I do not believe that in the original Stoker novel, Dracula once staked could be restored simply by removing the stake or any method. In subsequent works, the story is an "alternate history" in which he managed to escape, was not killed at all. But eventually, it seems like he returns by indeed just pulling out the stake or via a ritual where his often shriveled corpse is partially reanimated by an accidental drop of blood (I think I recall a clumsy workman/grave robber cutting a finger by accident, clearly saying, "ouch" and then discovering to his dismay that the corpse is gone and a moment later supply the balance of what the count needs to fully be restored.

  • Off topic, but staking IRL wasn't seen as killing the vampire--the point was to nail it into its coffin so it couldn't roam the earth. Presumably it remained undead, but was less likely to bother the living. I'm still unclear on why staking was seen as a more reliable restraint than burial. Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 20:12
  • @CristobolPolychronopolis: Very interesting, that it was meant to impede/thwart, not kill. But I am certain almost that I have seen Dracula or other vampires crumble into dust upon being staked. Moreover, his ability to transform into mist specifically would have allowed easy escape unless the stake not only held him physically but also prevented him from using his magic powers.
    – releseabe
    Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 20:43
  • Yeah, I said it was off topic (especially in this group, as evidenced by "IRL"), but thought it was interesting enough. Sorry about the kitten. Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 20:57
  • @CristobolPolychronopolis: No problem. And also off-topic: I am fascinated by the idea that things like the plague and other illnesses which produced apparent death but determining death was beyond medicine until fairly recently is how undead legends arose. Imagine from POV of both the afflicted and those who had thought he was dead when the persons climbed out of the pile of corpses (or even other still-living) and walked home that same night because, what else are u going to do? I bet such people were attacked out of fear, even indeed staked which was shown to really work.
    – releseabe
    Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 21:02
  • Well, and of course, vampire legends were tied to improper burial. Improper burial (such as not burying someone deeply enough) would lead to wild animals digging them up, often grabbing the nearest limb and trying to pull the body further up, which would lead to those returning to the grave seeing a single limb thrust up through the soil, seemingly reaching for freedom... after that, the long fingernails and teeth and the ruddy skin stretched tight over bone are exactly what you get as the skin retracts during decomposition.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 23:11

1 Answer 1


The 1966 Hammer film, Dracula: Prince of Darkness has Dracula revived by a blood ritual.

A prologue replays the final scenes from Dracula, in which Doctor Van Helsing destroys Count Dracula by sunlight; only the memory of Dracula's evil remains.


Later that night, Alan investigates a noise and follows Klove to the crypt, where Klove kills him and mixes his blood with Dracula's ashes, reviving the Count.

The Revival Scene

  • 2
    As often happens, I'm certain there must be an earlier incident, but this is the earliest one I could find.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 13:05

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