Bram Stoker (Bram Abraham Stoker) Biography
(1847–1912), (Bram Abraham Stoker), The Duties of the Clerks of Petty Sessions in Ireland, Dublin Mail
Anglo-Irish novelist and short-story writer, born in Clontarf, near Dublin, educated at Trinity College, Dublin. His experiences as a civil servant in Dublin resulted in The Duties of the Clerks of Petty Sessions in Ireland (1879). He was also drama critic for the Dublin Mail, and contributed to other Irish newspapers. In 1878 he left for England, where he became manager of Henry Irving's Royal Lyceum Theatre in London. A Glimpse of America (1886) records a tour with Irving and his company, and he also wrote the two-volume Personal Reminiscences of Henry Irving (1906). Stoker is best known for his gothic horror novel Dracula (1897), the most famous of all tales of vampirism; Dracula, with his ‘mocking smile’, his long white blood-sucking teeth, and his eerie castle in Transylvania, has inspired numerous film and stage versions of the novel, including those by Bela Lugosi, Christopher Lee, and Klaus Kinsky; the most memorable and haunting was F. W. Murnau's Nosferatu (1922) starring the cadaverous Max Schreck. Stoker's many other horror novels and collections of short stories include The Lair of the White Worm (1911), a gruesome tale of the eponymous monster from ancient Mercia emerging from a bottomless well, and The Water's Mou' (1895), inspired by his visits to Cruden's Bay in Scotland. Dracula's Guest and Other Weird Stories (1914), with a preface by his widow, Florence, was published posthumously, and contains his finest short fiction, including ‘The Squaw’ and ‘The Judge's House’. See Christopher Frayling and Daniel Farson, The Man Who Wrote Dracula (1975).