Ligeia
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Ligeia

3.85 of 5 stars 3.85  ·  rating details  ·  1,137 ratings  ·  67 reviews
Ligeia is a short story written by Edgar Allan Poe and first published in 1838. Ligeia is widely considered to be one of the top 100 greatest books of all time. This great novel will surely attract a whole new generation of readers. For many, Ligeia is required reading for various courses and curriculum's. And for others who simply enjoy reading timeless pieces of classic...more
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Published February 8th 2011 by United Holdings Group (first published 1838)
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Prashant
This is first work of Poe that I read and how the details can be used to make the story stick to the reader.

The story is narrated by a guy who is desperately in love with his wife Ligeia and is praising everything about her. Poe has described the character at length so it can come alive to the reader.

After the death of Legeia the man marries Lady Rowena. The new wife succumbs to illness one night and the man mourns her death all night while her body lies in the same room.

What follows is grues...more
Chad O'Haver
While "Ligeia" has no apparent meaning, while the metaphor, if any is present, is not so facilely discerned, I believe this story is a presentation of the preoccupation of the mind upon a single, wistful thought (in this case, his deceased wife Ligeia, and the longing for her return) and how this preoccupation can manifest as an absurd event (in this case, the resurrection of Ligeia through the body of his second, also deceased wife, Rowena).

Possibly, Poe would have been a fine psychologist, or...more
Rhiannon Johnson
Poe gives a marriage true immortality in his short story “Ligeia.” Even death does not part these two. Ligeia’s husband loves her so intensely that his love is a form of worship. After her death, she lives on in his heart and mind. He continues his worship of her, builds her a shrine, and provides her with a human body to be reborn into. This parallels the underlying theme of idolatry throughout the story. The narrator’s love for his wife is so powerful that it enables Ligeia to be reborn, simil...more
Viji (Bookish endeavors)
A unique mixture of romance and horror.!! I liked the love story in this- the narrator being unable to forget his late wife even after his second marriage.. His second wife fails to make an impression on him in comparison with the first wife whom he almost places on a pedestal.. The second wife falls mysteriously ill and dies. Sitting with her dead body, he feels the body stirring and coming to life, not as the dull second wife but imbued with the dark features of his first wife- his own Ligeia....more
Greg
Not only the tale and description, the style of writing is transporting.
Sylvia McIvers
In a ruined German city, a man lives with his wonderful wife Ligiea. Really, she's wonderful. Three pages of detail on her eyes, her nose, her mouth her skin, her hair, her wisdom, her walk - and another few pages for her to die, all the while fighting, never surrendering her will to Death.

Our Hero wanders to an English abbey - also ruined - and sets up an opium addicted life. He marries a woman who is described in one sentence. Several paragraphs explain how their bedroom has tomb-elements, bes...more
Jen
I love Poe. I love the mix of light and dark and strangeness and beauty that is present in all of his work. His language is beautiful and rich. The descriptions of the women he obsesses about in his stories are particularly lovely, and there's something deliciously terrifying and honest about all the macabre madness. This is a short story about obsession and undying love, fantasy and reality, and great beauty that cannot survive.
Dejan
A beautifully written piece of gothic romance with a fairly simple plot in my eyes: the narrator lost Ligeia – a woman he practically worshipped due to her attractiveness and intellect – and as if that was not enough, his second wife later also died. This thrust him into a state of intense grief and substance abuse. Although the idea of Ligeia's rebirth in Rowena's body seems appealing from a supernatural perspective, my opinion is that it was merely a hallucination resulting from the narrator's...more
Amy
Ok, I am having a tough time with Ligeia. I loved the ghost story part of this. Crimony, I wanted to shoot up out of my chair and go screaming from the room! The suspense was spectacular! I mean, could you imagine, your dead spouse suddenly re-animating and walking across the room toward you while still in their shroud?! Granted, this would be more horrifying if it were in a gothic setting, and if there were all kinds of Egyptian funerary objects scattered around the room, but thankfully, those...more
Literary Ames {Against GR Censorship}
The madness of grief personified.

