OT almost entirely: Radu Florescu, 88, Scholar of Dracula, and the OED

George Thompson george.thompson at NYU.EDU
Sun Jun 1 00:25:12 UTC 2014

JB, quoting the NYTimes:
 "Have you ever seen Count Dracula and Vlad the Impaler in the same place
at the same time?"

It seems to me that this is a formula -- "Have you ever seen X and Y
together"?, or, as here, "in the same place at the same time?" -- that I
have encountered from time to time of late, usually written with a
humorously raised eyebrow.
Any evidence of its origin?


On Thu, May 29, 2014 at 10:15 AM, Joel S. Berson <Berson at att.net> wrote:

> The famous Margalit Fox -- check the ADS-L archives -- has written
> another elegant and sly obituary, this time about Radu Florescu, who
> died on May 18.  In the NYTimes -- at least the New England Edition
> -- May 29, page B17.  (For unknown reasons, the on-line Times won't
> give it to me.  Search results for, say, "Dracula", Newest first, are
> to say the least peculiar; and a search for "Margalit Fox"
> produces  zero results in the Past 7 Days.)  Anyhoo, juicy excerpts:
> [Opening paragraphs:]
>      "Have you ever seen Count Dracula and Vlad the Impaler in the
> same place at the same time?
>      "Of course not, and that, according to Radu Florescu, is
> precisely the point: The two men, he argued, were one and the same."
> ...
>      "By day, Professor taught at Boston College, where, at his
> death, he was an emeritus professor of history ..."
> [One intervening paragraph.]
>      "But thanks to his moonlight job, Professor Florescu was for
> four decades also one of the world's leading experts in matters Dracular."
> [This is the minimally relevant bit:  Dracular (adj.) not in
> OED.  But 'll bet the professor and the count also were never seen in
> the same place at the same time.]
> ...
>      "As he would learn in the course of his research, he had a
> family connection to Vlad, who was known familiarly if not quite
> fondly as Vlad Tepes, or Vlad the Impaler. A Florescu ancestor was
> said to have married Vlad's brother, felicitously named Radu the Handsome."
> ...
>      "Both Vlad and Count Dracula displayed marked criminal
> proclivities: Vlad was know for dispatching his Ottoman foes (as may
> as 100,000 in some accounts) with sharpened stakes. Dracula, who did
> not care for stakes, favored a more direct approach."
> [And the concluding paragraph:]
>      "If, in his second career, Professor Florescu risked the
> opprobrium of some ivory-tower colleagues, he seemed unperturbed. At
> Dracula conventions around the world -- and there are many -- he
> sometimes materialized wearing a cape, a reliable indication that
> when it came to Stoker's sanguinary protagonist, Professor Florescu
> did not mind sticking his neck out."
> RIP.
> Joel
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

George A. Thompson
The Guy Who Still Looks Stuff Up in Books.
Author of A Documentary History of "The African Theatre", Northwestern
Univ. Pr., 1998..

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list