Bram Stoker Biography

Abraham (he called himself Bram) Stoker was born in Clontarf, Ireland, in 1847, a sickly child who was bedridden for much of his boyhood. He went to university at Trinity College, Dublin, then worked for ten years in the Irish Civil Service. He had always wanted to write, and his first novel, The Primrose Path, appeared in 1890.

Ever since his mother had told him traditional stories of ghosts and the supernatural, Bram had been interested in the widely-believed tradition of vampires. He also admired the ‘gothic’ novels of writers like William Polidori and J.S. Le Fanu. He worked hard on his own ‘modern gothic’ novel, and Dracula appeared in 1897. When the book came out some reviewers were horrified. One wrote of ‘the unnecessary number of hideous incidents which could shock and disgust the reader’, while another advised keeping the novel away from children and nervous adults!