The Elizabeth Báthory wiki last edited by Deusoma on 02/09/14 04:44PM
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More properly written as Erzsébet Báthory, and popularly referred to as "the Blood Countess", Elizabeth Bathory was a real person who lived from 1560-1614, and is regarded by some as the most prolific female serial killer in human history, with some accounts suggesting she was responsible for more than six hundred murders, the vast majority of them young women, although she was only legally accused of a "mere" eighty murders. Using a wide variety of sadistic methods, Báthory's murders ranged from simply having victims beaten to death to biting, starving, or freezing their bodies, and even performing unnecessary surgery on them. Many years after her death, part of the legend became the idea that all of her victims were beautiful virginal girls, and that she literally bathed in their blood in an attempt to stay young and beautiful forever, but this is a fantasy made up after the fact.
Although Báthory's four accomplices were tried and convicted of the 80 murders - as punishment, two had their fingernails ripped out before being thrown alive into a fire, one was considered less responsible and was mercifully beheaded before her body was burned, and one was deemed to only have participated because the others forced her to, and was instead given life imprisonment - Báthory herself, being a member of one of the most powerful noble families of the time, was neither tried nor convicted of any crimes. She was, however, given a fairly extreme version of house arrest by her family, who bricked her into a small section of her mansion, where she spent the last four years of her life.
Given the incredibly violent nature of her crimes, Báthory's legend has lingered on in pop culture, and video games are no exception, where she is often depicted as a blood-drinking vampire or other undead abomination. She appears in Castlevania: Bloodlines (where her name is mistranslated as "Elizabeth Bartley") as the vampiric niece of Count Dracula. While not actually appearing by name, Diablo II features a named undead boss called 'the Countess' whose story is strikingly similar to that of Erzsébet Báthory, having murdered virgins to bathe in their blood, and being buried alive when her crimes were discovered. The boss known as the Butcheress in BloodRayne claims to be a descendant of Báthory, who has gained slightly-superhuman strength and agility through 'human vampirism' - regularly drinking blood despite not being a vampire.