Importance Of The Setting For Dracula

1378 words - 6 pages

Importance of the Setting for Dracula

   With castles, hidden streets, waterways, recurring rainy weather, interesting European architecture, and mystique, London is the perfect location for Bram Stoker's Dracula. London: The capital of Great Britain, and the center of attention in the nineteenth century, due to the many incidents that were going on at the time. The novel includes many daunting scenes, such as when Dracula heaves a sack withholding a deceased child before three female vampires. Stoker may have been influenced by London's numerous enticements; it is no surprise why he choose it to be the setting of his novel, London seems to be "exotic" and unknown. Stoker is obviously inspired by London's castles, hidden streets, and church yards. Because of all of these points, London is the perfect gothic setting for Stoker's Dracula.

 

London is recognized for its grand castles. Stoker may have been motivated to use these in his novel describing Dracula's estate in London, "Carfax" and also his castle in Transylvania. This is illustrated when Mr. Harker arrives at Dracula's home "up a great winding stair, and along another great passage great passage, on whose stone floor our steps rang heavily. At the end of this he threw open a heavy door, and I rejoiced to see within a well-lit room in which a table was spread for supper and whose mighty hearth a great fire of logs, freshly replenished, flamed and flared." (Stoker,13).

 

High small windows, arched ceilings and solid stone walls are also typical for the gothic architecture, these characteristics makes the building cold, dark and forbidding; for example, the text says about the castle in Transylvania that "The Count halted, putting down my bags, closed the door, and crossing the room, opened another door, which led into a small octagonal room lit by a single lamp, and seemingly without a window of any sort" (13) and ."..a vast ruined castle, from those tall black windows came no ray of light and whose broken battlements showed a jagged line against the moonlight sky" (11). Everything what makes it difficult to see, for example dimming lights and dark thick walls are characteristics of this type of architecture. Overall you could say, that the count's castle looks like the cathedrals in the thirteenth century, it is a copy of a medieval building.

 

London also seems perfect as a location for this novel not only because of its buildings, but also because of its weather and its scenery: Because London (or Great Britain in general) is an island, it is surrounded by water. This makes it "isolated" from the main land. It makes it problematic to reach, that's why Dracula has to go by ship when he leaves Transylvania and goes to London. People often connect harbors with something frightening and you can see harbors as well in horror movies. To come back to creepiness what is caused by the difficulty to see certain things, it is also...

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