Is Castlevania Based On A True Story? 

Lisa Tepes was murdered by the Church of Wallachia for trying to improve the life of peasants in Netflix’s Castlevania. But, is there any truth to this tale?

In my article on Castlevania Season One, I mentioned the perceived clerical error (either intentional or otherwise) relating to our world’s timeline.  

But, is there any truth to Dracula’s insinuation in Netflix’s Castlevania that humanity has been ‘set back’ multiple times? Have achievements, knowledge, books, and collective memory truly been lost or purposefully destroyed by the church, or other authoritarian entities? 

Today I’d like to discuss an odd mixture of dates on pirate’s graves, English plague stones, and our world’s current timeline and calendar to pose credence to the (growing) belief that we may be living through the lies of revisionist history. 

How Can History Be Distorted?  

Vlad Dracula Tepes shows Lisa his gold-encrusted  telescope, solar system diagram, and extensive library during her first visit
Vlad Dracula Tepes shows Lisa his gold-encrusted telescope, solar system diagram, and extensive library during her first visit

At this point in time, history is simply a set of agreed-upon facts between journalists, scholars, writers, politicians, and government officials.  

History is distorted not only by an individual and institution but by political and religious parties, and nationalist and ethnic groups which use history as a tool to further their interests.  

Just as the Church of Wallachia in Castlevania was implied to have routinely purged history and dissenters in order to maintain control, (powerful) institutions may still continue these practices of tyranny and theft each and every day. 

Can History Be Altered?  

When looking through history books even from 20 years ago, you would notice that history has been rewritten, and continually altered.  

Place names are routinely updated, nicknames are given to towns by locals to shorten their official names which stick over time, bridges are hastily redone and renamed for vanity projects…things are everchanging. 

But, what about the knowledge that has been routinely ‘lost’ on purpose throughout our world’s collective memory? 

What Is It Called When History Is Altered?  

When history is rewritten and altered, it is known as ‘historical revisionism’ in histography.  

Basically, historical revisionism details whether or not professors, scholars, and historians wish to challenge the established orthodox timeline taught in schools and history books.  

If they agree to do so, the contrary evidence or reinterpreted historical events are updated and according to Wikipedia, “reflect new discoveries of fact, evidence, and interpretation, which then results in revised history.” These updates can also include changes in society and an accompanying evolution (or devolution) of morality in its people. 

What Is An Example Of Revisionist History?  

An Example of Revisionist History Being Embraced: 

In a cave in Cheddar Gorge, Somerset, England, the skeletal remains of a Mesolithic man were found.  

Bust of Cheddar Man, England
Bust of Cheddar Man, England

Through DNA analysis, Cheddar Man was found to have dark hair, blue eyes, dark brown skin, and hair that “was curlier than average. In short, Cheddar Man looked like what we would call today a ‘Black man’ and what would be called a ‘Moor’ just 200 years ago. 

An Example of Revisionist History Being Ignored: The rest of the swarthy Europeans.  

(And don’t even get me started on the ‘Clovis Stone’ archeology debacle here in America…) 

Benjamin Franklin’s Observations Concerning the Increase of Mankind 

A Negro Festival drawn from Nature in the Island of St Vincent by Agostino Brunias, circa 1800s
A Negro Festival drawn from Nature in the Island of St Vincent by Agostino Brunias, circa 1800s

Angrily penned in 1751, this is what Benjamin Franklin had to say about the complexion and makeup of the European population during his age 271 years ago: 

“Which leads me to add one Remark: That the Number of purely white People in the World is proportionably very small. All Africa is black or tawny. Asia chiefly tawny. America (exclusive of the new Comers) wholly so. And in Europe, the Spaniards, Italians, French, Russians and Swedes, are generally of what we call a swarthy Complexion; as are the Germans also, the Saxons only excepted, who with the English, make the principal Body of White People on the Face of the Earth. I could wish their Numbers were increased…” 

Observations Concerning the Increase of Mankind, Peopling of Countries, etc., Benjamin Franklin 1751

What Did The Original Britons Look Like?  

Golda Rosheuvel plays Queen Charlotte in Bridgerton, set in the Regency Era of England (1811-1820)
Golda Rosheuvel plays Queen Charlotte in Bridgerton, set in the Regency Era of England (1811-1820)

Although it’s great that academia as a whole has decided to acknowledge the evidence relating to the original Britons having darker skin, as always, it is not the whole story.  

