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Most Significant

Thanks for the leiter wagon photo, that is helpful!

This passage gives us our first look at the exterior of Castle Dracula and its broken battlements, courtyard, and arched passages leading from the courtyard to (presumably) the stables, carriage house, and other parts of the castle. Later, we learn that it also has at least two stories, one standing tower (24 June), and a chapel (25 June). Below it on three sides are cliffs of up to a thousand feet in height (8 May, 15 May).

This recent reconstruction of Poenari Castle is a great visualization aid. Of course, Jonathan's view of Castle Dracula would be in some intermediate state.


Most Significant

I was just flipping through Klinger's annotated Dracula, working on something else, and came across a footnote for this day's journal: "The purpose of [Dracula's coachman] disguise is obscure, for the [diligence's] coachman and all of the passengers seem perfectly able to identify the 'tall man'." (Klinger, 35n88)

Sherlock Holmes might point out that the Count's intended audience must, therefore, be Jonathan Harker. (And, perhaps, the Count himself, to save his pride before his guest.) Surely it would be unthinkable for a wealthy nobleman to come and retrieve his guest personally, in the middle of the night. Especially on a night when the Count expects to make a number of side trips, to mark the location of blue flames.

Most Significant

"The carriage went at a hard pace straight along, then we made a complete turn and went along another straight road. It seemed to me that we were simply going over and over the same ground again, and so I took note of some salient point, and found that this was so."

Perhaps Jonathan was on a mountain road with switchbacks, where the road itself deliberately goes back and forth so as to reduce the grade and erosion. As for his "salient point", what might he have seen in the dark that was so distinctive. A tree? A rock? A roadside shrine? Could he have truly seen it well enough to be confident he was seeing the same thing again and again, and not something that was similar?

Bryan Alexander

This bit is one Dracula scholars keep going over. It is cryptic.

I like your point about the coach being a performance for Harker.

Also this: "It seemed to me that we were simply going over and over the same ground again..." At several points the text gets weirdly dreamlike and surreal.

Most Significant

I think Jonathan was simply exhausted at the end of a long day, after several days' travel, it is no wonder that the journal entry describing his (admittedly strange) experience has a dreamlike quality.

Bryan Alexander

That's good writing, then.

Most Significant


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