The Daily Mail reports a newly uncovered headstone in Naples’ Piazza Santa Maria La Nova could be the final resting place of Vlad the Impaler, better known to most as Dracula.
While the discovery of Dracula’s grave may read like science fiction to many, medieval history scholar Raffaello Glinni, the source of the Daily Mail story makes some interesting points.
Glinni focus on the fact that Dracula’s supposed grave is located in the same graveyard where Vlad’s daughter and son-in-law could have been laid to rest.
In 1476 Dracula disappeared in battle. While some sources have claimed that he died, the researchers claim he was in fact imprisoned by the Turks, who hauled him away in chains.
His daughter Maria was meanwhile brought to the Neapolitan court, whose ruling family was allied with her own family, where she was adopted and eventually married to a Neapolitan nobleman.
Documents show that Maria in fact paid a ransom to the Turks for her father, who was then brought to Naples, the historians say.
Student Erika Stella, investigating the cloister of Santa Maria Nova in Naples for her thesis, discovered the incongruous grave and returned with historians who undertook months of research.