There are two possibilities for where Vlad Tepes gained the title “Dracul” This title was bestowed upon the members of an ancient chivalric Christian order known as the Order of the Dragon, with “Dracul” being the Romanian word for Dragon. The order was a very exclusive club, with only 24 members in its inner circle, but Vlad’s kingdom of Wallachia guaranteed him admission. Vlad’s territory bordered Muslim and Christian territory, which meant that if either side wished to invade the other they had no choice but to pass through his lands. Eager to solidify the allegiance of Tepes, he was inducted into the order, like his father, and was given the title along with the ceremonial medallion, which all members wore even in death. He also decided to emboss the Dragon on his armor, which guaranteed that everyone took notice of his membership.
Dracula however means, “son of the dragon” or “little dragon” which seemed to indicate his father’s former allegiances and his son’s newly inherited title.