The Works of Edgar Allan Poe — Volume 3

By Edgar Allan Poe

Page 1

I had seen
and undergone, and trust to the shrewdness and common-sense of the
public--insisting, with great plausibility, that however roughly, as
regards mere authorship, my book should be got up, its very uncouthness,
if there were any, would give it all the better chance of being received
as truth.

Notwithstanding this representation, I did not make up my mind to do as
he suggested. He afterward proposed (finding that I would not stir in
the matter) that I should allow him to draw up, in his own words, a
narrative of the earlier portion of my adventures, from facts afforded
by myself, publishing it in the “Southern Messenger” _under the garb
of fiction. _To this, perceiving no objection, I consented, stipulating
only that my real name should be retained. Two numbers of the pretended
fiction appeared, consequently, in the “Messenger” for January and
February (1837), and, in order that it might certainly be regarded as
fiction, the name of Mr. Poe was affixed to the articles in the table of
contents of the magazine.

The manner in which this ruse was received has induced me at length to
undertake a regular compilation and publication of the adventures in
question; for I found that, in spite of the air of fable which had been
so ingeniously thrown around that portion of my statement which appeared
in the “Messenger” (without altering or distorting a single fact),
the public were still not at all disposed to receive it as fable, and
several letters were sent to Mr. P.’s address, distinctly expressing
a conviction to the contrary. I thence concluded that the facts of my
narrative would prove of such a nature as to carry with them sufficient
evidence of their own authenticity, and that I had consequently little
to fear on the score of popular incredulity.

This_ exposé _being made, it will be seen at once how much of what
follows I claim to be my own writing; and it will also be understood
that no fact is misrepresented in the first few pages which were written
by Mr. Poe. Even to those readers who have not seen the “Messenger,”
it will be unnecessary to point out where his portion ends and my own
commences; the difference in point of style will be readily perceived.

A. G. PYM.




CHAPTER 1

MY name is Arthur Gordon Pym. My father was a respectable trader in
sea-stores at Nantucket, where I was born. My maternal grandfather was
an attorney in good practice. He

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Text Comparison with Selections from Poe

Page 8
One of his biographers tells of bread soaked in gin being fed to the little Poe children by an old nurse during the illness of their mother; and there is another story, already mentioned, of the little Edgar, in his adoptive home, taught to pledge the guests as a social grace.
Page 11
It is the most elaborate treatment of Poe's favorite theme, the death of a beautiful woman.
Page 17
Be silent in that solitude, .
Page 19
TO SCIENCE A PROLOGUE TO "AL AARAAF" Science! true daughter of Old Time thou art, Who alterest all things with thy peering eyes.
Page 34
Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing, 25 Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortals ever dared to dream before; But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token, And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, "Lenore?" This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, "Lenore:" Merely this and nothing more.
Page 37
TO M.
Page 40
60 I replied--"This is nothing but dreaming: Let us on by this tremulous light! Let us bathe in this crystalline light! Its sibyllic splendor is beaming With hope and in beauty to-night: 65 See, it flickers up the sky through the night! Ah, we safely may trust to its gleaming, And be sure it will lead us aright: We safely may trust to a gleaming That cannot but guide us aright, 70 Since it flickers up to Heaven through the night.
Page 52
Béranger During the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless day in the autumn of the year, when the clouds hung oppressively low in the heavens, I had been passing alone, on horseback, through a singularly dreary tract of country; and at length found myself, as the shades of the evening drew on, within view of the melancholy House of Usher.
Page 65
wild overstrained air of vivacity with which he hearkened, or apparently hearkened, to the words of the tale, I might well have congratulated myself upon the success of my design.
Page 76
Bransby had also fitted up as dormitories; although, being the merest closets, they were capable of accommodating but a single individual.
Page 91
"--These are the words of the "Encyclopædia Britannica.
Page 96
The boat did not seem to sink into the water at all, but to skim like an air-bubble upon the surface of the surge.
Page 99
The general burst of terrific grandeur was all that I beheld.
Page 118
"Keep up the largest branch,--the one on this side," said Legrand.
Page 121
We dug very steadily for two hours.
Page 127
Presently I took a candle and, seating myself at the other end of the room, proceeded to scrutinize the parchment more closely.
Page 139
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.
Page 149
This functionary, however, has been thoroughly mystified; and the remote source of his defeat lies in the supposition that the Minister is a fool, because he has acquired renown as a poet.
Page 156
Cf.
Page 163
Anna Lewis, a verse writer of the day, whom Poe admired.