Countess Elizabeth Báthory de Ecsed (1560 - 1614) was a countess from the renowned Báthory family of Hungarian nobility. Although in modern times she has been labeled the most prolific female serial killer in history, evidence of her alleged crimes is scant and her guilt is debated. She is nevertheless remembered as the "Blood Countess" or "Blood Queen."
After her husband's death, she and four collaborators were accused of torturing and killing hundreds of girls and young women, with one witness attributing to them over 600 victims, though the number for which they were convicted was 80. Elizabeth herself was neither tried nor convicted. In 1610, however, she was imprisoned in the Csejte Castle, now in Slovakia and known as Čachtice, where she remained bricked in a set of rooms until her death four years later.
Later writings about the case have led to legendary accounts of the Countess bathing in the blood of virgins in order to retain her youth and subsequently also to comparisons with Vlad III the Impaler of Wallachia, on whom the fictional Count Dracula is partly based, and to modern nicknames of the Blood Countess and Countess Dracula.