Vampire Forensics: Uncovering the Origins of an Enduring Legend

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National Geographic Books, 2010 - History - 303 pages
18 Reviews
Mark Jenkins’s engrossing history draws on the latest science, anthropological and archaeological research to explore the origins of vampire stories, providing gripping historic and folkloric context for the concept of immortal beings who defy death by feeding on the lifeblood of others. From the earliest whispers of eternal evil in ancient Mesopotamia, Greece, and Rome, vampire tales flourished through the centuries and around the globe, fueled by superstition, sexual mystery, fear of disease and death, and the nagging anxiety that demons lurk everywhere.

In Vampire Forensics, Mark Jenkins probes vampire legend to tease out the historical truths enshrined in the tales of terror: sherds of Persian pottery depicting blood-sucking demons; the amazing recent discovery by National Geographic archaeologist Matteo Borrini of a 16th-century Venetian grave of a plague victim and suspected vampire; and the Transylvanian castle of "Vlad the Impaler," whose bloodthirsty cruelty remains unsurpassed.

Jenkins navigates centuries of lore and legend, adding new chapters to the chronicle and weaving an irresistibly seductive blend of superstition, psychology, and science sure to engross everyone from Anne Rice’s countless readers to serious students of archaeology and mythology.

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Review: Vampire Forensics: Uncovering the Origins of an Enduring Legend

User Review  - Rebekah Dressel - Goodreads

First I would like to say that though this book wasn't quite what I expected (and not quite what I bought it for) it was nonetheless very interesting and quite informative. It can be confusing due to ... Read full review

Review: Vampire Forensics: Uncovering the Origins of an Enduring Legend

User Review  - Jules Goud - Goodreads

I tried. I swear I tried. My biggest problem with this book? Where were the forensics? I mean, Jenkins mentioned them in passing but he never elaborated on them. This book was a history of the legend ... Read full review

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About the author (2010)

Mark Jenkins is chief historian of the National Geographic Society's archives and co-author of High Adventure, an illustrated history of the Society.

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