Carpe Jugulum

Carpe Jugulum is a comic fantasy novel by Terry Pratchett, the twenty third in the Discworld series. It was first published in 1998.

In Carpe Jugulum, Terry Pratchett pastiches the traditions of vampire literature, playing with the mythic archetypes and featuring a tongue-in-cheek reversal of 'vampyre' subculture with young vampires who wear bright clothes, drink wine, and stay up until noon. The title is a play on the Latin phrase carpe diem ('seize [literally, "pluck"] the day') and the author considers it to mean 'Go for the throat'.

Plot summary

Count Magpyr and family are invited to the naming of Magrat and King Verence's daughter, to be conducted by the Omnian priest, Mightily Oats. For some reason, the Magpyrs are not keen to go home to Überwald, and, once again, the witches, Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg and Agnes Nitt (aka Perdita) have to save the mountain realm of Lancre.

The Magpyr family have made themselves much more formidable enemies by building up tolerance to the normal methods used to defeat vampires, such as garlic, bright light, and religious symbols. They exert a hypnotic charm over normal people which prevents them from realising that the vampires are taking over Lancre. Only the youngest witch, Agnes, and the Omnian priest, Mightily Oats, seem able to resist this charm, due to their dual personalities. The Magpyr son, Vlad, is attracted to Agnes because she is able to resist him.

There is an Igor who is the servant of the Magpyrs. He is a traditionalist who spends his spare time breeding and distributing spiders for the dark corners of the castle. The Magpyrs are very rude to him, and make fun of his attempts to keep their residence looking like a 'proper' vampire's castle. Eventually he rebels, using his considerable stock of Holy Water and other religious symbols to repel the Magpyres.

The vampires identify Granny Weatherwax as one of their more significant foes, and decide to deal with the problem by converting her to one of them. Unfortunately, they instead find themselves 'Weatherwaxed' and are defeated by their craving for hot, sweet tea and biscuits.

As is common in Discworld novels, Pratchett references and parodies popular culture frequently, especially Hammer horror and the gothic subculture in this novel.


  • Захапи за врата (Bulgarian)
  • Pluk de strot (Dutch) (Seize the throat)
  • Carpe Jugulum (Czech, Estonian, French, Polish, Spanish)
  • Carpe Jugulum. Хватай за горло! (Russian)
  • Ruhig Blut! (German)


External links

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