Terror is not of Germany, but of the soul  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

"Terror is not of Germany, but of the soul" is a dictum by Edgar Allan Poe recorded in the preface to Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque.

Context

In some storeis, Edgar Allan Poe is a re-interpreter of gothic fiction in the 19th century. His story "The Fall of the House of Usher" (1839) explores the 'terrors of the soul' whilst revisiting classic Gothic tropes of aristocratic decay, death and madness. The legendary villainy of the Spanish Inquisition, previously explored by Gothicists Ann Radcliffe, Matthew Gregory Lewis and Charles Maturin, is revisited in "The Pit and the Pendulum" (1842). The influence of Ann Radcliffe is also detectable in Poe's "The Oval Portrait" (1842), including an honorary mention of her name in the text of the story.

See also




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