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“Where do vampires sleep?” is a surprisingly complex question. To most entry-level enthusiasts the answer is simple: a coffin. Digging a bit *cough* deeper, though, reveals a far more nuanced story.

Coffin-dwelling vampires first entered mainstream consciousness through the 1931 film, Dracula. In a scene set within a foggy crypt, several slender hands belonging to the fanged one's brides emerge from their caskets. In that celluloid moment, his sleeping quarters were immortalized.

Before the myth, though, came the belief.

In the 19th century, when vampire lore was at its height (not counting the early-2000s sparkly-skinned phenomenon), many believed the creatures to be the living dead. Thus, the association between vampire and coffin seemed a pragmatic one. Simply put, when you’re dead you tend to sleep (eternally or periodically) in a coffin.

But as aficionados can attest, vampires long pre-dated these beliefs. In the earliest literary incarnations (such as Lord Ruthven and Varney the Vampire), mention of a coffin was never in sight. Instead, these bloodsuckers rested their fangs wherever they pleased. Even in Bram Stoker’s original 1897 book, Count Dracula simply required “dirt from his native soil” to sleep on. It may not have been the Four Seasons, but it was certainly less morbid that a six-foot wooden death box.

Historically seeking, a definitive answer to this query would have involved talking with an author responsible for manifesting this species into existence. Today, we need look no further than the internet — home to the 21st-century vampire. Turning then to a self-proclaimed “real life vampire,” operating under the reputable URL vampirewebsite.net:

“Many of the more photo-sensitive (or photophobic) vampires DO sleep in coffins," he says. "After all, coffins are air-tight and perfect proof against sunlight. However, an equal number of vampires retire to bed, and just draw their curtains.”

For the modern day Dracula, then, it comes down to personal preference. Personally, I like to picture a sleeping arrangement akin to the recent Flight of the Conchordian farce What We Do In the Shadows: Some of the living dead sleep in Renaissance-inspired bedrooms, while others prefer the cool touch of a casket. Sleeping arrangements are not important as divvying up the household chores.

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