Type of work Novel
Genre Gothic, horror
Time and place written 1891– 1897; London, England
Date of first publication 1897
Point of view Shifts among the first-person perspectives of several characters
Tone Gothic, dark, melodramatic, righteous
Tense Though some of the entries record the thoughts and observations of the characters in the present tense, most incidents in the novel are recounted in the past tense.
Setting (time) End of the nineteenth century
Setting (place) England and Eastern Europe
Protagonist The members of Van Helsing’s gang—Van Helsing, Jonathan Harker, John Seward, Arthur Holmwood, Mina Murray, and Quincey Morris —might be considered the novel’s collective protagonist.
Major conflict A vampire with diabolical ambitions preys upon a group of English and American do-gooders, threatening the foundations of their society until they dedicate themselves to ridding the Earth of his evil.
Rising action Jonathan Harker learns of Dracula’s evil while visiting his castle to complete a real estate transaction; Lucy Westenra becomes increasingly ill under Dracula’s spell
Climax Lucy is transformed into a vampire; Van Helsing and his comrades mercifully destroy her
Falling action Van Helsing and company chase Dracula across Eastern Europe, where they eventually destroy him.
Themes The promise of Christian salvation; the consequences of modernity; the dangers of female sexual expression
Motifs Blood; Christian iconography; science and superstition
Symbols The “weird sisters”; the stake driven through Lucy’s heart; the Czarina Catherine
Foreshadowing The initially unidentifiable wounds on Lucy’s neck foreshadow her fall to the dark side by confirming Dracula’s presence in England.
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