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This Edition of the Complete Works of
Edgar Allan Poe is limited to Ten Hundred
and Fifty Signed and Numbered Sets, of
which this is




fee Devil in the Belfry.


P9E *

Edited and Chronologically Arranged on the Basis

of the Standard Text, with Certain Additional





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Narrative of A. Gordon Pym (Continued} .


How to Write a Blackwood Article

A Predicament

Silence : A Fable . ....
The Devil in the Belfry ....
The Man That Was Used Up ...
The Fall of the House of Usher .
William Wilson .


. 218

. 250
. 2 5 6
. 270
. 287





The Devil in the Belfry .... Frontispiece

" Beating the devil's tattoo up in the belfry of the
steeple of Vondervotteimittiss."

A. Gordon Pym 40

" On his back there sat a huge sea-gull busily
gorging itself with the horrible flesh."

Ligeia 192

" Man doth not yield him to the angels, nor unto
death utterly, save only through the weakness of his
feeble will."

A Predicament 244

" Meantime the ponderous and terrific Scythe of
Time had not stopped, nor was it likely to stop, in
its career. Down and still down, it came."

Silence 252

" I hid myself among the water-lilies that I might
discover the actions of the man."

The Fall of the House of Usher . . . 306

" We . . . made our way, with toil, into
the scarcely less gloomy apartments of the upper
portion of the house."


Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

(Continued from Volume II.)

|ULY ioth. Spoke a brig from Rio, bound to
Norfolk. Weather hazy, with a light baffling
wind from the eastward. To-day Hartman
Rogers died, having been attacked on the eighth with
spasms after drinking a glass of grog. This man was of
the cook's party, and one upon whom Peters placed his
main reliance. He told Augustus that he believed the
mate had poisoned him, and that he expected, if he did
not be on the lookout, his own turn would come shortly.
There were now only himself, Jones, and the cook be
longing to his own gang ; on the other side there were
five. He had spoken to Jones about taking the com
mand from the mate ; but the project having been coolly
received, he had been deterred from pressing the matter
any further or from saying anything to the cook. It
was well, as it happened, that he was so prudent, for hi
the afternoon the cook expressed his determination of


Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

siding with the mate and went over formally to that
party; while Jones took an opportunity of quarrelling
with Peters, and hinted that he would let the mate
know of the plan in agitation. There was now, evi
dently, no time to be lost, and Peters expressed his
determination of attempting to take the vessel at all
hazards, provided Augustus would lend him his aid.
My friend at once assured him of his willingness to
enter into any plan for that purpose, and, thinking the
opportunity a favorable one, made known the fact of
my being on board. At this the hybrid was not more
astonished than delighted, as he had no reliance what
ever upon Jones, whom he already considered as be
longing to the party of the mate. They went below
immediately, when Augustus called to me by name,
and Peters and myself were soon made acquainted. It
was agreed that we should attempt to retake the vessel
upon the first good opportunity, leaving Jones alto
gether out of our councils. In the event of success we
were to run the brig into the first port that offered and
deliver her up. The desertion of his party had frus
trated Peters's design of going into the Pacific, an ad
venture which could not be accomplished without a
crew, and he depended upon either getting acquitted
upon trial on the score of insanity (which he solemnly
averred had actuated him in lending his aid to the
mutiny), or upon obtaining a pardon, if found guilty,
through the representations of Augustus and myself.

Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

Our deliberations were interrupted for the present by
the cry of, " All hands take in sail," and Peters and
Augustus ran up on deck.

As usual, the crew were nearly all drunk; and,
before sail could be properly taken in, a violent squall
laid the brig on her beam-ends. By keeping her away,
however, she righted, having shipped a good deal of
water. Scarcely was everything secure, when another
squall took the vessel and immediately afterward an
other, no damage being done. There was every ap
pearance of a gale of wind, which, indeed, shortly came
on with great fury from the northward and westward.
All was made as snug as possible and we laid to, as
usual, under a close-reefed foresail. As night drew
on, the wind increased in violence, with a remarkably
heavy sea. Peters now came into the forecastle with
Augustus, and we resumed our deliberations.

