But if they're *not*, the fact that they mostly sleep in vast, echoing, gothic crypts would be a bit of a giveaway. I can just imagine Van Helsing at the entrance to the crypt, holding up a finger. "Listen! Do you hear zat noisse? Zat is ze distinctive snorring off a fampire!"
*g* - *nods* this is, of course, both why these crypts are subterranean (or nearly so), and hidden, and why the family mausolea are satin-lined, as well as monumental, with such heavy - and snug-fitting - masonry-slab tops; and why they are low-ceilinged, and secluded behind massive, metal-bound, sound-deadening wooden doors; and, possibly also significantly, why vampires possessed of such huge, echoey ancestral architectural piles have all but vanished from nearly all but the most obscure corners of bustling, modern, current-day europe.
but we are never, ever shown, in word or in picture, along side the wooden stakes and corms of garlic, the cunningly-wrought, curved-horned echo-locators that are nowadays hidden away in the dustier corners of municipal museums, mis-identified as acoustical amplificatory hearing-aids for the partially deaf; when in fact they were an essential part of the professional - and amateur - vampire-hunter's kit; which explains why they became quite so wide-spread in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries - and, of course, why this distribution shrank to the more obscure quieter backwaters of the continent - and eventually disappeared completely from everyday life
Well, you've convinced me -- that explains it all! I'll be hard put to imagine Van Helsing without a hearing trumpet ever again.
On a tangenital, academic note, I did once read an interesting analysis of Bram Stoker's "Dracula" which pointed out that by the standards of it's day, it was a techno-thriller. If you look at the science and technology within it (the treatment of mental patients, the doctor recording his diary on wax cylinders, the frequent train travel, the guns they were using, etc.) it was really up to the minute and a little beyond, in the manner of Michael Crichton.