Monday 24 December 2007

Merry christmas!

After weeks of silence I have considered how to wish visitors of this blog a merry christmas. Unfortunately, I have not had time to write a longer essay, so I will present you with the gift of a scan of the front page of one the seminal works on vampirism, VISUM REPERTUM ANATOMICO-CHIRURGICUM oder Gründlicher Bericht von den sogenannten Blutsäugern, VAMPIER, oder in der wallachischen Sprache Morie by the well-educated physician Georg Tallar published in Vienna and Leipzig in 1784.

I found this book at The Royal Library in Copenhagen in the mid Eighties, when the book was virtually unknown. At least, it was not mentioned in any bibliography that I knew of, including Dieter Sturm and Klaus Völker's Von denen Vampiren oder Menschensaugern. Later on I noticed that Aribert Schroeder knew of it, when he wrote Vampirismus: Seine Entwicklung vom Thema zum Motiv in 1973, but Schroeder's book was and is for some reason unfortunately very scarce.

Then, in 1988, Tallar turned up a few times in Paul Barber's Vampires, Burial, and Death, and later on he has been quoted by a few other authors, so his investigations are getting their proper place in the history of magia posthuma. Investigations that include interviewing and examining people who claim to be the victims of vampires (or moroi) and the examination of corpses suspected of being vampires.

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