We agreed that no opportunity could be more favor
able than the present for carrying our design into effect,
as an attempt at such a moment would never be antici
pated. As the brig was snugly laid to, there would be
no necessity of manoeuvring her until good weather,
when, if we succeeded in our attempt, we might libe
rate one, or perhaps two of the men, to aid us in tak
ing her into port. The main difficulty was the great
disproportion in our forces. There were only three of
us, and in the cabin there were nine. All the arms on
board, too, were in their possession, with the exception


Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

of a pair of small pistols which Peters had concealed
about his person and the large seaman's knife which
he always wore in the waistband of his pantaloons.
From certain indications, too, such, for example, as
there being no such thing as an axe or a handspike
lying in their customary places, we began to fear that
the mate had his suspicions, at least in regard to Peters,
and that he would let slip no opportunity of getting rid
of him. It was clear, indeed, that what we should
determine to do could not be done too soon. Still the
odds were too much against us to allow of our proceed
ing without the greatest caution.

Peters proposed that he should go up on deck and
enter into conversation with the watch (Allen), when
he would be able to throw him into the sea without
trouble and without making any disturbance, by seiz
ing a good opportunity; that Augustus and myself
should then come up and endeavor to provide ourselves
with some kind of weapons from the deck; and that
we should then make a rush together and secure the
companion-way before any opposition could be offered.
I objected to this, because I could not believe that the
mate (who was a cunning fellow in all matters which
did not affect his superstitious prejudices) would suffer
himself to be so easily entrapped. The very fact of
there being a watch on deck at all was sufficient proof
that he was upon the alert, it not being usual, except
in vessels where discipline is most rigidly enforced, to


Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

station a watch on deck when a vessel is lying to in a
gale of wind. As I address myself principally, if not
altogether, to persons who have never been to sea, it
may be as well to state the exact condition of a vessel
under such circumstances. Lying to, or, in sea-par
lance, " laying to," is a measure resorted to for various
purposes and effected in various manners. In mod
erate weather it is frequently done with a view of
merely bringing the vessel to a stand-still, to wait for
another vessel, or any similar object. If the vessel
which lies to is under full sail, the manoeuvre is usu
ally accomplished by throwing round some portion of
her sails so as to let the wind take them aback, when
she becomes stationary. But we are now speaking of
lying to in a gale of wind. This is done when the
wind is ahead and too violent to admit of carrying sail
without danger of capsizing ; and sometimes even when
the wind is fair, but the sea too heavy for the vessel to
be put before it. If a vessel be suffered to scud before
the wind in a very heavy sea, much damage is usually
done her by the shipping of water over her stern, and
sometimes by the violent plunges she makes forward.
This manoeuvre, then, is seldom resorted to in such
case, unless through necessity. When the vessel is in
a leaky condition she is often put before the wind even
in the heaviest seas ; for, when lying to, her seams are
sure to be greatly opened by her violent straining, and
it is not so much the case when scudding. Often, too,


Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

it becomes necessary to scud a vessel, either when the
blast is so exceedingly furious as to tear in pieces the
sail which is employed with a view of bringing her
head to the wind, or when, through the false modelling
of the frame or other causes, this main object cannot
be effected.

Vessels in a gale of wind are laid to in different man
ners, according to their peculiar construction. Some
lie to best under a foresail, and this, I believe, is the
sail most usually employed. Large square-rigged ves
sels have sails for the express purpose, called storm-
staysails. But the jib is occasionally employed by
itself; sometimes the jib and foresail, or a double-
reefed foresail, and not unfrequently the aftersails,
are made use of. Foretopsails are very often found to
answer the purpose better than any other species of
sail. The Grampus was generally laid to under a
close-reefed foresail.

