The Works of Edgar Allan Poe — Volume 3

By Edgar Allan Poe

Page 207

see him at once, and procure a carriage. The soiree would
scarcely break up before two; and by this hour the vehicle was to be
at the door, when, in the confusion occasioned by the departure of the
company, Madame L. could easily enter it unobserved. We were then to
call at the house of a clergyman who would be in waiting; there be
married, drop Talbot, and proceed on a short tour to the East, leaving
the fashionable world at home to make whatever comments upon the matter
it thought best.

Having planned all this, I immediately took leave, and went in search of
Talbot, but, on the way, I could not refrain from stepping into a hotel,
for the purpose of inspecting the miniature; and this I did by the
powerful aid of the glasses. The countenance was a surpassingly
beautiful one! Those large luminous eyes!--that proud Grecian
nose!--those dark luxuriant curls!--“Ah!” said I, exultingly to myself,
“this is indeed the speaking image of my beloved!” I turned the reverse,
and discovered the words--“Eugenie Lalande--aged twenty-seven years and
seven months.”

I found Talbot at home, and proceeded at once to acquaint him with
my good fortune. He professed excessive astonishment, of course, but
congratulated me most cordially, and proffered every assistance in his
power. In a word, we carried out our arrangement to the letter, and, at
two in the morning, just ten minutes after the ceremony, I found myself
in a close carriage with Madame Lalande--with Mrs. Simpson, I should
say--and driving at a great rate out of town, in a direction Northeast
by North, half-North.

It had been determined for us by Talbot, that, as we were to be up all
night, we should make our first stop at C--, a village about twenty
miles from the city, and there get an early breakfast and some repose,
before proceeding upon our route. At four precisely, therefore, the
carriage drew up at the door of the principal inn. I handed my adored
wife out, and ordered breakfast forthwith. In the meantime we were shown
into a small parlor, and sat down.

It was now nearly if not altogether daylight; and, as I gazed,
enraptured, at the angel by my side, the singular idea came, all at
once, into my head, that this was really the very first moment since my
acquaintance with the celebrated loveliness of Madame Lalande, that I
had enjoyed a near inspection of that loveliness by daylight at all.

“And now, mon ami,” said she, taking my hand, and so interrupting this
train of reflection, “and now, mon cher ami, since we

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Text Comparison with The Raven and The Philosophy of Composition

Page 0
The Raven and The Philosophy of Composition [Illustration] [Illustration: _Copyright 1906 by The Harwell-Evans Co.
Page 1
If they be again correct, Poe’s genius as seen in the creation of “The Philosophy of Composition” is far more startling than it has otherwise appeared; and “robbed of his bay leaves in the realm of poetry,” he is to be “crowned with a double wreath of berried holly for his prose.
Page 2
Nothing is more clear than that every plot, worth the name, must be elaborated to its dénouement before anything be attempted with the pen.
Page 3
We commence, then, with this intention.
Page 4
When, indeed, men speak of Beauty, they mean, precisely, not a quality, as is supposed, but an effect; they refer, in short, just to that intense and pure elevation of soul—not of intellect, or of heart—upon which I have commented, and.
Page 5
As commonly used, the refrain, or burden, not only is limited to lyric verse, but depends for its impression upon the force of monotone—both in sound and thought.
Page 6
I resolved to diversify, and so heighten, the effect, by adhering, in general, to the monotone of sound, while I continually varied that of thought: that is to say, I determined to produce continuously novel effects, by the variation of the application of the refrain—the refrain itself remaining, for the most part, unvaried.
Page 7
Perceiving the opportunity thus afforded me—or, more strictly, thus forced upon me in the progress of the construction—I first established in mind the climax, or concluding query—that query to which “Nevermore” should be in the last place an answer—that in reply to which this word “Nevermore” should involve.
Page 8
In general, to be found, it must be elaborately sought, and although a positive merit of the highest class, demands in its attainment less of invention than negation.
Page 9
I made the night tempestuous, first, to account for the Raven’s seeking admission, and, secondly, for the effect of contrast with the (physical) serenity within the chamber.
Page 10
In the two stanzas which follow, the design is more obviously carried out: Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling.
Page 11
storm, to seek admission at a window from which a light still gleams,—the chamber-window of a student, occupied half in poring over a volume, half in dreaming of a beloved mistress deceased.
Page 12
[Illustration: _Copyright 1906 by The Harwell-Evans Co.
Page 13
[Illustration] Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling, By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore, “Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou,” I said, “art sure no craven, Ghastly grim and ancient Raven wandering from the Nightly shore— Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night’s Plutonian shore!” Quoth the Raven, “Nevermore.
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” [Illustration: _Copyright 1906 by The Harwell-Evans Co.
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Nash.