Not to go too deeply into this, I just wanted to provide a (brief) historical description of Britons, the Welsh, and Celts in antiquity to add credence to a point.  

The following quotes will come from Ancient and Modern Britons: A Retrospect Vol I (1884) by David MacRitchie.  

Note: It is also said that the Welsh and Cornish make up the general stock of ancient inhabitants in Albion, or England today. 

“…and extreme exponents of the theory do not hesitate to speak of the Iberian ancestors of the people of England, recognizing the racial characteristics in the ‘small swarthy Welshman,’ the ‘small dark Highlander,’ and the ‘Black Celts to the west of the Shannon,’ as well as in the typical inhabitants of Aquitania and Brittany. . .” 

“As Iberians, they are dolicho- or kumbo-cephalic; and of swarthy hue.” 

“The Iberians are styled ‘swarthy,’ and ‘curly-haired’.”  

“Thus the Negritos of Huxley, the owners of such skulls as those found in Caithness, may have been allied to the ancient Iberians. That the wild tribes of Ireland were black men is hinted by the fact that “a wild Irishman” is in Gaelic “a black Irishman” (Dubh Eireannach ).” 

(There are many resources like this out there, but since this is only an example for reference purposes and not my current topic for this article, I don’t want to be like a dog with a bone and drone on and on about this subject.) 

Despite the Cheddar Man revelation, a 2018 article from the BBC claims “The ancient population of Britain was almost completely replaced by newcomers about 4,500 years ago, a study shows.”  

Meaning, the Britons and other Europeans of yesteryear quoted by Benjamin Franklin, and in MacRitchie‘s book 138 years ago are not the ‘modern day’ English and Europeans you would find in the area today. 

While it is great Cheddar Man has been acknowledged to have dark skin, there are a plethora of bones, antiquities, historical annals and paintings that are periodically discredited, ignored, and demeaned by academia today under the guise of a ‘slow, but steady’ progress in revealing our world’s alleged hidden secrets. 

A Few Remaining Pirate Graves Investigated 

To recap points from my original Castlevania Season One article, I wrote: 

“…Similar to our world, if you’d believe those that say a clerical error mistaking a ‘J’  or “I” for a ‘1’ messed up our own written timeline.  The J standing for the Year of our lord Jesus, or that which he was known by the earlier Latin name, Iesus.   

As, there is no “J” in Hebrew.

This is a book I found on ebay related to astronomy, or a historical almanac. This may or may not be the inside of the book - note the date in the upper left page
This is a book I found on ebay related to astronomy, or a historical almanac. This may or may not be the inside of the book – note the date in the upper left page
Same book as above - can you see the way the 'I' is written in front of 756 at the bottom of the page?
Same book as above – can you see the way the ‘I’ is written in front of 756 at the bottom of the page?

This is one of many videos out there that I used for reference on this topic. 

If I can ever remember (or rediscover) the original video I watched on this topic long ago, I will link to it in an additional post. 

I used a pyrate grave as an example of a “J” signifying the “Year of Our Lord” in front of a dated year 713. 

a zoom in of the pirate grave in question - inscribed j713
a zoom in of the pirate grave in question – inscribed j713

Here is the link to the original photo on Flickr

Then, I mentioned and showed a reputed replica of a plague stone from the year 1 666. 

Replica 1666 plague stone from the Abbey House Museum in England
Replica 1666 plague stone from the Abbey House Museum in England

Which, admittedly bothered me for reasons I cannot adequately explain.* 

(The replica of a 1 666 plague stone featured at the Abbey House Museum in England.) 

So, where am I going with all of this? 

Plague Stones and Vandalism of Historic Objects And Sites 

Well…I did some digging for other plague stone photos archived on the internet.  

What I found through a simple, shallow search was a trend of vandalism not unheard of at sacred sites worldwide. 

A similar story to illustrate a growing (centuries-old) trend: 

“Utah Petroglyph Defaced Near Moab in Latest Vandalism”  

…Another Utah petroglyph has been defaced in the latest recent vandalism case of its kind in the Moab area.” 

What Were Plague Stones Really Used For? 

