In the novel Dracula, Stoker brings up “The eve of St. George’s day” which fall on May 4th in the novel (varies depending on which religion is being followed), St. George’s day, was the time of the pagan end of the agricultural year, the monasteries believed that they could collect the debts owed to them at that time before the peasants moved somewhere else. There is also a legend that states he was the man who saves a village from a dragon. On the eve of St. George’s day the ‘peasants’ of the time believed that, that night was when evil beings (i.e. witches, warlocks) power was at its highest. Some of the things people would do to protect their cattle from witches was to decorate them with garlands (wraiths). They also put great importance on their seventh child; they believed that child was the world’s greatest protection against evil.
In the novel stoker describes the eve of St. George’s day, as the day in which evil beings can do anything they want. I believe Stoker included this in the novel, to give background information on the country people and their beliefs. Also I think he is foreshadowing what will soon happen to Jonathan in the count’s castle. It was another reason why foreign countries were so scary, these counties have crazy superstitious beliefs no wonder they’re uncivilized. As the story progresses and Jonathan meets the count in Transylvania, and discovers what he is, the readers of that time might have thought that the people who spoke with Jonathan about their beliefs might not be so crazy, and now that evil being is trying to get to their home country, and bring chaos to their civilized nation.
*picture is of a protective circle, said to protect the person inside from evil.