When a vessel is to be laid to, her head is brought
up to the wind just so nearly as to fill the sail under
which she lies when hauled flat aft, that is, when
brought diagonally across the vessel. This being done,
the bows point within a few degrees of the direction
from which the wind issues, and the windward bow of
course receives the shock of the waves. In this situa
tion a good vessel will ride out a very heavy gale of
wind without shipping a drop of water, and without
any further attention being requisite on the part of the


Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

crew. The helm is usually lashed down, but this is
altogether unnecessary (except on account of the noise
it makes when loose), for the rudder has no effect upon
the vessel when lying to. Indeed, the helm had far
better be left loose than lashed very fast, for the rudder
is apt to be torn off by heavy seas if there be no room
for the helm to play. As long as the sail holds, a well-
modelled vessel will maintain her situation and ride
every sea, as if instinct with life and reason. If the
violence of the wind, however, should tear the sail into
pieces (a feat which it requires a perfect hurricane to
accomplish under ordinary circumstances), there is
then imminent danger. The vessel falls off from the
wind, and, coming broadside to the sea, is completely
at its mercy; the only resource in this case is to put
her quietly before the wind, letting her scud until some
other sail can be set. Some vessels will lie to under
no sail whatever, but such are not to be trusted at sea.
But to return from this digression. It had never
been customary with the mate to have any watch on
deck when lying to in a gale of wind, and the fact that
he had now one, coupled with the circumstance of the
missing axes and handspikes, fully convinced us that
the crew were too well on the watch to be taken by
surprise in the manner Peters had suggested. Some
thing, however, was to be done, and that with as little
delay as practicable, for there could be no doubt that a
suspicion having been once entertained against Peters,


Narrative of A. Gordon Pyrn

he would be sacrificed upon the earliest occasion, and
one would certainly be either found or made upon the
breaking of the gale.

Augustus now suggested that if Peters could con
trive to remove, under any pretext, the piece of chain-
cable which lay over the trap in the stateroom, we
might possibly be able to come upon them unawares
by means of the hold ; but a little reflection convinced
us that the vessel rolled and pitched too violently for
any attempt of that nature.

By good fortune I at length hit upon the idea of
working upon the superstitious terrors and guilty con
science of the mate. It will be remembered that one
of the crew, Hartman Rogers, had died during the
morning, having been attacked two days before with
spasms after drinking some spirits and water. Peters
bad expressed to us his opinion that this man had been
poisoned by the mate, and for this belief he had reasons,
so he said, which were incontrovertible, but which he
could not be prevailed upon to explain to us, this way
ward refusal being only in keeping with other points of
his singular character. But whether or not he had
any better grounds for suspecting the mate than we had
ourselves, we were easily led to fall in with his sus
picion, and determined to act accordingly.

Rogers had died about eleven in the forenoon, in
violent convulsions ; and the corpse presented in a few
minutes after death one of the most horrid and loath-


Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

some spectacles I ever remember to have seen. The
stomach was swollen immensely, like that of a man
who has been drowned and lain under water for many
weeks. The hands were in the same condition, while
the face was shrunken, shrivelled, and of a chalky
whiteness, except where relieved by two or three glar
ing red splotches, like those occasioned by erysipelas ;
one of the splotches extended diagonally across the
face, completely covering up an eye as if with a band
of red velvet. In this disgusting condition the body
had been brought up from the cabin at noon to be
thrown overboard, when the mate getting a glimpse of
it (for he now saw it for the first time), and being either
touched with remorse for his crime or struck with
terror at so horrible a sight, ordered the men to sew
the body up in its hammock, and allow it the usual rites
of sea-burial. Having given these directions, he went
below, as if to avoid any further sight of his victim.
While preparations were making to obey his orders, the
gale came on with great fury, and the design was aban
doned for the present. The corpse, left to itself, was
washed into the larboard scuppers, where it still lay at
the time of which I speak, floundering about with the
furious lurches of the brig.