A blog simply known as “Roy’s Blog” focused a post on Cumbria, a place found on the borderline of England and Scotland, in 2015.  

Along with the stunning old architecture of bridges, there was one picture of interest relating to the plague stones of old. 

Cumbria plague stone that reputedly reads "Fear God Honor the King 1633"
Cumbria plague stone that reputedly reads “Fear God Honor the King 1633”

At the southeast corner of the Devil’s Bridge at Kirkby Lonsdale, lies a plague stone with an inscription reputed to read: 

“Fear God Honor the King 1633” 

Due to the age and nature of the photo, there is no option to ‘zoom in’ and decipher the inscription for ourselves. Likewise, a simple google search on my end led to no other images of this particular plague stone. 

Obviously from the nature of this post, one of two things bothered me: 

The rumination on whether or not the “1” in “1633” is written as J 633 or I 633 

And two: 

According to History.com, The Great Plague of 1665 was reputed to be the last of that century. With a reported “…plague resurfaced roughly every 10 years from 1348 to 1665—40 outbreaks in just over 300 years.”

Okay, that information is all fine and dandy but if these plagues were happening with such frequency – why are there no images of these stones left? 

And why on earth would a plague stone simply say “Fear God Honor the King 1633”? 

What on earth does the King have to do with the plague? 

I understand the whole “Feudal society revolved around the church, god, and the king etc.” but is that really the first thing you would think to put on a plague stone reportedly used to rinse money in vinegar

Coming from the Cabinet Magazine in Spring of 2014, an article details an “artist project” where a woman named Sophie Nys went around photographing Plague Stones. 

One of Sophie Nys images of a plague stone in Penrith, Cumbria being used as a trash can. Via Cabinet Magazine
One of Sophie Nys images of a plague stone in Penrith, Cumbria being used as a trash can. Via the Cabinet Magazine

Before listing a few choice photographs of plague stones, the author quotes a book titled “History of Derby” by historian William Hutton. 

According to Cabinet Magazine, “Hutton goes on to note that commercial relations were in fact governed during such times by sentiments that would have been anomalous without the presence of the disease. “Confidence,” he wrote, “raised by necessity, took place between buyer and seller, which never existed before or since; the first could not examine the value of his purchase, nor the second that of his money.” 

So, let’s pull up a scanned copy of History of Derby readily available for perusing on the Internet Archive. 

Which upon further inspection, details the briefly quoted passage on pages 194 – 195 respectively.   

“…Hither the market people, having their mouths primed with tobacco as a preservative, brought their provisions, stood at a distance from their property, and at a greater from the townspeople, with whom they were to traffic. “ 

Note: Etymology of Traffic: “c. 1500, “trade, commerce,” from  French trafique (15c.)” 

*Note: Tobacco was a “new world” crop exclusively grown in America at the time.  

The market people using tobacco as a preservative would denote ongoing travel and commerce between England and America, despite this reportedly devastating, 3-centuries long plague. 

Continuing on… “…The buyer was not suffered to touch any of the articles before purchase; but when the agreement was finished, he took the goods, and deposited the money in a vessel filled with vinegar, set for that purpose.” 

From this, Hutton never mentions the nature of apparatus used as a ‘vessel’ for intermediary exchange of goods. In addition, this would imply that merchants only traded at these stones. 

Was the majority population not eating? Why the scarcity of these stones today if they were major points of commerce, and used in most (if not all) exchanges of goods and services? 

To finish “A confidence, raised by necessity, took place between buyer and seller, which never existed before or since; the first could not examine the value of his purchase, nor the second that of his money. Such were the precautions taken by our forefathers against one of the most dreadful enemies of man. A small part of this cross is yet visible, joining the prison. It was observed that this cruel affliction never attempted the premises of a tobacconist, a tanner, or a shoe-maker. – A woman was pressed to death in the county-hall as a mute. ” 

 The book then continues on to the year 1673. 

(I don’t know about you, but it sounds like the words of Mr. William Hutton have revised themself in his own book, no?) 

Are Plague Stones Real? 

Another image by Sophie Nys, this time of a plague stone in Low Bentham, North Yorkshire - appearing to be seemingly underground
Another image by Sophie Nys, this time of a plague stone in Low Bentham, North Yorkshire – appearing to be seemingly underground

Aside from now finding the original quote from the Cabinet Magazine, I am left with more questions than answers.  