Passionately in love with Ligeia, his wife, until she dies and he becomes obsessed with every detail of her memory. Later marrying Lady Rowena because he secretly likes that she 'shunned' him at every turn and that she's Ligeia's opposite in every way, but despite this he hates her because she's not the one he loved most.

Unfortunately, Rowena succumbs to the same illness as his first wife: consumption (tuberculosis). At her bedside, high on opium he thinks of h...more
Gharam
I've read some analysis and so forth to see it from other perspectives, but I'm still firmly fond of the one I initially built.
The contrast between Ligeia and Rowena is very apparent, Ligeia is darkness, irrationality, vast knowledge and beauty, her alien eyes resemble the unknown which is usually appealing, endless possibilities, captivating, alluring; she's everything that would be considered tempting to a human being.
Rowena is light, simple beauty, the "new" life, some sort of resuscitation...more
Kell
Like The Pit and the Pendulum, Ligeia felt a little claustrophobic to me, with much of the action happening in one room, but it seemed there was precious little action and very little actual plot.

Once again, there were some chilling moments, such as the description of the narrator’s wives as they descend into death, but overall, I felt the story was lacking in real thrills, or even slight shivers.

Poe’s writing is completely failing to grip me.

It has been suggested by a friend that my ambivalence...more
sabisteb
Poe versucht noch immer zu Beweisen, wer er wirklich ist. Nachdem er in Teil 30 Hinweise auf eine möglicherweise noch lebende Schwester erhalten hat, macht er sich mit Leonie auf die Reise nach Baltimore. Er gibt sich als Schriftsteller aus, der eine Biografie über Edgar Allan Poe schreiben will und wird an einen seltsamen Buchhändler verwiesen, der vernarrt in Poes Mutter Elizabeth Poe war.

Obwohl der Auftakt der neuen Staffel durchaus gelungen ist, bewegt es sich doch auf altbekannten Pfaden. P...more
Charlie Ramirez
Poe, most known for his dark and Gothic tone throughout his various poems and stories, continues this tradition in Ligeia. Although short in length, i had to read it a few times to fully gain an understanding of the story and the various devices Poe uses. What I've learned from Poe's Ligeia is the role the unreliable narrator plays in the development of the plot as a whole. Poe strategically places elements throughout the story that indicate that the narrator may be delusional from the opium he...more
Leirah
4'5

Me derrito con la prosa de este autor. La atmósfera macabra que logra crear en sus historias, el bellísimo lenguaje y la inteligencia que desprende en cada hoja me enloquece (see what I just did there?)

Esta historia en particular, es una perfecta mezcla gótica de horror y romance; combinación que, personalmente, me gustó mucho.

El medio punto menos es porque me quedé con dolorosas ganas de más... :)
Francy Narváez
“That motley drama—oh, be sure
It shall not be forgot!
With its Phantom chased for evermore
By a crowd that seize it not,
Through a circle that ever returneth in
To the self-same spot,
And much of Madness, and more of Sin,
And Horror the soul of the plot.”


I loved this so much, everytime I re-read Edgar Allan Poe I love him more and more♥
Caitlyn
As much of Poe's work goes, I'm not sure if this story can be read in a vacuum. Very similar in both theme and composition, I think this story is best in a paired reading with "Berenice." It is a bit slow when compared to his other short stories (though nothing can surpass the supreme bore of "The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym"), and I certainly don't at all find the denouement surprising; however, this story is f___in' tense. The oscillation between delusion and reality is as maddening as ever...more
Erika B. (Snogging on Sunday Books)
3.5 stars! EEEEE! Edgar Allen Poe was BRILLIANT! And had one creepy mind! This book is mainly about the extremes of marriage and the downside of one partner having too much power in the relationship!
Darren Tang
Descriptive detail is the key to this short story. Not only is it an exciting read, but Poe does a marvellous job in stretching out long sentences in a way that emphasizes the dark and dreary aspects of the story. He continuously builds and builds through his focus on the minute particualrs of the surrounding scenery which adds an eerie quality to the main character's mood. The eerieness mentioned is critically important in contributing towards the impact of the ending, in which there is absolut...more
Mia McInnis
A dark tale of love and dark dedication alongside brutal and ruthless powers that let no soul stand in the way of this hellish romance.
Zöe Zhai
I re-read it with fully curiosity in English language, I can't place this book in my reading books corpos, but the moment I got through the first sentence, I realized I read it five years ago in Chinese. It shows how impressive Poe's langauge is !!!

