The Works of Edgar Allan Poe — Volume 1

By Edgar Allan Poe

Page 101

feet, would indicate a definite
point--and beneath this point I thought it at least possible that a
deposit of value lay concealed."

"All this," I said, "is exceedingly clear, and, although ingenious,
still simple and explicit. When you left the Bishop's Hotel, what then?"

"Why, having carefully taken the bearings of the tree, I turned
homewards. The instant that I left 'the devil's seat,' however, the
circular rift vanished; nor could I get a glimpse of it afterwards, turn
as I would. What seems to me the chief ingenuity in this whole business,
is the fact (for repeated experiment has convinced me it is a fact) that
the circular opening in question is visible from no other attainable
point of view than that afforded by the narrow ledge upon the face of
the rock.

"In this expedition to the 'Bishop's Hotel' I had been attended
by Jupiter, who had, no doubt, observed, for some weeks past, the
abstraction of my demeanor, and took especial care not to leave me
alone. But, on the next day, getting up very early, I contrived to give
him the slip, and went into the hills in search of the tree. After much
toil I found it. When I came home at night my valet proposed to give
me a flogging. With the rest of the adventure I believe you are as well
acquainted as myself."

"I suppose," said I, "you missed the spot, in the first attempt at
digging, through Jupiter's stupidity in letting the bug fall through the
right instead of through the left eye of the skull."

"Precisely. This mistake made a difference of about two inches and a
half in the 'shot'--that is to say, in the position of the peg nearest
the tree; and had the treasure been beneath the 'shot,' the error would
have been of little moment; but 'the shot,' together with the nearest
point of the tree, were merely two points for the establishment of
a line of direction; of course the error, however trivial in the
beginning, increased as we proceeded with the line, and by the time
we had gone fifty feet, threw us quite off the scent. But for my
deep-seated impressions that treasure was here somewhere actually
buried, we might have had all our labor in vain."

"But your grandiloquence, and your conduct in swinging the beetle--how
excessively odd! I was sure you were mad. And why did you insist upon
letting fall the bug, instead of a bullet, from the skull?"

"Why, to be frank, I felt somewhat annoyed by your evident suspicions
touching my sanity, and so resolved to

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Text Comparison with First Project Gutenberg Collection of Edgar Allan Poe

Page 0
" Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December, And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Page 1
Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning, Soon again I heard a tapping something louder than before.
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obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he, But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door-- Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door-- Perched, and sat, and nothing more.
Page 3
'" But the Raven still beguiling all my sad soul into smiling, Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird and bust and door; Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore-- What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt, and ominous bird of yore Meant in croaking "Nevermore.
Page 4
" "Prophet!" said I, "thing of evil!--prophet still, if bird or devil! By that Heaven that bends above us--by that God we both adore-- Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn, It shall clasp a sainted maiden whom the angels name Lenore-- Clasp a rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore.
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The external world could take care of itself.
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But in the corridors that followed the suite, there stood, opposite to each window, a heavy tripod, bearing a brazier of fire, that projected its rays through the tinted glass and so glaringly illumined the room.
Page 7
But when the echoes had fully ceased, a light laughter at once pervaded the assembly; the musicians looked at each other and smiled as if at their own nervousness and folly, and made whispering vows, each to the other, that the next chiming of the clock should produce in them no similar emotion; and then, after the lapse of sixty minutes, (which embrace three thousand and six hundred seconds of the Time that flies,) there came yet another chiming of the clock, and then were the same disconcert and tremulousness and meditation as before.
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And now again the music swells, and the dreams live, and writhe to and fro more merrily than ever, taking hue from the many tinted windows through which stream the rays from the tripods.
Page 9
When the eyes of the Prince Prospero fell upon this spectral image (which, with a slow and solemn movement, as if more fully to sustain its role, stalked to and fro among the waltzers) he was seen to be convulsed, in the first moment with a strong shudder either of terror or distaste; but, in the next, his brow reddened with rage.
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You, who so well know the nature of my soul, will not suppose, however, that I gave utterance to a threat.
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" "My friend, no; I will not impose upon your good nature.
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"The pipe," said he.
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His eyes flashed with a fierce light.
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It was _not_ the cry of a drunken man.
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I again paused, and holding the flambeaux over the mason-work, threw a few feeble rays upon the figure within.
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_In pace requiescat!_.