Forget all that you know about seductive, sparkling vampires. Those depictions were all developed by writers over the past couple of centuries.
Before then, your average vampire was a much more terrible prospect. It rose from graves in all stages of decomposition; it returned home to its family and killed them.
The classic tale, during the vampire hysteria of the 17th and 18th centuries, involved a household receiving a knock on the door. The visitor would be known to all. It would be their deceased mother, father, sibling or child. It either wouldn't speak at all, or would demand sustenance.
The horrified family would provide bread or broth. But that wasn't what the animated corpse was after.
Soon members of the family would be discovered drained of all blood and quite dead. Or else they would fade slowly, awaking each morning appearing more pale and wan than before. Eventually they too would die and be buried. Then the family would await their return, knowing that it was practically inevitable.
These stories tended to escalate during times of plague or outbreaks of tuberculosis. It's easy to see it as a metaphor for the epidemics themselves, which often took out whole families one by one. But there was much more to it than that.
Fearing actual vampires, bodies would be exhumed. With little knowledge of the stages of decay, the vampire hunters would be confronted with bloated corpses, or some which seemed remarkably well preserved. They would have nails and hair, which appeared to have grown in the grave. Red fluid dripped from various orifices.
All of these things are quite natural. But for those viewing it first hand, there was no way of knowing that. All they saw was evidence that this corpse was in momentary slumber, after having risen in the night to gorge on its own surviving family.
A variation on this theme occurred in the 1980s, when the spread of AIDS. sparked a parallel outbreak of vampire novels. Those all concentrated upon the blood aspects, though the creatures themselves were now steeped in the glamor of the post-Dracula genre.