Countess Elizabeth Bathory: Serial Killer Essay

1281 words - 5 pages

With the complexity and brutality of her crimes, Elizabeth Bathory is known as the most sadistic and prolific serial killer in the world; even more so, she stands out because she is a female that is rare: especially in the Elizabethan Era. Bathory was believed to have been responsible for the murders of 600 virgin girls. She was certain that a drop of blood would make her look youthful again, but was convinced that bathing in the blood of girls who were virgins would take years off her. Because of her personality, physical qualities, and her lack of moral/family values, Countess Elizabeth Bathory of Hungary had the life of one of the most fascinating yet obsessive leaders in all of Transylvania.
It is believed that her family had an impact and influence on the way she behaved. She was born into a wealthy and sadistic family where her uncle instructed her in Satanism and her aunt taught her sadomasochism, which is the giving and receiving of pleasure; in most cases sexual. As a child, Elizabeth had witnessed some other cruel behaviors. This behavior was by her father, who was a harsh, but righteous man. Bathory enjoyed it as she watched her father punish a gypsy by sewing him into the stomach of a horse (“Evil Dames in History”).
Bathory was not an easy child growing up; life wasn’t easy for her being a member of the wealthiest family in Europe. It is said that the young Elizabeth suffered from seizures accompanied by loss of control and fits of rage, which may have been caused by epilepsy, possibly stemming from inbreeding during the Elizabethan Era. In addition, modern psychologists have diagnosed her with having a narcissistic personality disorder based on the hours per day spent in front of a mirror, the 5-6 clothing changes each day, and the oils and ointments that she used throughout the day on her skin.

It is believed that Bathory had issues with her appearance even though she was known as the most beautiful woman in Europe. Obsessed with the idea of beauty, Bathory's life took a turn one day when she hit a servant girl across the face. Because of her long nails, Bathory dug into the girl's skin and a drop of the girls’ blood hit her face. Later, she thought she noticed that where the blood had hit her cheek made her skin look smoother and like the skin of a younger woman. Bathory also consulted a beauty expert and a group of alchemists who also agreed (Rose and Garza, "The Slavic Vampire."). An alchemist is someone who believes that everything is a magical process in terms of creation, transformation, or combination. She came to the conclusion that if she bathed in the blood of young virgins she would be young and beautiful again.
Like most serial killers, Bathory was intrigued by watching the faces of those who were in pain. However, she did not settle with her punishments and she changed the way she performed them quite frequently. Before she had found an interest in blood, she tortured young servants by pushing...

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