Having arranged our plan, we set about putting it in
execution as speedily as possible. Peters went upon
deck, and, as he had anticipated, was immediately
accosted by Allen, who appeared to be stationed more


Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

as a watch upon the forecastle than for any other pur
pose. The fate of this villain, however, was speedily
and silently decided ; for Peters, approaching him in a
careless manner, as if about to address him, seized him
by the throat, and, before he could utter a single cry,
tossed him over the bulwarks. He then called to us,
and we came up. Our first precaution was to look
about for something with which to arm ourselves, and
in doing this we had to proceed with great care, for it
was impossible to stand on deck an instant without
holding fast, and violent seas broke over the vessel at
every plunge forward. It was indispensable, too, that
we should be quick in our operations, for every minute
we expected the mate to be up to set the pumps going,
as it was evident the brig must be taking in water very
fast. After searching about for some time, we could
find nothing more fit for our purpose than the two
pump-handles, one of which Augustus took, and I the
other. Having secured these, we stripped off the shirt
of the corpse and dropped the body overboard. Peters
and myself then went below, leaving Augustus to
watch upon deck, where he took his station just where
Allen had been placed and with his back to the cabin
companion-way, so that, if any of the mate's gang
should come up, he might suppose it was the watch.

As soon as I got below I commenced disguising my
self so as to represent the corpse of Rogers. The shirt
which we had taken from the body aided us very much,


Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

for it was of singular form and character and easily
recognizable, a kind of smock, which the deceased
wore over his other clothing. It was a blue stockinet,
with large white stripes running across. Having put
this on, I proceeded to equip myself with a false stom
ach, in imitation of the horrible deformity of the
swollen corpse. This was soon effected by means of
stuffing with some bedclothes. I then gave the same
appearance to my hands by drawing on a pair of white
woollen mittens, and filling them in with any kind of
rags that offered themselves. Peters then arranged
my face, first rubbing it well over with white chalk and
afterward splotching it with blood, which he took from
a cut in his finger. The streak across the eye was not
forgotten, and presented a most shocking appearance.


AS I viewed myself in a fragment of looking-glass
which hung up in the cabin, and by the dim light of a
kind of battle-lantern, I was so impressed with a sense
of vague awe at my appearance and at the recollection
of the terrific reality which I was thus representing,
that I was seized with a violent tremor, and could
scarcely summon resolution to go on with my part. It
was necessary, however, to act with decision, and
Peters and myself went upon deck.

Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

We found there everything safe, and, keeping close
to the bulwarks, the three of us crept to the cabin com
panion-way. It was only partially closed, precautions
having been taken to prevent its being suddenly pushed
to from without by means of placing billets of wood on
the upper step so as to interfere with the shutting. We
found no difficulty in getting a full view of the interior
of the cabin through the cracks where the hinges were
placed. It now proved to have been very fortunate
for us that we had not attempted to take them by sur
prise, for they were evidently on the alert. Only one
was asleep, and he lying just at the foot of the com
panion-ladder, with a musket by his side. The rest
were seated on several mattresses, which had been
taken from the berths and thrown on the floor. They
were engaged in earnest conversation; and although
they had been carousing, as appeared from two empty
jugs, with some tin tumblers which lay about, they
were not as much intoxicated as usual. All had
knives, one or two of them pistols, and a great many
muskets were lying in a berth close at hand.

We listened to their conversation for some time
before we could make up our minds how to act, having
as yet resolved on nothing determinate, except that we
would attempt to paralyze their exertions, when we
should attack them, by means of the apparition of
Rogers. They were discussing their piratical plans, in
which all we could hear distinctly was, that they would


Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

unite with the crew of a schooner Hornet, and, if pos
sible, get the schooner herself into their possession
preparatory to some attempt on a large scale, the par
ticulars of which could not be made out by either
of us.

