*Title: The Buried Alive by John Galt
Date Read: 10 October 2009
Available Online?: YES
Briefly: The narrator relates an experience of being buried alive after everyone else thought he had expired.
Afterthoughts: It’s great to be back into the reading realms of the Victorian Gothic, and a story which plays up beautifully to the Victorian obsession with premature burial. This story is truly chilling, and it reminds of very much of Poe’s The Premature Burial (which I read and reviewed back in April). This tale however is shorter than Poe’s and in many ways it’s better. I particularly love the ending which also briefly explores the practice of grave robbing; widespread during this period (1821). It kind of portends what would happen in Edinburgh (the publishing home of Blackwood’s) only six years later. Emmm…I wonder if this exact tale in any way whetted the grave robbing appetite of either Burke or Hare.
Notable Quote: I heard the sound of weeping at my pillow and the voice of the nurse say, “He is dead.” I cannot describe what I felt at these words. I exerted my utmost power of volition to stir myself, but I could not move even an eyelid. After a short pause my friend drew near; and sobbing, and convulsed with grief, drew his hand over my face, and closed my eyes. The world was then darkened, but I could hear, and feel, and suffer.
*Story read as part of my 31 Shots of Shock reading challenge.