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3.81  ·  Rating Details ·  1,875 Ratings  ·  122 Reviews
Berenice is a horror short story by Edgar Allan Poe. The tale is centered on the death of a young girl, named Berenice, and the mysterious visions of her cousin, Egaeus.
Paperback, 24 pages
Published March 1st 2009 by BookSurge (first published March 1835)
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The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan PoeThe Gift of the Magi by O. HenryLove, Life and Everything Else by Xunaira J.The Cask of Amontillado by Edgar Allan PoeCyborg Spell Shop by James Chalk
Single Short Story
473 books — 243 voters
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Best Short Stories
1,302 books — 834 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Mar 19, 2015 Fernando rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Berenice es considerado el cuento más violento de Poe. ¡y vaya si lo es! Estuvo cerca de ser censurado por la naturaleza de la historia y del final (sin hacer spoiler, aunque creo que todo el mundo lo leyó). Berenice es la antítesis de su amada Virginia Clemm, o Sissy, como la llamaba él cariñosamente, dado que Berenice es la prima del narrador y Virginia era, además de esposa de Poe, su prima.
Glenn Russell
Jun 04, 2014 Glenn Russell rated it it was amazing
Since there are a few dozen reviews already posted here, in the spirit of freshness I will compare Poe’s tale with a few other tales, each of these other tales picking up on a ‘Berenice’ theme.

In ‘The Gaze’ by Jean Richepin, the narrator peers through the window of a cell at a madman, arms spread, head uplifted, transfixed by a point on a wall near the ceiling. The doctor-alienist relates to the narrator how this inmate is obsessed with the gaze of eyes from an artist’s portrait. “For t
Oct 06, 2016 Carmo rated it really liked it
Shelves: contos
Genial Poe, que ainda me faz roer as unhas (e os dedos)!
She Keeps Her Hair on But …

Berenice, which was published in 1835 in the Southern Literary Messenger, whose refined readers, by the way, were quite disgusted with its unusual brutality, has always been my favourite story by Edgar Allan Poe because it is cleverly written, having a twist within the twist of the tale even, and it shows Poe’s ability to create a dark and looming atmosphere.

(view spoiler)
Sep 25, 2015 L.B. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: clásicos
1835 (Dicebant mihi sodales, si sepulchrum amicae visitarem, curas meas aliquantulum fore levatas: Decíanme los amigos que encontraría algún alivio a mi dolor visitando la tumba de la amada.)

Berenice/Virginia, Egaeus/Edgar, O al menos al principio de la historia.
Bastante violento pero me gusto.
Grecia Robles

Me encantó volverme a reencontrar con Edgar Allan Poe.

Tenía altas expectativas con respecto a este relato ya que lo catalogan como el más sádico y espeluznante de toda su obra y me gustó pero no tanto como otros. Su punto fuerte es el final que siempre es sorpresivo o cuando lo ves venir de igual manera te golpea

Althea Ann
Nov 20, 2014 Althea Ann rated it liked it
I've read nearly all of Poe at some point or another, but I didn't have a memory of reading this one before.
For such a short piece, I felt like it took a while to draw me in. However, it certainly ends with some drama... ("Pow, right in the kisser...?")
Here we have a young couple - the young man: dark, brooding, and perhaps unhealthily obsessive... the young woman: lovely, without fault, yet languishing of illness.
Of course, tragedy will strike - and horrors beyond tragedy.

Just coincidentally,
May 19, 2015 Soycd rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016-1

The realities of the world affected me as visions, and as visions only, while the wild ideas of the land of dreams became, in turn, not the material of my every-day existence, but in very deed that existence utterly and solely in itself.

Berenice follows the story of Egaeus, a strange individual who is prone to isolation and suffers from an obsessive disorder.

To muse for long unwearied hours, with my attention riveted to some frivolous device on the margin, or in the typography of a book; to beco
Apr 02, 2016 Nathan rated it liked it
Tayler Boswell
Dec 22, 2015 Tayler Boswell rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2-stars
I feel like I'm going against the grain on this one.

There were plenty of great things about this story. For one, I think it most perfectly embodied and represented the Gothic traditions and Gothic style. Everything about this story screamed Gothic, and, of course, the result was an atmosphere rich in emotion and suspense. It just made it totally unavoidable to be really creeped out.

