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History Of Vlad Dracula
Dracula was born in 1431 in the Transylvanian city of Sighisoara. At that time Dracula's father, Vlad II Dracula, was living in exile in Transylvania. Vlad Dracula was in Transylvania attempting to gather support for his planned effort to seize the Wallachia throne from the Danesti Prince, Alexandru I. The house where Dracula was born is still standing. In 1431 it was located in a prosperous neighborhood (of the fortress town Sighisoara, ed.) surrounded by the homes of Saxon and Magyar merchants and the townhouses of the nobility.
Little is known about the early years of Dracula's life. It is known he had an elder brother, Mircea, and a younger brother named Radu. His early education was left in the hands of his mother, a Transylvanian noblewoman, and her family. His real education began in 1436 after his father succeeded in claiming the Wallachia throne and killing his Danesti rival. His training was typical to that common to the sons of the nobility throughout Europe. His first tutor in his apprenticeship to knighthood was an elderly boyar whom had fought under the banner of Enguerrand de Courcy at the battle of Nicolopolis against the Turks. Dracula learned all the skills of war and peace that were deemed necessary for a Christian knight.
The political situation in Wallachia remained unstable after Vlad Dracula seized the throne in 1436. The power of the Turks was growing rapidly as one by one the small states of the Balkans surrendered to the Ottoman onslaught. At the same time the power of Hungary was reaching its zenith and would peak during the time of John Hunyadi, the White Knight of Hungary, and his son King Matthius Corvinus. Any prince of Wallachia had to balance his policies precariously between these two powerful neighbors. The prince of Wallachia was officially a vassal of the King of Hungary. In addition, Vlad Dracula was a member of the Order of the Dragon and sworn to fight the infidel. At the same...