Cuentos Clásicos del Norte, Primera Serie

By Edgar Allan Poe

Page 72

conexión alguna en su caprichoso arreglo,
que pudiera contribuir a que se conserve en la memoria. La habitación,
situada en una alta torrecilla del castillo de la abadía, era de forma
pentagonal y de gran tamaño. Ocupando todo el frente sur del pentágono,
había una ventana única, una lámina inmensa de cristal pulido de
Venecia, un solo trozo de vidrio plomizo, de manera que los rayos del
sol o de la luna, al atravesarla, arrojaban un resplandor fantástico
sobre los objetos del interior. En la parte superior de esta enorme
ventana extendía su tejido una antigua vid que colgaba de los macizos
muros del torreón. El techo, de tétrico roble, era excesivamente alto,
abovedado y primorosamente esculpido con los tipos más extravagantes y
grotescos de un estilo mitad gótico, mitad druídico. Del dibujo central
de esta sombría cúpula pendía, de una cadena de oro de largos eslabones,
un inmenso incensario del mismo metal, de modelo sarraceno, y con muchas
perforaciones combinadas en tal forma que oscilaba dentro y fuera de
ellas, como dotada de serpentina vitalidad, una continua sucesión de
fuegos de colores.

Divanes orientales y candelabros dorados veíanse por varios lados; y
había también un lecho, el lecho nupcial, de sólido ébano esculpido,
ejemplar indio, muy bajo, y con un dosel semejando una urna funeraria.
En cada uno de los ángulos del cuarto se levantaba un gigantesco
sarcófago de negro granito, extraído de las tumbas de los reyes frente a
Lúxor, y con su antigua cubierta exornada de esculturas de tiempo
inmemorial. Pero en la tapicería de la cámara, sobre todo, se mostraba,
¡ay de mí! la fantasía capital de todo aquello. Los elevados muros, de
altura gigantesca y casi desproporcionada, estaban revestidos de arriba
abajo en amplios pliegues de una tapicería pesada y casi sólida, del
mismo tejido que descollaba como alfombra en el pavimento, como cubierta
en los divanes y en el lecho de ébano, como drapería en el dosel y como
magníficas volutas en las cortinas que cubrían parcialmente la ventana.
El tejido era de la más rica tela de oro. Estaba salpicado por todas
partes, a intervalos irregulares, de arabescos de un pie de diámetro,
laborados sobre la tela en dibujos del más puro negro de azabache. Pero
aquellas figuras ostentaban su verdadero estilo arabesco solamente
cuando se las contemplaba desde cierta línea visual. Por una disposición
bastante generalizada ahora, pero que se remonta a un período de gran
antigüedad, se las había dotado de aspecto cambiante. Para el que
entraba en la habitación tenían simplemente la apariencia de
monstruosidades; pero, al avanzar un poco más, su forma cambiaba
gradualmente; y paso a paso,

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Text Comparison with The Fall of the House of Usher

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I say insufferable; for the feeling was unrelieved by any of that half-pleasureable, because poetic, sentiment, with which the mind usually receives even the sternest natural images of the desolate or terrible.
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I have said that the sole effect of my somewhat childish experiment--that of looking down within the tarn--had been to deepen.
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Minute fungi overspread the whole exterior, hanging in a fine tangled web-work from the eaves.
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Feeble gleams of encrimsoned light made their way through the trellised panes, and served to render sufficiently distinct the more prominent objects around; the eye, however, struggled in vain to reach the remoter angles of the chamber, or the recesses of the vaulted and fretted ceiling.
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And now in the mere exaggeration of the prevailing character of these features, and of the expression they were wont to convey, lay so much of change that I doubted to whom I spoke.
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" I learned, moreover, at intervals, and through broken and equivocal hints, another singular feature of his mental condition.
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Yet I should fail in any attempt to convey an idea of the exact character of the studies, or of the occupations, in which he involved me, or led me the way.
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III.
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But evil things, in robes of sorrow, Assailed the monarch's high estate; (Ah,.
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let us mourn, for never morrow Shall dawn upon him, desolate!) And, round about his home, the glory That blushed and bloomed Is but a dim-remembered story, Of the old time entombed.
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have previously hinted) with the gray stones of the home of his forefathers.
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The door, of massive iron, had been, also, similarly protected.
Page 13
The once occasional huskiness of his tone was heard no more; and a tremulous quaver, as if of extreme terror, habitually characterized his utterance.
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It was, indeed, a tempestuous yet sternly beautiful night, and one wildly singular in its terror and its beauty.
Page 15
Here, it will be remembered, the words of the narrative run thus: "And Ethelred, who was by nature of a doughty heart, and who was now mighty withal, on account of the powerfulness of the wine which he had drunken, waited no longer to hold parley with the hermit, who, in sooth, was of an obstinate and maliceful turn, but, feeling the rain upon his shoulders, and fearing the rising of the tempest, uplifted his mace outright, and, with blows, made quickly room in the plankings of the door for his gauntleted hand; and now pulling therewith sturdily, he so cracked, and ripped, and tore all asunder, that the noise of the dry and hollow-sounding wood alarmed and reverberated throughout the forest.
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" Here again I paused abruptly, and now with a feeling of wild amazement--for there could be no doubt whatever that, in this instance, I did actually hear (although from what direction it proceeded I found it impossible to say) a low and apparently distant, but harsh, protracted, and most unusual screaming or grating sound--the exact counterpart of what my fancy had already conjured up for the dragon's unnatural shriek as described by the romancer.
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the way before him, and approached valorously over the silver pavement of the castle to where the shield was upon the wall; which in sooth tarried not for his full coming, but fell down at his feet upon the silver floor, with a mighty great and terrible ringing sound.
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