A letter signed by Countess Elizabeth Bathory, who was thought to have killed between 80-650 people in the 1500’s, although her guilt is still debated.
Another older work.
Elizabeth Bathory… the sketch was inspired by the Ghost song about her.
Hostel: Part II & Erzsébet Báthory
This scene from the film was particularly inspired by the infamous Elizabeth Bathory (more about her here).
While this is a Hollywood inspiration and representation, Bathory’s crimes are said to have been very similar to this.
Her torture and killing methods varied.
- The victim would be contained in a hanging cage with spikes pointed inward causing the captive to continuously bring lacerations upon their body. If the blood took too long to come out, the Countess would spear the victim until blood flow increased. Very similar to the scene above, the Countess was said to place herself beneath the cage and let the blood flow unto her.
- Devices like a cleverly articulated claw-like pincers were created; fashioned of hardened silver, the device would be fastened to a stout whip which would tear and rip the flesh to such an obscene degree.
- Biting chunks of flesh off her victims; particularly the breasts was common.
- Jamming pins and needles under the fingernails.
- Smearing the victim with honey, then leaving them for the ants and bees to attack them.
- One particular girl was said to have been made to cook and eat her own flesh.
Countess Erzsébet Báthory de Ecsed
Born: August 7, 1560 Death: August 21, 1614
Known more commonly in the Western world by the anglicised name Elizabeth Bathory, was born the daughter of Baron George Bathory and Baroness Anna Bathory whom were both Bathorys by birth.
Elizabeth’s Crime: Killing & Torturing over 600 victims who were mostly comprised of females. (Speculated to be young, virgin, females & would bathe in their blood)
- Countess Bathory
- The Bloody Lady of Csejtef
- Countess Dracula
- Lady Dracula
- & many other similar ones
Penalty: Confinement til Death by her own family where her only connection to the outside world were small slits to pass meals through.
What makes this particular story intriguing is that for most of the information that has been accumulated from back when it started to now, is that most is pure speculation.
- The Bathorys were one of the most powerful Protestant families in Hungary and had an overwhelming amount of power.
- Elizabeth was highly educated. She was fluent in Hungarian, Latin, German and Greek.
- Even men, who generally received a higher education, were illiterate.
- Most women were not allowed to read or write, let alone speak another language besides their own.
- Even the King of Poland, Stephen Báthory, was barely literate.
- Married Count Ferencz Nadasady on May 8th. She took over household affairs at Castle Sarvar, the Nadasdy family estate.
- Had five children: Paul, Andrew, Anna, Ursula, Katherine
- (1st Image) A copy of the original portrait (1585) which was lost (disappeared) in the 1990s. The only known image of the Countess.
- The trial examined the bodies found and only about 80 bodies were accounted for out of the >600 assumed.
- Confined in a four wall chamber until death. Was found dead facing down by one of the guards. Lasted only 4 years.
Myths, Speculations, and Allegations:
During the trial, many witnesses, survivors, and accomplices of Elizabeth were brought to recount what they knew about the Countess and her acts.
- Bathed in the blood of virgins who were first tortured.
- Her fear of aging was the main trigger for her actions. Hence, she used fresh blood to bring her a youthful appearance.
- Demanded all mirrors to be removed.
- Elizabeth & Ferencz Nadasady would spend time creating devices of torture.
- Darvulia (depicted on the last picture) was Elizabeth’s “witch doctor” who would instruct Elizabeth in ways of torturing. Assumed to be her lover.
- The Blood Countess by Andrei Codrescu
This book is insane. It’s basically a man who claims to be the decedent of the Countess and dwells into the mind of Bathory. It tells events of the Countess. definitely a must read!
This man’s grandmother believes they are decedents of the Countess and here he stores some information of the Countess.
- Santiago Caruso (Artists of all these photos, except the first image (the portrait))
- Films depicting the Countess
Elizabeth Bathory (Character) - Imdb
(In the film Hostel: Part 2, which is not on the list, Lorna’s death scene is a depiction of Bathory’s torture method.)
Thoughts: While Bathory’s killing spree and actions were horrifying and dark in nature, I find her quite interesting and someone who has grasped my interest for a long time. She was not only a serial killer, but a highly educated one. If only these things were included in damn history classes.
P.S. The image of the dragon is actually the Bathory family crest depicted by Santiago Caruso. In the image you could see the shield with the 3 claws. The crest has a dragon-like creature surrounding it, but Caruso actually drew the damn thing.
Daily 7: Alternate Historical Figures
Create an alternate history for a historical figure (ex: Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter). My Elizabeth Bathory was a super cute bakery chef :) Kinda like Sweeney Todd, you know? It was always her passion. And it keeps her looking young! She probably still bathes in the blood though…
In case you don’t know, Elizabeth Bathory was a countess of Hungary known as “The Blood Countess” or “Countess Dracula.” She killed over 600 people, most of them young girls. She believed bathing in the blood of virgins would keep her looking young. Women are scary.