A Critical Edition
Publication Year: 2013
Published by: Syracuse University Press
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Title Page, Copyright
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I thank Syracuse University Press for the opportunity to produce this edition, in particular Jim MacKillop and Glenn Wright for approach-ing me with the project, as well as Jennika Baines, Annelise Finegan, and Annie Barva for their expert help and professionalism in bringing it to completion. I also thank the editors for compiling the timeline....
Notes on the Text
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First serialized in the journal The Dark Blue and published shortly thereafter in the short story collection In a Glass Darkly, Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu’s 1872 vampire tale is in many ways the overlooked older sister of Bram Stoker’s later and more acclaimed work Dracula.1 Despite its acknowledged infl uence on the later text and its recogni-...
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Upon a paper attached to the Narrative which follows, Doctor Hes-selius has written a rather elaborate note, which he accompanies with a reference to his Essay on the strange subject which the MS. illuminates.This mysterious subject, he treats, in that Essay, with his usual learning and acumen, and with remarkable directness and condensa-...
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In Styria,1 we, though by no means magnifi cent people, inhabit a castle, or schloss.2 A small income, in that part of the world, goes a great way. Eight or nine hundred a year does wonders. Scantily My father is English, and I bear an English name, although I never saw England. But here, in this lonely and primitive place, where every-...
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I am now going to tell you something so strange that it will require all your faith in my veracity to believe my story. It is not only true, sometimes did, to take a little ramble with him along that beautiful forest vista which I have mentioned as lying in front of the schloss.“General Spielsdorf cannot come to us so soon as I had hoped,” ...
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We followed the cortege1 with our eyes until it was swiftly lost to sight in the misty wood; and the very sound of the hoofs and the wheels an illusion of a moment but the young lady, who just at that moment opened her eyes. I could not see, for her face was turned from me, but she raised her head, evidently looking about her, and I heard a very ...
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...describing her. She was slender, and wonderfully graceful. Except that her movements were languid—very languid—indeed, there was nothing in her appearance to indicate an invalid. Her complexion was rich and brilliant; her features were small and beautifully formed; her eyes large, dark, and lustrous; her hair was quite wonderful, I never ...
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This evening there arrived from Gratz1 the grave, dark-faced son of the picture cleaner, with a horse and cart laden with two large packing cases, having many pictures in each. It was a journey of ten leagues, and whenever a messenger arrived at the schloss from our little capital of Gratz, we used to crowd about him in the hall, to ...
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When we got into the drawing-room, and had sat down to our coffee and chocolate, although Carmilla did not take any, she seemed quite herself again, and Madame, and Mademoiselle De LaFontaine, joined us, and made a little card party, in the course of which papa came in sofa, and asked her, a little anxiously, whether she had heard from her ...
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It would be vain my attempting to tell you the horror with which, even now, I recall the occurrence of that night. It was no such transi-tory terror as a dream leaves behind it. It seemed to deepen by time, and communicated itself to the room and the very furniture that had I could not bear next day to be alone for a moment. I should have ...
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At sight of the room, perfectly undisturbed except for our violent entrance, we began to cool a little, and soon recovered our senses suffi ciently to dismiss the men. It had struck Mademoiselle that pos-sibly Carmilla had been wakened by the uproar at her door, and in her fi rst panic had jumped from her bed, and hid herself in a press,1 or ...
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As Carmilla would not hear of an attendant sleeping in her room, my father arranged that a servant should sleep outside her door, so that she could not attempt to make another such excursion without being whom my father had sent for without telling me a word about it, Madame accompanied me to the library; and there the grave little ...
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It was about ten months since we had last seen him; but that time had suffi ced to make an alteration of years in his appearance. He had grown thinner; something of gloom and anxiety had taken the place of that cordial serenity which used to characterise his features. His dark blue eyes, always penetrating, now gleamed with a sterner light ...
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...“With all my heart,” said the General, with an effort; and after a short pause in which to arrange his subject, he commenced one of the “My dear child was looking forward with great pleasure to the visit you had been so good as to arrange for her to your charming daughter.” Here he made me a gallant but melancholy bow. “In the ...
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...“‘Then we are to lose Madame the Countess, but I hope only for a few “‘It may be that only, or it may be a few weeks. It was very unlucky “‘You shall know me,’ she said, ‘but not at present. We are older and better friends than, perhaps, you suspect. I cannot yet declare myself. I shall in three weeks pass your beautiful schloss, about which ...
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...“There soon, however, appeared some drawbacks. In the fi rst place, Millarca complained of extreme languor—the weakness that remained after her late illness—and she never emerged from her room till the afternoon was pretty far advanced. In the next place, it was acciden-tally discovered, although she always locked her door on the inside, ...
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...“My beloved child,” he resumed, “was now growing rapidly worse. The physician who attended her had failed to produce the slightest impression upon her disease, for such I then supposed it to be. He saw my alarm, and suggested a consultation. I called in an abler physician, from Gratz. Several days elapsed before he arrived. He was a good and ...
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As he spoke one of the strangest looking men I ever beheld, entered the chapel at the door through which Carmilla had made her entrance and her exit. He was tall, narrow-chested, stooping, with high shoul-ders, and dressed in black. His face was brown and dried in with deep furrows; he wore an oddly-shaped hat with a broad leaf. His hair, long ...
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I write all this you suppose with composure. But far from it; I can-not think of it without agitation. Nothing but your earnest desire so repeatedly expressed, could have induced me to sit down to a task that has unstrung my nerves for months to come, and reinduced a shadow of the unspeakable horror which years after my deliverance contin-...
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An Irish Carmilla?
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It is best to be straight from the very beginning: Ireland is never mentioned in Sheridan Le Fanu’s Carmilla (1871). To argue that the story, although set in eastern Europe, is “really about” Ireland initially appears improbable. This improbability has not, however, dissuaded some of my more intrepid forerunners, most important Robert Tracy, ...
Carmilla and the Politicsof Indistinguishability
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Despite a prolifi c writing career, an impressive literary reputation dur-ing his lifetime, and a style that contemporary critics have come to label a “distinctive Anglo-Irish Gothic mode” (Glover 1996, 29),1 Sheridan Le Fanu’s fame as a gothic writer has come to rest primar-ily on a novel he did not write: Bram Stoker’s 1897 Dracula, whose ...
A “Ghastly Fancy”
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...fusion, if a distinction were established, which certainly exists, esque—between those, which please the eye in their natural state, and those, which please from some quality, capable of being illus-In a pivotal scene in Sheridan Le Fanu’s 1872 vampire tale Carmilla, an ancient portrait that has been in the possession of our narrator’s ...
On Celluloid Carmillas
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For a book that has long dwelt in the shadows of Britain’s literary canon, Carmilla has exerted a powerful hold on fi lm. To date, at least seven adaptations have been produced, and countless other movies have engaged the text in some way. No doubt, Le Fanu’s voluptuous vampire inspires this attraction. With more than three thousand vam-...
Page Count: 196
Illustrations: 3 Color Illustrations
Publication Year: 2013
Series Title: Irish Studies
Series Editor Byline: Jim MacKillop