See the Rare 1946 Cover Art for Dracula in Istanbul

The first printing of Kazıklı Voyvoda, the “bootleg” Turkish rewrite of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, was in 1928 in the Ottoman script and sported a simple leather binding. But its second edition, published in 1946 in the Latin alphabet, featured an illustration on the jacket.

However, the book was printed very cheaply with a paper cover, and the past 70 years have not been kind to those copies that still exist. In fact, when I bought one myself I thought that there was no art at all—just a dark gray mass with the title at the top. It was only when I squinted that I could make out some lines and shade, badly faded. So I scanned it into Photoshop and brightened it up considerably. You can see it here:

The illustration depicts a frightened woman in modern dress, perhaps Şadan (Lucy) or Güzin (Mina); a line-art rendering of Dracula’s castle; and the floating head of the sinister Count himself—looking presciently like Atif Kaptan’s portrayal of him in the 1953 film adaptation. There are also certainly similarities to some of the early editions of Dracula, which featured the disembodied eyes of the Count looming ominously above a sleeping woman.

Interested in the book itself? Dracula in Istanbul: The Unauthorized Version of the Gothic Classic, on sale September 13, presents the first ever English-language version of Kazıklı Voyvoda. It’s our first book! You should buy it!

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