In the NovelEdit
A doctor, philosopher, and metaphysician who is the prior mentor of D. Seward. Called by Dr. Seward to help Lucy, he uses his knowledge of both new and old age medicine to diagnose her and offer his assistance. Mina describes the doctor as of medium height, strong build, with red hair, and eyes that change along with his mood (Stoker, 259). Van Helsing is used in this narrative as a foil character to Dracula. His kind and goodly nature as described by Doctor Seward is the counter to Dracula's dark and manipulative characteristics
As "one of the most advanced scientists of his day, and he has, I believe, an absolutely open mind. This, with an iron nerve, a temper of the ice-brook, and indomitable resolution, self-command, and toleration exalted from virtues to blessings, and the kindliest and truest heart that beats, these form his equipment for the noble work that he is doing for mankind, work both in theory and practice, for his views are as wide as his all-embracing sympathy" (Stoker, 161). Stoker retaliates against his naturally pure nature when at one point Abraham is almost seduced by one of Drac's wives (Stoker, 530).
In his Memorandum he describes, "She was so fair to look on, so radiantly beautiful, so exquisitely voluptuous, that the very instinct of man in me, which calls some of my sex to love and to protect one of hers, made my head whirl with new emotion." For a man who previously stated that he could not divorce his wife even though she is insane, Van Helsing finally gives into a tempestuous lust, only to be broken by Mina's screams. His fascination with a "fallen woman" figure of sexuality almost corrupts his mission This demonstrates the Victorian belief of the time of a fallen woman who has relationships outside of marriage is a seductress in which men of course find it difficult to control themselves around. Van Helsing eventually kills all three wives and aides Jonathan and Quincy in turning Drac to dust.
- (2017) Desire2Learn 5 April 2017 (Movie)
- Bram Stoker's Dracula (Novel)