The popular image of a vampire: a cloaked monster that hunts for victims at night
People have been dreaming up horrible monsters and malicious spirits for centuries. The vampire, a seductive, "undead" predator, is one of the most inventive and alluring creatures of the bunch. It's also one of the most enduring: Vampire-like creatures date back thousands of years, and pop up in dozens of different cultures.

In this article, we'll see where the various elements of the vampire legend come from, and we'll examine some grounded scientific explanations for apparent vampirism. We'll also look at the psychological significance of these creatures and find out about some real-life counterparts to the supernatural vampire.