About the blood countess there is a multiplicity of facts, stories and legends to find in the net. I strove to carry here the facts and also the legends together. I hope you will find the history of the Báthory, which really lived, just as interesting as the stories of Bram Stoker about count Dracula, who is pure fiction. But, the stories about Dracula are more based on the history of the blood countess Báthory, than on the history of the count Vlad Drakul, who was by the way a relative to the Báthory. At least an ancestor of the Báthory has supported him in the war for its country.
The Báthory by the way stands as mass murderer No. 1 in the Guinness book of Records. A cruel celebrity. 610 of her murders are proved as she described them in her diary, one has the assumption of at least 650 murders, which she murdered in her cruel kind.
But everything in sequence:
Erzsébeth was born on 7 August 1560 as a daughter of Baron and of Baroness George and Anna Báthory. The Báthory's were one of the most outstanding and richest families in Hungary at that time. Even the Hungarian king was debtor with them. A close relative was cardinal, Stephan Báthory, her uncle, was prince of Transylvania and was later appointed as the king of Poland.
She was born in the castle of Escet (Hungary). She was already as a child very beautiful and in addition more educated as others. She spoke Hungarian, Latin and German fluently, could read and write these languages, in a time, when even the aristocracy consisted to a large extent of illiterates.
Those times, when she grow up, were shaped by the war with the Turks.
Because in the aristocracy and thus also within the Báthorys one married among themselves, genetic defects were on the agenda. Erzsébeth is to have been epileptic. One of her uncles was a Satanist and her aunt Klara was a well-known sexual adventurer and a lesbian, which admit also for the fact that she tormented her servants. Her brother Stefan Báthory was a notorious drunkard and fornicator.
The main cause, the trigger for her later cruelties, are events, happened between when she was in the age between six and eleven. It is not clear whether not even both happened successively.
Sometimes at the age between 6 and 9 a member of a gypsy band, which played at the castle Escet, was accused and convicted, to have sold Hungarian children to the Turks. He was condemned to death.
Erzsébeth managed it somehow to escape from the servants and watch the execution. She regarded also, when the belly of a horse was slit and the to death condemned was plugged into the belly that only his head was out and the horse was sewn again.
When Elizabeth was 9 years old, there was a farmer rebellion. To the farmer rebel succeeded to enter it into the castle Ecsed, in which Elizabeth was accommodated. Some child women escaped with Elizabeth and her two older sisters Anischka and Sandra by a secret tunnel that leaded to the outside. When they were slowly caught up, the child women hid Elisabeth on a tree, however it was too late to hide the other children of Báthory. The child women were killed immediately with axes and morning stars, Elisabeth's sisters became both raped and were hung up on the tree on which Elizabeth hid herself. Elizabeth saw everything and was not able to move herself, what probably saved her life. On the next morning she could ride with the help of a run away horse to the next locality. There already the insurrectionary farmers were caught. The farmers were tortured all under her eyes and executed by quartering. It is told that Elizabeth was urinating when she saw those suffering farmers.
At the age of 11 years Elizabeth was gotten engaged with Férencz Nadasdy. The Nadasdy`s was a less wealthy and less important family in Hungary. Over the age of Férencz there are different data, probably however he was born in 1555. His school education took place in Vienna, according to the reports of his widowed mother from 1565 to 1567. His school achievements were probably rather moderate. Férencz was rather an athletic type, who became later very well known as "the black knight of Hungary" in the fights against the Turks. From today's view an engagement with 11 appears rather early. From the view at that time it was however normal.
The next year, which can be regarded as secured, is the year 1574. In this year Elizabeth gave birth to a daughter. She was made pregnant obviously by an farm hand. She was brought up to the birth on a distant castle of the Báthory's, according to other sources, she had been until the birth under the custody of her future mother-in-law. In any case there is nothing more known about her daughter, except the fact, that she was given to a farm hands family.
Elizabeth and Ferencz married a connection of two Protestant families, on 8 May 1575 in the castle Verrano. She was in the age of 15, her man 20. Even the emperor Maximilian II. was invited, but could not participate however. He sent however a delegation with a precious gift. Erzsebéth kept her name and Férencz called himself now Báthory Nádasdy, not uncommonly, because now the own name was extended by the more important name of the Bathory's.
After the wedding they lived in the castle Sarvar. Here they were well known as hard against their servants.
Férencz often was on business trips (war against the Turks). Thus Erzsebéth had the line of the household. It is delivered that she already began in recent years to whip and torment her servants. It is also sayed that she was a good wife, since Férencz was frequent on war, she had a multiplicity of lovers and she probably eloped with an unknown young man, after a short time however reufully returned. Férencz remitted her and after long childlessness she gave birth to her first child in 1585, a daughter called Anna. During the next 9 years gave birth to 2 more daughters, Ursula and Katarina and in 1598 her first and only son Pavol was born.
According to letters to her relatives she was a good mother, what was nothing unusual for noble ones in that times.
Férencz was, like always, often on war courses and Elizabeth often visited her aunt Klara, which was obviously bisexual. Férencz became famous and notorious in this time because of its bravery and in addition, because of his cruelties towards the Turks. Thus it is reported that he instructed that with the conquest of the village Urmisz the priest of the village to be beheaded and to rape and burn the present women and children. It was never proven whether he knew from the acts of his wife, but many sources assume, that he reported her of his own torture methods and lets her also participate in whippings. Férencz had a whip, to which end silver hooks were attached. These tore such terrible wounds with whippings in that he left the whip at home and Elizabeth found it and she liked to use it.