One of the men spoke of Peters, when the mate re
plied to him in a low voice which could not be distin
guished, and afterward added more loudly, that " he
could not understand his being so much forward with
the captain's brat in the forecastle, and he thought the
sooner both of them were overboard the better." To
this no answer was made, but we could easily perceive
that the hint was well received by the whole party, and
more particularly by Jones. At this period I was ex
cessively agitated, the more so as I could see that
neither Augustus nor Peters could determine how to
act. I made up my mind, however, to sell my life as
dearly as possible, and not to suffer myself to be over
come by any feelings of trepidation.

The tremendous noise made by the roaring of the
wind in the rigging and the washing of the sea over
the deck prevented us from hearing what was said,
except during momentary lulls. In one of these we
all distinctly heard the mate tell one of the men to " go
forward and order the d d lubbers to come into the
cabin," where he could have an eye upon them, for he
wanted no such secret doings on board the brig. It
was well for us that the pitching of the vessel at this


Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

moment was so violent as to prevent this order from
being carried into instant execution. The cook got up
from his mattress to go for us, when a tremendous
lurch, which I thought would carry away the masts,
threw him headlong against one of the larboard state
room doors, bursting it open and creating a good deal
of other confusion. Luckily, neither of our party was
thrown from his position, and we had time to make a
precipitate retreat to the forecastle and arrange a hur
ried plan of action before the messenger made his
appearance, or rather before he put his head out of the
companion-hatch, for he did not come on deck. From
this station he could not notice the absence of Allen,
and he accordingly bawled out, as if to him, repeating
the orders of the mate. Peters cried out, "Ay, ay,"
in a disguised voice, and the cook immediately went
below, without entertaining a suspicion that all was
not right.

My two companions now proceeded boldly aft and
down into the cabin, Peters closing the door after him
in the same manner he had found it. The mate re
ceived them with feigned cordiality and told Augustus
that, since he had behaved himself so well of late, he
might take up his quarters in the cabin and be one of
them for the future. He then poured him out a tum
bler half full of rum and made him drink it. All this
I saw and heard, for I followed my friends to the cabin
as soon as the door was shut, and took up my old point

Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

of observation. I had brought with me the two pump-
handles, one of which I secured near the companion-
way, to be ready for use when required.

I now steadied myself as well as possible so as to
have a good view of all that was passing within, and
endeavored to nerve myself to the task of descending
among the mutineers when Peters should make a sig
nal to me, as agreed upon. Presently he contrived to
turn the conversation upon the bloody deeds of the
mutiny, and by degrees led the men to talk of the thou
sand superstitions which are so universally current
among seamen. I could not make out all that was
said, but I could plainly see the effects of the conversa
tion in the countenances of those present. The mate
was evidently much agitated, and presently, when
some one mentioned the terrific appearance of Rogers's
corpse, I thought he was upon the point of swooning.
Peters now asked him if he did not think it would be
better to have the body thrown overboard at once, as
it was too horrible a sight to see it floundering about
in the scuppers. At this the villain absolutely gasped
for breath and turned his head slowly round upon his
companions, as if imploring some one to go up and
perform the task. No one, however, stirred, and it
was quite evident that the whole party were wound
up to the highest pitch of nervous excitement. Peters
now made me the signal. I immediately threw open
the door of the companion-way, and, descending

Narrative of A. Gordon Pym

without uttering a syllable, stood erect in the midst of
the party.

The intense effect produced by this sudden appari
tion is not at all to be wondered at when the various
circumstances are taken into consideration. Usually,
in cases of a similar nature, there is left in the mind
of the spectator some glimmering of doubt as to the
reality of the vision before his eyes ; a degree of hope,
however feeble, that he is the victim of chicanery, and
that the apparition is not actually a visitant from the
old world of shadows. It is not too much to say that
such remnants of doubt have been at the bottom of

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