Bucket of Blood is a classic Eastern European folktale involving a peasant who meets a stranger clad in worn and spotty clothing while riding past a cemetery at night. After taking in the man who requests a ride to the nearest village. As they peasant and mysterious man approach homes, the man proclaims many houses are “locked,” along the path of the village yet each locked house is adorned with a cross along the walkway. After time the pair walk up to a house with a padlock on the gate which proceeds to open by itself. On a nearby bench sits an old man and young boy in which the stranger places a bucket and proceeds to cut and bleed both the boy and man and consumes their blood. After his feeding has been relinquished the blood clad man proclaims for the pair to proceed to his place, as the sun is rising in which they are taken to said place in a “flash.” As they land in the area the vampire fails at a sudden attack on the peasant who is saved by the break of dawn, the village after finding the man find the man in a puddle of blood and proceed to impale him with an aspen wood stake.
Meaning and Background == This, along with many other short Folk Stories like: The Sorceress, and The Werewolf’s Daughter tell stories about the superstitions of men and their beastly counterparts that usually include a moral based off the happenings in the story. In the Bucket of Blood, it can be seen that a subtle moral embedded into this story was the consequences of not having faithfully protections around you. As the main reason the man and boy were bled and consumed was because they did not have a cross to protect their home. This story implies that superstition was a primary cultural point to these early Slavic/Eastern European cultures, and that stories like these were made to put enough fear for the person hearing it to equally spread the importance of religion in their communities.
Theme: The SunEdit
One important theme in early vampire tales, like Bucket of Blood is, the power of the sun, or more specifically the lack of power a vampire has once the sun come up, in that it cannot carry out its vampirical duties for whatever reason. In this tale, the vampire just disappears at the cock’s crow. In The Peasant and the Corpse, we are introduced to the need for a coffin lid to block out the sun and the weapons of men, who would try to hurt him. Later on though, this gets magnified in other ways. In some later tales, such as Bram Stoker’s Dracula, the vampire’s powers are simply weakened at the rising sun. He chooses to spend the daylight in a coffin to store up his energy, but it is not a necessary confinement. In the adaptation of Anne Rice’s book Interview with the Vampire, we see a need for a coffin, not because the vampire will lose its strength in the sun, but because the sun will destroy them, such as in Claudia’s Death Scene. This is just one example of this, this particular view has become quite common throughout vampire lore as a way for humans to triumph over vampires. This could also link back to the fact that vampire myths originally started as a way to encourage people into the church, the thought that at night, there were terrible beasts that, at least in early folklore such as Bucket of Blood, attacked people without crosses on their homes. It is only through the sunlight, or light of God, that they can be saved. This theme, much like other aspects of vampire lore has shifted over time, which helps it remain relevant. No longer are vampire tales told to frighten people into going to church, but they are used to represent other issues in today’s society, all of which can be destroyed if they are brought to light.
COMPARISIONS TO OTHERSTORIES
“Bucket of Blood” is a lot like the other short stories that we have read, because they share common themes of vampirism. In both “Buck of Blood ”along with “Death at the Wedding ”the sorcerers summon strangers to take them on their hunt either to go to a wedding or to the cottage. In both of these short stories the peasant and the soldier are unaware that these people are sorceress(vampires) until they make a surprise attack on someone. The attacks that were made resulted getting into a brawl the human and them fearing for their lives. After both of these brawls the sorcerers fall to their ultimate death. “Bucket of Blood ” also relates in some ways to “The Peasant and the Corpse ” Right away in both stories the peasants were minded their own business when a sorcerer surprised them. In all three of these stories mentioned the humans did not expect to be greeted by a sorcerer nor did they know the danger they were about to be in. It is a common theme in these stories that the humans first feel terrified and intimidated by the sorcerer’s when they find out what they really are. The sorceress inflict fear upon all of the humans they come across to show that they are the ones with the upper hand in the situation. All of the sorcerers although in different situations try to to possess all of the power in every relationship. Yes, they are more powerful and harder to kill but in each of these short stories the sorceress all fall to their death or end up being the ones whom are scared. In fact according to "The-Artifice " Vampire's or Sorcererss inflicting fear on humans is a very common theme even today in movies such as "Twilight" and the popular TV shows now playing.