Selections from Poe

By Edgar Allan Poe

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...SELECTIONS FROM POE

Edited with Biographical and Critical Introduction and Notes

BY

J. MONTGOMERY GAMBRILL

Head of the Department...

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... BRIDAL BALLAD
SILENCE
THE CONQUEROR WORM
...

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...boy was thereafter known as Edgar Allan
Poe. He was a beautiful and precocious child, who...

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...and efficient service, he procured through Mr. Allan (who
was temporarily reconciled to him) an appointment...

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...literary,
editorial, and hack work, finally becoming editor of _Graham's
Magazine_, which prospered greatly under his management,...

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...of; this had
happened again and again, leaving her weaker each time. As the summer
and fall...

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...was for his dead wife, which he recorded shortly before his death
in the exquisite lyric,...

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...often through his own faults, the man became
irritable, impatient, often morose. He had always suffered...

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...struggled desperately against his
weakness,--an unequal struggle, since the craving was inherited, and
fostered by environment, circumstances,...

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...resisted,
doubtless a less self-absorbed man would have thought of his wife's
happiness as well as of...

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...cursed with a
temperament. His mind was analytical and imaginative, and gave no
thought to the ethical....

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...first really
notable production; it is an exquisite tribute of his reverent
devotion to his boyhood friend,...

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...a soul worn out by long suffering, groping for courage and
hope, only to return again...

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...of course, of the immense
force derivable from _totality_.... In the brief tale, however,
the author is...

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...a tale of the Spirit of
Pestilence and of Death victorious over human selfishness and power,
is...

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...criticism to contemporary literature,
undoubtedly with good effect. His attacks on didacticism were
especially valuable. His strength...

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...the dead author
very black indeed, and his account is now generally considered unfair.

In 1874-1875 "The...

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...that could be desired, but unfortunately it is
unsympathetic. Mr. Woodberry assumed a coldly judicial...

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... 5
...

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...in the wild-wood I did lie,
A child--with a most knowing eye. ...

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... 10
To seek a shelter in some happier star?
Hast thou...

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... 15

And they...

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... 50
...

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...glass;
No swellings tell that winds may be
Upon some far-off happier sea;
No heavings hint that winds...

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... 25
Above the closed and fringéd lid
'Neath...

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...be read--the funeral song be sung, ...

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... 10
Nothing there is motionless,
Nothing save...

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...wan light of the hornéd moon,
The swift and silent lizard of the stones. ...

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... And all the flowers were mine.

Ah, dream too bright to last!
Ah, starry...

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... ...

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... 20
And this the plighted vow;
And though my faith...

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... ...

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... 5
From an ultimate...

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... ...

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...so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That...

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...hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning--little relevancy bore; ...

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... 75
On the cushion's velvet lining that the...

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...Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just...

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... 5
For the resurrection of deep-buried faith
In truth, in virtue, in humanity;
Of all...

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... ...

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... 60

I replied--"This is nothing but dreaming:
Let us on...

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...of Weir."



TO ----


Not long ago the writer of these lines,
In the mad pride of intellectuality,
Maintained...

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...from out
A full-orbed moon, that, like thine own soul, soaring
Sought a precipitate pathway up through...

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...hope;
How silently serene a sea of pride; ...

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...the leaf where now are peering
Eyes scintillating soul, there lie _perdus_
Three eloquent words...

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...That burned in my brain. ...

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...pansies,
With rue and the beautiful ...

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...in the sky,
For it sparkles with Annie:
It glows with the light
Of...

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...and the chiming of the bells! ...

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... 80
All alone,
And who...

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...5
Than to love and be loved by me.

I was a child and she...

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...In her sepulchre there by the sea, ...

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... 20
Down the Valley of the Shadow,
Ride, boldly ride,"
The shade replied,
"If you seek...

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...dwelling, and gazed
down--but with a shudder even more thrilling than before--upon the
remodelled and inverted images...

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..."House of Usher"--an appellation which seemed to
include, in the minds of the peasantry who used...

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...thence conducted me, in silence,
through many dark and intricate passages in my progress to the...

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...had been at all times remarkable. A
cadaverousness of complexion; an eye large, liquid, and luminous
beyond...

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...weight. He
suffered much from a morbid acuteness of the senses; the most insipid
food was alone...

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...When a door, at length, closed upon her, my
glance sought instinctively and eagerly the countenance...

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...in vain
endeavor to educe more than a small portion which should lie within
the compass of...

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...head.
In the monarch Thought's dominion,
It stood there;
Never seraph spread a pinion
Over...

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...evidence--the
evidence of the sentience--was to be seen, he said (and I here started
as he spoke),...

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...no means an
unnatural, precaution.

At the request of Usher, I personally aided him in the arrangements
for...

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...terror, habitually
characterized his utterance. There were times, indeed, when I thought
his unceasingly agitated mind was...

