Encyclopedia of Vampire Mythology

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VANPIR

(Van-PEER)
The word vanpir ("werewolf ") was said to have been created by an unnamed German officer. In 1 726 there were thousands of reports filed that the plague that was running unchecked in the southeast Slavic regions was started by REVENANTs. In life these revenants had been werewolves, but after they died, they had come back as what the locals called VRYKOLAKA. The German officer changed the word vrykolaka for one he allegedly made up—vanpir. No reason has ever been given for his decision to have done this. German newspapers began to pick up on the story and it spread. Eventually it came to France where the odd and obviously foreign word was changed once again, this time to a more familiar and as terror-inspiring word—VAMPYRE. Again the story began to spread and managed to make its way over the channel into England. This time the word's spelling was changed to suit its British audience and became vampire.
Source: Singh, The Sun, 276; Suckling, Vampires, 54; White, Notes and Queries, vol. 41, 522
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