The transition from the “precautions taken by our forefathers” against “one of the most dreadful enemies of man” (with no mention of a plague by name) to the quick transition to an unrelated topic makes me think the book has been cut somewhere.  

Maybe the original had more related on the subject, and subsequent versions later written left out crucial bits and pieces of the story – as seems to be the trend in the literature of the late 18th – early 19th century onward. 

(In my own personal opinion as it stands, the validity of plague stones diminishes the more one researches into its subject.)

To end this segment, let us share the same quote from Cabinet Magazine once more, with additional commentary from their author. 

“Hutton goes on to note that commercial relations were in fact governed during such times by sentiments that would have been anomalous without the presence of the disease. “Confidence,” he wrote, “raised by necessity, took place between buyer and seller, which never existed before or since; the first could not examine the value of his purchase, nor the second that of his money.” 

Often neglected, their historical function almost entirely forgotten, many of these stones still stand across England. Artist Sophie Nys has been photographing these unusual monuments to the intricate relationship between disease, commerce, and compassion, some of which are depicted below.” 

So to wrap up and take stock: 

A plague stone located in Altofts, West Yorkshire, image taken by Sophie Nys. Note the hook denoting a previous structure adjoined to the lone pillar, the sloping terrain directly above, and the appearance of 666 in spray-paint
A plague stone located in Altofts, West Yorkshire, image taken by Sophie Nys. Note the hook denoting a previous structure adjoined to the lone pillar, the sloping terrain directly above, and the appearance of 666 in spray-paint

History.com claims plagues were ongoing every 10 years for 3 centuries. 

William Hutton claims in the second edition of his book (with additions) written in 1817 that “The buyer was not suffered to touch any of the articles before purchase; but when the agreement was finished, he took the goods, and deposited the money in a vessel filled with vinegar, set for that purpose.” 

Cabinet Magazine claims “…Often neglected, their historical function almost entirely forgotten, many of these stones still stand across England. 

An image of the one 'still standing' plague stone I could find online that has not been vandalized in any way, and still retains some sensibility in its form. Plague stone located in Brookhouse, Lancashire - image taken by Sophie Nys
An image of the one ‘still standing’ plague stone I could find online that has not been vandalized in any way, and still retains some sensibility in its form. Plague stone located in Brookhouse, Lancashire – image taken by Sophie Nys

So, a plague allegedly ravaged England on and off for three hundred years. Townsfolk purchased goods and conducted traffic through use of stones filled with vinegar, and other vessels.  

But today, the historical function of the stones used for commerce by all in villages afflicted with a deadly 300 years of continuous plagues were largely forgotten in this day and age? 

Does that make any goddamn sense to you? Or, is the true identity of the plague stones being used as a cover for some event in Europe that academia may not yet wish to realize? 

Elba the mesolithic woman
Process of the last face reconstruction of Elba, the Mesolithic woman discovered in a cave northwestern Spain. (Rubio Garcia/Real Press)

Above is the reconstructed face of Elba, the 9,000-year-old mesolithic woman found in Chando Lindeiro cave in Galicia, Spain.

In the Madrid Metropolitan article, “Scientists concluded that Elba had very dark skin, brown eyes and dark hair.” The article continues to point out that Elba is a contemporary Cheddar Man, with brown eyes rather than blue as:

“Such dark skin was common in other humans in Europe at the time.”

Note: Spain used to be known as Iberia, located with Portugal in the Iberian Peninsula.

More on Sophie Nys

Sophie Nys’ book “Vinegar Stones” is currently out of stock at Printed Matter, and one lone copy exists on Amazon for $80.00 at the current time of writing. 

An expose of Nys’ artwork that features an article about her research of Vinegar Stones during the “Black Death”, but fails to produce any actual images of said objects. 

Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below, and feel free to share any photos or knowledge you may have regarding these notoriously difficult-to-find plague stones, or anything related to the 300 years of plague that were largely forgotten about, somehow. 

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Author: In Asian Spaces

I write in my personal time and I haven't published much at all. I don't know if that qualifies me as a writer or not, but I'd like to change that. I have a deep passion for travel, cinema and (mainly) East Asian things, but I plan on writing various things to keep it spicy. Let's prosper together ~ よろしくおねがいします。

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