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...had so long endured, and I even welcomed his presence
as a relief.

"And you have not...

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...wild overstrained air of vivacity with which he
hearkened, or apparently hearkened, to the words of...

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...harsh, and withal so piercing, that Ethelred had
fain to close his ears with his hands...

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...measured rocking movement of Usher was
undisturbed. I rushed to the chair in which he sat....

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...mansion, I fled aghast. The storm
was still abroad in all its wrath as I...

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...them
believe that I have been, in some measure, the slave of circumstances
beyond human control. ...

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...rambling details. These, moreover, utterly
trivial, and even ridiculous in themselves, assume to my fancy
adventitious importance,...

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...how
veritably a palace of enchantment! There was really no end to its
windings--to its incomprehensible subdivisions....

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...in mature age any definite
impression. All is gray shadow--a weak and irregular remembrance--an
indistinct regathering of...

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...his resistance, and
especially his impertinent and dogged interference with my purposes,
were not more pointed than...

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...the anomalous state of affairs existing between us
which turned all my attacks upon him (and...

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...any allusion to a
similarity of mind, person, or condition existing between us. But, in
truth, I...

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...when the
suggestions of my rival were on the side of those errors or follies so
usual...

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...occupied by Wilson.

One night, about the close of my fifth year at the school, and
immediately...

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...which I
remembered them. The truth--the tragedy--of the drama was no more. I
could now find room...

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...his face I could not distinguish. Upon
my entering, he strode hurriedly up to me, and,...

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...here, so utterly
fallen from the gentlemanly estate as to seek acquaintance with the
vilest arts of...

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...or played, with a wild nervousness
of manner for which his intoxication, I thought, might partially...

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...to perceive that a stranger had entered, about my own height, and
closely muffled in a...

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..."I presume it is supererogatory to seek
here" (eying the folds of the garment with a...

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...he?--whence came he?--and what are his
objects?" But no answer was there found. And now I...

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...inspiration of
a burning hope, and at length nurtured in my secret thoughts a stern
and desperate...

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...then immediately returned to my dying
antagonist. But what human language can adequately portray _that_
astonishment, _that_...

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...up
body and soul. You suppose me a _very_ old man--but I am not. It took
less...

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...it its white and ghastly crest,
howling and shrieking forever. Just opposite the promontory upon whose
apex...

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...suddenly into frenzied convulsion--heaving, boiling,
hissing--gyrating in gigantic and innumerable vortices, and all
whirling and plunging on...

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...not to afford a convenient
passage for a vessel, without the risk of splitting on the...

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...into the abyss of the whirl which may be
had from the highest crag of Helseggen....

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...Vurrgh. In all violent
eddies at sea there is good fishing, at proper opportunities, if one
has...

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...without accident; although at times my heart has
been in my mouth when we happened to...

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...us off fell away, and we
were dead becalmed, drifting about in every direction. This state...

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...moment all this joy was
turned into horror--for he put his mouth close to my ear,...

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...at its face by the moonlight, and then burst into
tears as I flung it far...

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...we had left. It stood like a
huge writhing wall between us and the horizon.

"It may...

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...which had been securely lashed
under the coop of the counter, and was the only thing...

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...accurately. The
general burst of terrific grandeur was all that I beheld. When I
recovered myself a...

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..._amusement_ in speculating upon the relative velocities
of their several descents toward the foam below. 'This...

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...consequence of the forms of the floating
fragments, and showed me how it happened that a...

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...change took place in the
character of the whirlpool. The slope of the sides of the...

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...and lofty wall girdled it in. This wall had gates of
iron. The courtiers, having entered,...

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...were scarlet--a deep blood-color. Now in no one of the
seven apartments was there any lamp...

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..._decora_ of mere fashion. His plans were
bold and fiery, and his conceptions glowed with barbaric...

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...before. But now there were twelve strokes to be sounded by the bell
of the clock;...

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...to hang at sunrise, from the
battlements!"

It was in the eastern or blue chamber in which...

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...in the despairing
posture of his fall. And the life of the ebony clock went out...

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...gunning and fishing, or sauntering along the beach and
through the myrtles in quest of shells...

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...met
Lieutenant G----, from the fort, and, very foolishly, I lent him the
bug; so it will...

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...and the longer one at the bottom like a mouth--and then
the shape of the whole...

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...He now grew more composed in
his demeanor; but his original air of enthusiasm had quite
disappeared....

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...very
well stand it--but can you form no idea of what has occasioned this
illness, or rather...

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...the hills on the mainland. I verily believe that
my ill looks alone saved me a...

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...know that Jupiter is quite right about it?"

"In what way?" I asked, with a sad...

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...shall need the
aid of some person in whom we can confide. You are the only...

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...northwesterly direction, through a tract of country
excessively wild and desolate, where no trace of a...

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...take it up with you in some way, I shall be
under the necessity of breaking...

