Movement of Vampiric Literature & the Preservation of the Oldest Surviving Romanesque Chapel in Ireland (Cormac’s Chapel)


I am examining the movement and development of the figure of the vampire, and vampiric literature, through geographical borders during the nineteenth-century.  Using Storymap, I explored the different settings in my primary texts. Seeing the distance put between different stories allowed me to understand in a better sense the growth of the vampiric figure and vampiric literature through this time. For my second visualisation, I used Juxtapose to compare two depictions of the northern doorway of Cormac’s Chapel, located at the Rock of Cashel, with one hand-drawn picture from 1905 compared to a recent photo taken in the 2010s. As an information officer in the Office of Public Works, and working at the Rock of Cashel, it was interesting to see the differences in portrayals of the north door. By using Juxtapose, I also found it interesting to see how much the door has been affected by erosion and wear and tear.

Visualisation 1 (Timeline about Vampiric Literature and Movement – Storymap)

In my first visualisation, I used data from the primary texts of my thesis and plotted a geographical map of vampiric literature published during the nineteenth-century. I formed a linear timeline with the dates of publication for each of the texts, making sure I had an accurate view of how the vampire developed over a century. Once I had a timeline established, I took the geographical settings of each text and put it into Storymap’s formula. After putting in the information from five texts, I had a map plotted which gave me a better understanding of how much the figure of the vampire moved throughout the nineteenth century, but also how vampiric literature developed over this period too.

Visualisation 2 (Cormac’s Chapel Drawing vs Actual Picture – Juxtapose)

Using Wikicommons, I found two images of the northern door of Cormac’s Chapel – one hand-drawn from 1905, and the other taken by camera within the last few years. Putting them into Juxtapose, I saw the differences between the two immediately – not only in the form of the image, but in the erosion and general wear and tear of the stone over time. While I could have compared these two images in different windows on-screen, Juxtapose allowed me to fit the two images together and slide from one to the other, offering a more enhanced comparison between the two. Although it proved difficult to find two images taken at the same angle and composition, and two in the same form, Juxtapose allows for a comparison between the two all the same.