The Works of Edgar Allan Poe — Volume 2

By Edgar Allan Poe

Page 62

region was merely a mass
of purulent tubercles, running one into another. Several extensive
perforations existed; and, at one point, permanent adhesion to the
ribs had taken place. These appearances in the right lobe were of
comparatively recent date. The ossification had proceeded with very
unusual rapidity; no sign of it had been discovered a month before, and
the adhesion had only been observed during the three previous days.
Independently of the phthisis, the patient was suspected of aneurism
of the aorta; but on this point the osseous symptoms rendered an exact
diagnosis impossible. It was the opinion of both physicians that M.
Valdemar would die about midnight on the morrow (Sunday). It was then
seven o'clock on Saturday evening.

On quitting the invalid's bed-side to hold conversation with myself,
Doctors D---- and F---- had bidden him a final farewell. It had not been their
intention to return; but, at my request, they agreed to look in upon the
patient about ten the next night.

When they had gone, I spoke freely with M. Valdemar on the subject
of his approaching dissolution, as well as, more particularly, of the
experiment proposed. He still professed himself quite willing and even
anxious to have it made, and urged me to commence it at once. A male and
a female nurse were in attendance; but I did not feel myself altogether
at liberty to engage in a task of this character with no more reliable
witnesses than these people, in case of sudden accident, might prove.
I therefore postponed operations until about eight the next night, when
the arrival of a medical student with whom I had some acquaintance, (Mr.
Theodore L--l,) relieved me from farther embarrassment. It had been my
design, originally, to wait for the physicians; but I was induced to
proceed, first, by the urgent entreaties of M. Valdemar, and secondly,
by my conviction that I had not a moment to lose, as he was evidently
sinking fast.

Mr. L--l was so kind as to accede to my desire that he would take notes
of all that occurred, and it is from his memoranda that what I now have
to relate is, for the most part, either condensed or copied verbatim.

It wanted about five minutes of eight when, taking the patient's hand, I
begged him to state, as distinctly as he could, to Mr. L--l, whether he
(M. Valdemar) was entirely willing that I should make the experiment of
mesmerizing him in his then condition.

He replied feebly, yet quite audibly, "Yes, I wish to be. I fear you
have mesmerized"--adding immediately afterwards, "deferred it too long."


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Text Comparison with The Works of Edgar Allan Poe — Volume 2

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Page 51
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Page 72
Whenever I sat, it would crouch beneath my chair, or spring upon my knees, covering me with its loathsome caresses.
Page 73
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_ LET me call myself, for the present, William Wilson.
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From the dim regions beyond the mountains at the upper end of our encircled domain, there crept out a narrow and deep river, brighter than all save the eyes of Eleonora; and, winding stealthily about in mazy courses, it passed away, at length, through a shadowy gorge, among hills still dimmer than those whence it had issued.
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