Secondly, I didn't read it in a way of Orientalism, but only surreal story/Gothic story of a beautiful woman he loved, so that in the last moment, he has delusions about Ligeia's coming back. Still, I don't quite think it as a work to express his ide...more
Matthew Coleman
Perhaps my favorite part about this short story is Poe's skillful use of the unreliable narrator. Ligeia, the narrator's love, dies. The narrator remarries, but his new wife (Rowena) also becomes sick and dies...or does she. Poe describes a scene of the terrifying, haphazard revival of Rowena, which concludes in...well, I will not spoil the ending.

Deep in Poe's rich writing are several notes that the narrator has turned to opium after the death of Ligeia. While the ghostlike scene at the end se...more
Caleb
This story is straight fire. Just read it it's like 15 pages.
Tabatha
This was an interesting read. Very eloquent and passionate.
Dani (The Pluviophile Reader)
What a gorgeous story! Poe's writing is just as potent in this day and age. I loved the descriptions of Lady Liegia, even if the narrator is not fully reliable he speaks of he so amazingly fond of her making it a pleasure to read in trying to envision what this wonderful woman would have been like. What makes this story interesting is you have to wonder what is going on with the narrator when (view spoiler)...more
Rebekah
Analyzed for Honors English
Lisa James
A love story turned nightmare, Ligeia is the narrator's first wife, & the love of his life, which you can see in the descriptions. The charming tale of boundless love & joy turns to despair at her death, & his relocation to the north of England, to an antique abbey that he remodels the interior of in sumptuous, eclectic fashion, & brings his second wife, apparently a local heiress, to. It is what happens in the hours immediately following HER death that lend to the inherent creep...more
Jason Reeser
As someone who enjoys detailed writing, I'd have to say this story's heavy detail is ruined by what turns out to be only the sketchiest of plots, and a jerk-stop ending that leaves one thinking that Poe might have run out of time to finish it before he had to turn it in to the editor. Is the story creepy, or at least macabre? Yes, though it hardly qualifies as a story. The imagery, of course, is pure Poe, and so we can at least enjoy dark view of the world in this almost-story.
Anuradha
I'm quite a fan of Poe's work and expect a lot from him but this was one of the less brilliant ones. The storytelling isnt bad and I esp. liked the phrase "Her beauty had the radiance of an opium dream" However, good storytelling isnt much without a good story and Legeia lacks the unpredictability of other short stories by Poe. Not bad, but not great.
Scott
Apr 09, 2013 Scott rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Turn of the Screw Fans
It took a time gettin into, even being a short story. Poe has a richness in his narrative description that paints a vivid be it macabre vision to the reader. It was not until the end that I realized what this story was about and it hit with a resounding spine chilling thump when I did!
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The name Poe brings to mind images of murderers and madmen, premature burials, and mysterious women who return from the dead. His works have been in print since 1827 and include such literary classics as “The Tell-Tale Heart,” “The Raven,” and “The Fall of the House of Usher.” This versatile writer’s oeuvre includes short stories, poetry, a novel, a textbook, a book of scientific theory, and hundr...more
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The Tell-Tale Heart and Other Writings The Complete Stories and Poems The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Tales Essential Tales and Poems The Cask of Amontillado

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“In beauty of face no maiden ever equaled her. It was the radiance of an opium-dream - an airy and spirit-lifting vision more wildly divine than the fantasies which hovered about the slumbering souls of the daughters of Delos.” 110 likes
“In our endeavors to recall to memory something long forgotten, we often find ourselves upon the very verge of remembrance, without being able, in the end, to remember.” 32 likes
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