10 Notorious Real Life Vampires 

Updated July 31, 2019 11k views 10 items

Some people in history are notorious for spilling blood in bizarre (yet brutal) ways. Romanian prince Vlad the Impaler may have partly inspired the legend of Dracula, but there are real-life offenders who have committed grave and nefarious deeds in order to satisfy an alleged bloodthirst.

The most notorious is Elizabeth Báthory, a Hungarian noblewoman and ruthless killer. In fact, Báthory lives in infamy as the most prolific female offender of her kind, according to the Guinness Book of World Records. So great was Báthory's bloodlust that many believe she bathed in the blood of her victims to attain infinite youth and beauty. In 1614, Báthory passed, having been imprisoned in her castle for her egregious crimes.

Read on to discover the most infamous real-life vampires who ever existed and collectively claimed many victims.

Elizabeth Báthory... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 10 Notorious Real Life Vampires
Photo: Unknown/via Mystic Files/Public Domain

The Countess of Hungary is thought to have had 600 servant girls dispatched so that she could bathe in their blood, believing that this practice would preserve her youth. She was later apprehended and tried, then punished by being walled up in her room with only a slit for slipping food and water in.

Báthory passed in her castle after only four years of imprisonment. 

More Elizabeth Báthory 

#1 of 14 The Most Ruthless Queens And Female Rulers Of All Time #26 of 61 The Scariest Serial Killers In History #11 of 15 We Asked, You Answered: Which Serial Killer Would You Most Like To See A New Biographical Movie Made

Peter Kürten is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 10 Notorious Real Life Vampires
Photo:  German Federal Archive/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 3.0

The infamous "Vampire of Dusseldorf," Kürten is said to have committed a series of slayings from 1929 to 1930, ranging from young girls to older women. He claimed to have drunk the blood of at least one of his victims.

He was apprehended in 1930 and guillotined in 1931.

More Peter Kürten 

#3 of 30 The Last Words of 30 Famous Serial Killers #20 of 44 The Heights Of The Most Notorious Killerslisted on Famous German Serial Killers

Fritz Haarmann is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 10 Notorious Real Life Vampires
Photo:  Fritz Haarmann: der Schläcter von Hanover/ARTE TV/Fair Use

"The Vampire of Hanover" is thought to have dispatched 27 boys, luring them to his apartment and biting their necks. Haarmann was actually a police informant prior to his apprehension. He was guillotined in 1925.

More Fritz Haarmann 

#1,371 of 2,437 The Most Influential People of All Time #10 of 12 12 Criminals Who Really Thought They Were Vampireslisted on Famous German Serial Killers

Joseph Vacher is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 10 Notorious Real Life Vampires
Photo:  sto plus jednicka/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain

Joseph Vacher is dubbed "The French Ripper" in comparison to Jack the Ripper of London. A drifter, with a trademark appearance of rabbit fur hat and accordion, Vacher would terminate at least 11 people, many of them young shepherds in the field. He was caught after unsuccessfully going after a woman, who fought back and called out to people nearby for help.

Vacher was apprehended and guillotined on New Year's Eve 1898.