Why do vampires react to silver in such a lethal way?

Garlic, sunlight, holy water, stake, etc...Those are old school vampire kryptonite, but in contemporary movies, it's anything that has a silver content that really does the job in killing off a vampire...What's the theory behind that in terms of what it does to a vampire's bloodstream?


Silver bullets--Underworld

Silver particles in the airconditioning vents--Blade 3

Update 2:

Ok if not originally used on vampires, then werewolves...Still wondering why is silver lethal on such creatures, though?

17 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favourite answer

    Because of the mysticism surrounding silver's lunar associations, as well as the aesthetic qualities of the white, reflective metal that cause it to be associated with purity, silver in European Folklore has long been traditionally believed to be an antidote to various maladies and fictional monsters. Notably, silver was believed to be a repellant against vampires (this primarily originates from its holy connotations; also, mirrors were originally polished silver, and as such, vampires allegedly cannot be seen in them because they are wicked) and it was believed that a werewolf, in his bestial form, could only be killed by a weapon or bullet made of silver, and was equally effective against vampires, as described in Eastern European folklore. This has given rise to the term "silver bullet," which is used to describe things designed to cure or fix a wide array of maladies.

    Source(s): Answer was taken from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silver#Superstition
  • 1 decade ago

    Silver was one of the more common metals in biblical days and was favored by the church for making jewelry. Most of the "cures" for warding off vampires/werewolves etc were made by the church and was easily obtained by the general population. Garlic, could be grown in the backyard, sunlight, easy (evil=darkness), holy water, the church had an endless supply, just have the priest bless another bucket, stakes, cheap wood. Plus special effect just plain look cooler with something more contemporary to work with.

  • 1 decade ago

    In the film Dracula 2000, which is very interesting if you get a chance to see it, they explain that silver is offensive because of 30 silver pieces that Judas received for betraying Jesus. They also portray sunlight is lethal but they don't explain why. Also that the only way to kill a vampire is to pierce their heart or behead them. The traditional garlic, holy water, religious memorabilia does nothing.

  • 1 decade ago

    Some of these come from how people react to things with the illnesses mistaken for Vampireism. Some of these are Allergies people have (people do have allergies to certain metals).

    But I would think a good point to it might be that Silver and Gold are supposed to be Holy metals in a few religions. Being such in some cases certain beings cannot touch them, some beings are drawn to them,.. and some beings are so repulsed just makeing the metal clink drives them mad.

  • What do you think of the answers? You can sign in to give your opinion on the answer.
  • 1 decade ago

    Some interesting answers here, and the whole Silver vs. Vampires thing is new to the pop culture (movie/TV) mythos of vampires. Could it be that because while some people are allergic to gold of varying carats (10, 14 white gold) that it couldn't be trusted to be a true indicator of vampirism/lycanthropy, that silver because of its universal human acceptance has become a more accurate lithmus test?

  • elks
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    Does Silver Kill Vampires

  • 6 years ago

    Bear with me here I m going to do my best to do this justice.

    In the New Testament, Judas Iscariot betrays Jesus by selling him out for pieces of silver. After realizing what he s done, he tries to give back the silver in exchange for Jesus because it is unclean, but the guards will not take it back.

    Judas, being hit with the full weight that he is the reason the Son of God is going to be crucified, goes and hangs himself and, according to lore, becomes the First Vampire. Silver is lethal to any monster and unclean creature, because essentially it was the reason that the only truly perfect and clean individual on the Earth was sentenced to death by an unclean and evil world.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    They are starting to blur the lines in horror/monster movies. Silver was always the way to kill werewolves, but now they say vampires too? Odd. Next they will be staking werewolves to the ground.

    Source(s): Silver bullets in underworld were for the lichens, and the vampire lichen mixes.
  • 1 decade ago

    Another little known fact ..Water when infused with silver particles works better then most anti-biotics .. it can kill most bacterial infections .. Vampirism has been believed to be a blood disease..

  • 5 years ago

    No we don't react to silver. People make up stories that I am so sick of listening to.

Still have questions? Get answers by asking now.