Helsing seems to know from the beginning what he might be up against.
He tries to use...