As of 2014, there have been no objectively confirmed vampire sightings. Vampire folklore has existed for nearly 1000 years and appears in many different cultures. Modern depictions of vampires are rooted in southeastern European oral traditions, particularly those from the Transylvania region of Romania.
Vampires were traditionally regarded as demons that fed on the essence of the living, usually by drinking blood. The earliest legends depicted vampires as bloated and ruddy. The first appearance of a pale, gaunt vampire came in John Polidori's 1819 novel, "The Vampyre." Bram Stoker's 1897 novel "Dracula" is considered the quintessential vampire saga, and Count Dracula became the modern archetype of the creature.