|“||Stronger than a human. My reflexes are faster, and I'm more resilient. I have to be. I'm a hunter.||”|
Vampires are the chief supernatural species within the Vampire Diaries series. By definition, a vampire is a corpse reanimated by supernatural forces and inhabited by the spirit of the deceased. Vampires are nocturnal by nature, as the touch of direct sunlight burns their skin, and are characterized by their need to drink blood.
The origin of the vampire race remains a mystery, but it is known that The Old Ones are the first vampires, as well as the most feared and powerful of all in existence. They have never been human and they have existed long ago before the pyramids were built. It is unknown when and how The Old Ones appeared, but Klaus says that his first memory is related to the Bronze Age (between 4500-3200 BC).
In The Return series, vampires destroyed are sent to the Netherworld, a purgatory of vampires. Possibly this place and the Dark Dimension are related to the beginning of The Old Ones as well as the vampires. In the books, The Old Ones do not stay together, Klaus arrived alone to Fell's Church and participated in major battles in history, but he mentions that it is one of The Old Ones, the Originals, confirmed that there are more of them.
Blood is the main component of a vampire's diet. If a vampire fails to drink blood, their body will become severely weak, and eventually die of starvation. The oldest vampires do not require a lot of blood, such as newborn (Katherine attacked a man for food, after that no mention of another victim). Likewise, Klaus was never seen killing a human for food.
Powers and Abilities
The supernatural forces that sustain them beyond death also endow them with superhuman physical and mental abilities.
- Mind Compulsion - The supernatural ability to control and manipulate the body, mind, and soul of an animal or person.
- Weather Control - The supernatural ability allows influence meteorological energy patterns, creating rain, wind, hail, lightning, snow, sleet, fog and temperature changes.
- Elemental Manipulation - The supernatural ability to control and manipulate the elements of air, earth, fire, water, lightning, etc.
- Animal Control - The supernatural ability can handle all kinds of wild animals or domestic. Normally you can only control a species at a time.
- Healing Factor - The supernatural ability to heal all infections and injuries at an accelerated speed.
- Immortality - The supernatural ability of eternal life and youth.
- Super Senses - The supernatural ability to hear, see, smell, and also taste beyond the human limit.
- Shapeshifting - The supernatural ability to alter and change the physical form of ones self.
- Super Speed - The supernatural ability to jump, move and run at superhuman velocity.
- Super Strength - The supernatural ability of abnormal physical strength sufficient to single-handedly lift even an overweight grown man high off the ground by the throat and hurl him across a long room with enough speed and force to send him through a wall. As predators of humans, vampires are naturally stronger than their prey; they generally have the advantage of superior strength when in a bodily battle with a human, allowing them to restrain and manhandle grown men with relative ease. While limited, the exact limit of their strength remains vague. Another critical factor to a vampire's strength is his or her age; older vampires are stronger than younger, weaker vampires. Other feats of their considerable strength include striking opponents with enough force to break bones even by accident, snapping necks without effort, jumping several feet into the air in a single bound, and ripping out a person's heart.
- Illusion Casting - It is capable of disrupting the reality of one or more things at once. The Illusion is limited, since it uses a short time but because the neutralization of the enemy and does not usually give orders to the victims.
- Telepathy - The supernatural ability can communicate mentally with other vampires without physical contact and long distances. It also allows one to probe the minds of others.
Unlike the television series, vampires in the novel are more severely affected by weaknesses the stronger they are.
- Decapitation: The act of dismembering or removing the head of a vampire will result in death.
- Fire or Sunlight: Any exposure to fire or sunlight will result in death to a vampire.
- Heart Extraction: The act of removing a vampire's heart will result in death.
- Uninvited: A vampire cannot enter a home without an invitation from the homeowner.
- Wood: If a vampire is wounded by wood it will cause the vampire to become severely weak. However, if a wooden stake is penetrated through a vampire's heart, it will result in instant death.
- Running Water: A vampire can not cross above running water but can tunnel beneath it.
- Veil Matter (Ghost): A vampire can not hurt and defeat a ghost. But ghosts can manifest and send a vampire to a place where you can not do more damage.
- Vervain: Like in the show, Vervain is harmful to a vampire and protects from mind control.
- Religious Symbols: Stefan mentions that religious symbols (crosses and the like) will boost a person's mental resistance tremendously but only if the user truly believes it will protect them.
Physical & Psychological Traits
The emotions of vampires are far more intense than the emotions of humans. Anger, depression, happiness, love, sadness, etc. are more powerful and much more overwhelming than when they were as a living human. This explains why newborn vampires are easily annoyed, due their unsettling feelings, they will continue to have mood swings until they adjust to their new emotions. Physically, vampires have human form although their canines elongate into fangs when they feed and, because their bodies are technically deceased, they can be characterised by lack of heartbeat as well as body heat. However, the Old Ones were never human, but have physical form. It has not been revealed if they have another form.
Virtually all vampires were originally humans who were converted into vampires, the only exception being the Old Ones, who were supposedly either born or created as vampires. In order for a human to become a vampire, they must die within 24 hours after consuming vampire blood. The nature of the human's death is irrelevant, however the body must be preserved and able to function upon reanimation. If the human is killed by decapitation, fire or corrosives, damage to or removal of the heart, or excessive loss of body mass, reanimation will not occur. Upon physical death, the magic of the vampire blood prevents the spirit from leaving its corpse, causing the undead body to awaken in a state of transition. In order to complete the transition, the pre-vampire must consume an exceptional amount of fresh human blood within the next 24 hours or else he or she will die.
The Old Ones
|Klaus †||Solomon †||Celine †||Benevenuto †||Alexander †||Davos †|
|Chihiro †||Gunnar †||Cristian †||Milimo †||Pachacuti †|
|Vampire Army †||European Lady||Katherine von Swartzschild †||Sage||Anne Grimmsdotir †||Sophia Alexiou †||Abioye Ogunwale †|
|Jessalyn D'Aubigne||Jack †||Chivean †|
|Ethan Crane †||Stefan Salvatore †||Damon Salvatore|
|Vitale Society †||Elena Gilbert||Damaris|
- In the series, initially the fog (weather control) and animal control were used by Damon but were removed.
- Usually confuse the abilities: Weather Manipulation and Elemental Control.
- The first directly affects the environment and nature can change drastically from one place, the second is able to use elements of their environment but is usually used one at a time and its scope is limited to what is seen.
- In the books, there is only one accurate generation of vampires, starts with Klaus and ends with Elena.
- Klaus turned Katherine, she then turned Damon and Stefan, and finally Stefan turned Elena.
- In the books "The Hunters", Cristian Sulez is no longer a vampire and his sister Meredith is not supernatural. However, in the original series were both derived from a species of vampires.
- In Dark Reunion, Tyler mentions that Klaus made a pact with "the Devil", however, not set if it is real or not this information, as well as the origin of Klaus and The Old Ones.