Elizabeth was young, beautiful and rich and had so always a multiplicity of female servants around. These were the goals of her cruelties. For the smallest offenses one was logged and one was whipped.
If servants were gotten with the theft, then Erzsébeth loved it to press them glowing coins into the hands.
At this time it had called already accomplices Dorothea Szentes, Dorka, Illona Jó, the wet-nurse of her children, one as forceful known female farm hand and a male servant Johannes Ujvary, called Ficzko. Dorka is described as a witch and of Ficzko one says, he was a dwarfed cripple. Locations of her cruelties have been Vienna, castle Lockenhaus, Beckov (pronounce: Bezkov)und Cachtice. Vienna and Lockenhaus were located quasi in the middle of the city and due to the neighborhood too risky, castle Beckov is located direct above the village, therefore she spent her time in the castle Cachtice, also mentioned as "Csejthe", far from the village and lonely located. Here the cries of the tormented did not disturb anybody.
On 4 January 1604 Férencz died due to a wound that he got 4 months ago from the knife of a whore, which he did not want to pay. Generally this is accepted as the time, from which her cruelty fully broke through and the unreined murders began.
As trigger for her bloodthirstiness it is said that a maid hurt her when combing. Elizabeth struck it in such a way in rage that a blood drop came on her hand. Later days she had the feeling, her skin would have become younger. This is to have been the reason for the baths in the blood of the murdered ones. In my opinion this however for improbable, since blood coagulates much too fast and chemicals to avoid this were unknown even with the "witches at that time". Reason was probably her pure lust at tormenting and thus pure Sadism.
It is proven that she loved it to bite and tear her victims with the teeth the meat from the body. Likewise she loved it to perforate her naked victims with needles or in the winter on the courtyard of the castle to pour them over with water and let the victims to become ice columns.
All of her victims were female and young. As long as it concerned itself daughters out of the rural poor, the crimes were never noticeable. Erszébeth belonged to the aristocracy and the life of a farmer's daughter was worth nothing. With the time the removal of the corpses had become too lavish or it have been too many. Elizabeth and her companions became careless, they threw the corpses simply over the castle walls and left them to the wolves and other animals. That did not always work and many corpses were found. Since all corpses were bloodless, fast the fairytale of Vampires arose.
Later, apparent there were no longer enough young girls in the proximity, Elizabeth created a "school for the education of noble girls". This was well visited by the young girls of the low aristocracy. In addition, at them she realized her sadistically inclinations. The minister of the place refused soon making the funerals when the number of the dead ones rose. Thus they were put down likewise, like the farmer daughters, on the fields. The farmers found many of them and this led to the fact that the rumors also came to ears of the emperor and he arranged an investigation.
In the night to 30 December penetrated a crowd of armed ones under the guidance of her ralative Palatine Gyorgy Thurzo Betlemfalvy (today one would say Prime Minister of Hungary), the castle Cachtice and arrested the "blood countess". What they found was a picture of horror.
In the courtyard they found dying girls, by needles perforated, with water poured over and to ice columns frozen. In the basement vaults they found further victims, partly near to death, terribly mutilated or left for death waiting.
Elizabeth was arrested by Thurzo in her castle and prepared at his instruction in the "death tower" a dungeon for Erzsébeth, course-bricked the windows and released only a small opening for meals.
The saying of Thurzo is delivered:
"You, Elizabeth, are like a wild animal. You are in the last months of your life. You do not earn to breathe the air of the liberty to see still the light of the gentleman. You will disappear from this world and appear never again on it. The shade will wrap you and will you find time to consider your bestial life. I condemn you, lady of Cachtice, to lifelong shank in your own castle."
Here she spent the remainder of her life up to her death at 14th of August 1614. One of the guards wanted to have a look at her by the slot, despite her age of 54 as beautifully beeing "Tigress of Cachtice" and saw her, lying with the face on the soil, dead. Her last will was already written on 31 July 1614 by 2 priests and signed by her. Herein her possession was divided among her children.
Ihren Komplizen Ficzko, Dorka, Katarina Beneczky, and Illona Jó, insgesammt 16 ihrer Folterknechte, Magier und Mitgleider ihres Hofstaates,wurde vom 2. bis zum 7. Januar 1615 der Prozess gemacht. Alle wurden zum Tode verurteilt und verbrannt, zwei bei lebendigem Leibe, die anderen wurden vorher geköpft.
Her accomplices Ficzko, Dorka, Katarina Beneczky and Illona Jó, in total 16 of her torturers, magicians and members of her entourage, from 2. to 7. January 1615 the process was made. All were condemned to be burned to death, two with alive bodies, the others beheaded before. Elizabeth was never condemned and has also never found herself guiltily. For her everything was only a conspiracy of the church and the deaths of the girls have only been justified reprimands.
Also a second process, with more than 200 witnesses, did not lead to the condemnation of Erszébeth.
The inhabitants of the village Cachtice refused leaving her buried on their cemetery. Thus she was buried also on the castle Cachtice. Elizabeth lies today in the burial place of the Báthorys on the Lamosz cemetery in Budapest.
All "documents" about the "Hungarian Whore", as she was also called, were regarded for more than one hundred years under catch. Even her name was spoken only behind reproached hand.
Since the material about the "blood countess" is so extensive, I terminate history for the time being here. I will extend it later by some facts.