Edgar Allan Poe

(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849 / Boston)

Edgar Allan Poe Quotes

  • ''If in many of my productions terror has been the thesis, I maintain that terror is not of Germany, but of the soul.''
    Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849), U.S. author. Preface to the Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque (1840). Poe's most passionate and credible defense of his short stories' authenticity and originality.
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  • ''As a viewed myself in a fragment of looking-glass..., I was so impressed with a sense of vague awe at my appearance ... that I was seized with a violent tremour.''
    Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849), U.S. author. Pym, the narrator, in The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym, ch. 8, Harper and Brothers (1838). Unnerving encounters with an alienating self.
  • ''He made no resistance whatever, and was stabbed in the back.... I must not dwell upon the fearful repast.... Words have no power to impress the mind with the exquisite horror of their reality.''
    Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849), U.S. author. Pym, the narrator, in The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym, ch. 8, Harper and Brothers (1838). The aesthetic of horror.
  • ''I have no faith in human perfectability. I think that human exertion will have no appreciable effect upon humanity. Man is now only more active—not more happy—nor more wise, than he was 6000 years ago.''
    Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1845), U.S. poet, critic, short-story writer. Letter, July 2, 1844, to poet and critic James Russell Lowell. quoted in Julian Symons, The Tell-Tale Heart: The Life and Works of Edgar Allan Poe, pt. 1, ch. 11 (1978).
  • ''Man's real life is happy, chiefly because he is ever expecting that it soon will be so.''
    Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1845), U.S. poet, critic, short-story writer. repr. In The Centenary Poe, ed. Montagu Slater (1949). "Re-Living the Old Life," Marginalia (1844-1849).
  • ''Barnaby, the idiot, is the murderer's own son.''
    Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849), U.S. author. Review of Charles Dickens' Barnaby Rudge, Saturday Evening Post (1841). Solving the whodunit.
  • ''The unity of effect or impression is a point of the greatest importance. It is clear, moreover, that this unity cannot be thoroughly preserved in productions whose perusal cannot be completed at one sitting.''
    Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849), U.S. author. Review of Nathaniel Hawthorne, Twice-Told Tales, Graham's Magazine (1842). Poe's famous dictum on literary composition.

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Best Poem of Edgar Allan Poe

Annabel Lee

It was many and many a year ago,
In a kingdom by the sea,
That a maiden there lived whom you may know
By the name of ANNABEL LEE;
And this maiden she lived with no other thought
Than to love and be loved by me.

I was a child and she was a child,
In this kingdom by the sea;
But we loved with a love that was more than love-
I and my Annabel Lee;
With a love that the winged seraphs of heaven
Coveted her and me.

And this was the reason that, long ago,
In ...

Read the full of Annabel Lee

To Helen - 1848

I saw thee once- once only- years ago:
I must not say how many- but not many.
It was a July midnight; and from out
A full-orbed moon, that, like thine own soul, soaring,
Sought a precipitate pathway up through heaven,
There fell a silvery-silken veil of light,
With quietude, and sultriness, and slumber,
Upon the upturned faces of a thousand
Roses that grew in an enchanted garden,

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