That's what I thought too, but your own link disproves it. From the bio:
"Dracul," in Romanian language, means "Dragon", and the boyars of
Romania, who knew of Vlad Tepes' father induction into the Order of the Dragon, decided to call him "Dracul."
"Dracula," a diminutive which means "the son of Dracul," was a surname to be used ultimately by Vlad Tepes.
So, he really was called "Dracula."
second major role of this Order as a source of inspiration for Stoker's evil character is the Order's official dress - a
black cape over a red garment - to be worn only on Fridays or during the commemoration of Christ's Passion.
Ok, creepy black cape, check.
In order to secure his second and major
reign over Wallachia, Dracula had to wait until July of 1456, when he had the satisfaction of killing his mortal
enemy and his father's assassin. Vlad then began his longest reign - 6 years - during which he committed many
cruelties, and hence established his controversed [sic] reputation... Vlad became quite known for his brutal punishment techniques; he often
ordered people to be skinned, boiled, decapitated, blinded, strangled, hanged, burned, roasted, hacked, nailed,
buried alive, stabbed, etc. He also liked to cut off noses, ears, sexual organs and limbs. But his favorite method
was impalement on stakes, hence the surname "Tepes" which means "The Impaler" in the Romanian language.
Hmmm, inhuman cruelty and fondness for torture. Yep, got that too.
I thought the same thing you did, and some very quick research showed me that the novel is in fact based largely on an actual historical figure. The plot, obviously, was invented by Stoker, and the vampire legends assumed to be true for the novel (which they probably weren't), but Dracula himself is definitely not a fictional invention.
Not the real rusty
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