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...with lunacy, and I became seriously anxious
about getting him home. While I was pondering upon...

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...the left eye of the skull."

"Hum! hoo! dat 's good! why, dar ain't no eye...

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...about digging as quickly as
possible.

To speak the truth, I had no especial relish for such...

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...a depth of five
feet, and yet no signs of any treasure became manifest. A general
pause...

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...saw, or fancied that I saw,
certain indications of method, removed the peg which marked the...

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...hardness, had plainly been subjected to some mineralizing
process--perhaps that of the bichloride of mercury. This...

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...the hut in safety, but after excessive toil, at one
o'clock in the morning. Worn out...

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...a prodigious golden punch-bowl,
ornamented with richly chased vine-leaves and Bacchanalian figures;
with two sword-handles exquisitely embossed,...

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...certain similarity in general outline. Presently I took a
candle and, seating myself at the...

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...upon the scrap of parchment, which I then supposed to
be paper. It was lying half-buried...

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...be
seen that the original form was oblong. It was just such a slip,
indeed, as might...

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...sometimes employed; a green tint results. The
regulus of cobalt, dissolved in spirit of nitre, gives...

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...occurred on the _sole_ day of all the year in which
it has been, or may...

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...suffered it to
remain another minute. Upon taking it off, the whole was just as you
see...

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...should have commenced with a collation and analysis of the shorter
words, and, had a word...

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... ] ...

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...letter adapted to the vacancy,
we perceive that no word can be formed of which this...

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... " t

"We have, therefore, no less than ten of...

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...word
'hostel.' Gaining no information on the subject, I was on the point of
extending my sphere...

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...position. This fact
confirmed my preconceived idea. I proceeded to use the glass. Of
course, the...

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...early, I contrived to give
him the slip, and went into the hills in search of...

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...no more able to answer than yourself. There
seems, however, only one plausible way of...

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...that was beyond his comprehension,
and thus lived amid an absolute legion of "oddities."

"Very true," said...

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...the cant of diplomacy.

"Still I do not quite understand," said Dupin.

"No? well; the disclosure...

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...I suppose, be desired, or even imagined."

"You flatter me," replied the Prefect; "but it is...

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...his person rigorously searched under my own inspection."

"You might have spared yourself this trouble," said...

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...the aid of a most powerful microscope. Had there been
any traces of recent disturbance we...

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...read aloud a minute account of the internal, and
especially of the external appearance of the...

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...minutes he remained speechless and motionless, looking
incredulously at my friend with open mouth, and eyes...

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...this lay in
mere observation and admeasurement of the astuteness of his
opponents. For example, an arrant...

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...is a faithful representative of that of _the mass_: but
when the cunning of the individual...

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...fools."

"But is this really the poet?" I asked. "There are two brothers, I
know; and both...

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...only truths within the limits of _relation_. But the mathematician
argues, from his _finite truths_, through...

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...lead him
to despise all the ordinary _nooks_ of concealment. _He_ could not, I
reflected, be...

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...But this is a point, it appears, somewhat above or
beneath the understanding of the Prefect....

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...it to be
that of which I was in search. To be sure, it was, to...

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...took the letter, put it in my pocket, and replaced it
by a facsimile (so far...

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...quite good-humoredly, that I should
remember. So, as I knew he would feel some curiosity in...

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...this poem appeared in editions of 1831 and
1845, and in magazines. It is a sonnet,...

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...constellation
Taurus; only six stars of the group are readily visible, but legend
tells of a seventh,...

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...famous students of the heavens and
practiced fortune telling by the stars; during the Middle Ages
astrologers...

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...of the death there of the "maiden
that is no more."

1. fairest of all flowers. There...

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...the numerous alliterations.

34. thereat is. Was the idea phrased this way for any other
purpose than...

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...medical training and probably saved Poe's life. This brief
poem is instinct with a gratitude and...

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...Anna Lewis, a verse writer of the day,
whom Poe admired.


TO HELEN (Page 35)

Published in November,...

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...most remarkable poems, as well as one of the most popular. A
very interesting account of...

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...pages xxiii-xxiv).

59. 24. Porphyrogene: from Greek words meaning "purple"
and "begotten," hence, born in the purple,...

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...wrote
popular essays on that subject. James Gates Percival (1795-1856) was
an American poet, musician, linguist, surgeon,...

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...invented to fit
the text, as they do perfectly.

69. 24-25. It was the work of the...

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...well described by the Nubian geographer,
Ptolemy Hephestion." Apparently he refers to Claudius Ptolemy, a
celebrated philosopher...

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...record of such a disease in medical history.

113. 3. avatar: a word from Hindoo mythology,...

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...phrases.

128. 22. empressement: French for "eagerness," cordiality.

132. 31. Liriodendron Tulipifera: the scientific name for...

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...a term
in logic for a form of fallacious reasoning. Consult an encyclopedia,
articles on "Logic," "Syllogism,"...