However, I'll admit, I struggled with figuring out what the hell was going on. I think that could have been intenti
Oct 27, 2016 Jason rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Horror short stories
Recommended to Jason by: Poe collection
Shelves: classics, horror, 2016
"It is more than probable that I am not understood — but I fear that it is indeed in no manner possible to convey to the mind of the merely general reader, an adequate idea..."

Yeah, what he said right near the beginning of this tale. 2.5 stars rounded up to three. Not looking good for Mr. Poe's horror short stories so far, or at least the obscure ones. He's pretty weighty, and I had to use the internet to look up what the hell was going on again, but maybe I'm not being fair. I was playing the m
Graham Worthington
Mar 04, 2011 Graham Worthington rated it really liked it
Despite all who have attempted the genre since, Poe remains the supreme master of the horrific short story. From this collection I select "Berenice" to comment on, not only because it is a classic example of Poe, but also because it deals with a subject so typically his, that of obsession.
There is little point in trying not to "spoil" a Poe story by avoiding telling the final outcome, for in this story, as in much of his work, the fascination lies not in a teasing or elaborate plot leading to a
Andrei Tamaş
Dec 15, 2015 Andrei Tamaş rated it really liked it
Poe are o mare înclinaţie spre metafizica astronomică. În această proză prezintă, la persoana I, cazul unui somnambul care s-a pierdut în simboluri.

1. "Încredinţat eu însumi, nu caut să conving pe alţii."

2. "... fie că amintirea zilei trecute este durerea zilei de astăzi, fie că suferinţele clipei de faţă se obârşesc din extazele care AR FI PUTUT FI CÂNDVA."

3. "Felurite sunt nenorocirile pe pământ."
Jan 16, 2017 JamesBellaqua rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Un relato que me sorprendió. Había visto buenas recomendaciones y comentarios, diciendo que era macabro.

Me animé y comencé a leerlo; resultó que ha sido uno de los relatos más perturbadores y enfermizos que he leído en mi vida. Muy bueno.
Sep 12, 2013 Diana rated it it was amazing
"Berenice! -I call upon her name - Berenice! - and from the gray ruins of memory a thousand tumultuous recollections are startled at the sound!"

The first important thing in this book which I noticed was the Latin quotation with which the book starts: "Dicebant mihi sodales, si sepulchrum amicae visitarem, curas meas aliquantulum forelevatas." I have to admit that my translation, without looking at the footnote was awfully wrong. I guess my Latin has worsened a lot. Although, after looking at the
Ana Silva Rosa
Jan 16, 2015 Ana Silva Rosa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
disturbing... so much madness in one piece. I love this.
Jan 24, 2017 Bruna rated it really liked it
So freaking weird
Lucía Belén
Mar 04, 2017 Lucía Belén rated it liked it
No me convenció del todo.
May 01, 2011 Bonnie rated it really liked it
Poe's language is not the easiest to get to grips with, especially if you're not fluent in French and Latin, so, given its short length, it is ideally suited to being read at the computer with easy access to a translator at hand.

The version I read is the edited one at This version was self-censored by Poe to remove one particular scene in which the narrator sits with his cousin's body.

The story is definitely disturbing. With the events told through the e
Aug 25, 2015 Amina rated it really liked it
"...Of Mad'selle Salle it has been well said, "que tous ses pas etaient des sentiments," and of Berenice I more seriously believed que toutes ses dents etaient des idees. Des idees!—ah here was the idiotic thought that destroyed me! Des idees!—ah therefore it was that I coveted them so madly! I felt that their possession could alone ever restore me to peace, in giving me back to reason.."
A tale where insanity and obssession take all of their "envergure"!!! Nice!
Hoda Marmar
Apr 20, 2013 Hoda Marmar rated it really liked it
I have read this over 5 years ago, and I never forgot it because it terrified me to read the last page. When he opens that box, MY OH MY! Alright, no spoilers, but this was one sick psychotic short story that made me think maybe Poe is a serial killer. It also made 'The Raven' seem ordinary next to this one.
This should be a Halloween read :)
Viji  (Bookish endeavors)
Oct 08, 2014 Viji (Bookish endeavors) rated it really liked it
I re-read the story after reading the end. And I bet many others might have done the same. The story till the end is something and when it reaches the end it's completely another. I was shocked. I'm going to get the creeps every time somebody compliments on my eyes or teeth hereafter.
A truly great story.
Jan 28, 2015 Abril rated it it was amazing
El lenguaje de Poe es complicado, tal como la mayoría dice; pero sus citas contribuyen con el relato.
El cuento es muy atrapante por la maravillosa manera de escribir del autor, y también es muy perturbador; hasta aterrador si pueden imaginar detalladamente la última escena
K. Anna Hardy
Mar 04, 2016 K. Anna Hardy rated it really liked it
I have arranged my thoughts on this short story into a haiku:

"A dark, twisted urge.
Haunting, grinning in your mind--
Blotting out all else."
Liviu Bogdan
Mar 10, 2017 Liviu Bogdan rated it liked it
"Berenice is a short horror story by Edgar Allan Poe, first published in the Southern Literary Messenger in 1835 (Poe was 26 when he wrote this). Contemporary readers were horrified by the story's violence and complained to the editor of the Messenger. Though Poe later published a self-censored version of the work he believed he should be judged solely by how many copies were sold."
hah. :D
Nuno Ferreira
Jan 15, 2016 Nuno Ferreira rated it liked it
Até certo ponto, o conto foi um tanto ou quanto confuso. Não digo isso pela ação propriamente dita, mas pelo palavreado usado pelo autor. Ao contextualizar-nos na história, Edgar mastigou a natureza dos personagens de uma forma ad nauseam, embora o texto tenha ficado mais fluído com o desenrolar da trama. A linguagem lúgubre e intimista remeteu-me de imediato para Lovecraft, que teria sido inspirado por Poe nas suas histórias, não só pela narração em primeira pessoa ou pelo tom negro e pesado, c ...more
Apr 08, 2012 Kitty rated it really liked it
While I think the award of most upsetting Poe story has to go to "The Black Cat" I think the most violent and gruesome belongs to "Berenice". Man oh man, if only we had been reading THIS in AP Lit back in high school rather than the usual ho hum Poe I would have paid closer attention in class.

To say too much of the plot and story would be to spoil it. It's a long, long build up of a series of happenings of seemingly little import or interest - we've seen Poe do the whole separated lovers thing b
M. Ashraf
Jan 08, 2013 M. Ashraf rated it really liked it
This is one of the best Horror stories from Poe, it was gruesome, crazy and disturbing;
so it is great!!!!

MISERY is manifold. The wretchedness of earth is multiform. Overreaching the wide horizon as the rainbow, its hues are as various as the hues of that arch, --as distinct too, yet as intimately blended. Overreaching the wide horizon as the rainbow! How is it that from beauty I have derived a type of unloveliness? --from the covenant of peace a simile of sorrow? But as, in ethics, evil is a
Natasha P.
Aug 09, 2016 Natasha P. rated it really liked it
Shelves: al-tacto
Dicebant mihi sodales, si sepulchrum amicae visitarem, curas meas aliquantulum fore levatas. (Ebn Zaiat)."Me decían mis compañeros que al visitar el sepulcro de mi amigo aliviaría algo mi dolor"

Poe nos habla siempre de un amor tenebroso, que nace siempre de la oscuridad y la tristeza, un amor diferente, menos pasional y mucho mas mental. La realidad propia que afrontaba Edgar con su amada. Un amor descrito entre un susurro y un grito desgarrador de muerte. Berenice, tanto como Morella, no es la
Jan 19, 2017 AleJandra rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: terror, clasicos
"The wild ideas, the dreams inside my head were my real world. They were my whole life."

Esperaba más de esta historia.
Es buena pero no mi favorita de Poe.
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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 hundreds of ...more
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“But as, in ethics, evil is a consequence of good, so, in fact, out of joy is sorrow born. Either the memory of past bliss is the anguish of today, or the agonies which are have their origin in the ecstasies which might have been. 58 likes
“To muse for long unwearied hours with my attention riveted to some frivolous device upon the margin, or in the typography of a book — to become absorbed for the better part of a summer's day in a quaint shadow falling aslant upon the tapestry, or upon the floor — to lose myself for an entire night in watching the steady flame of a lamp, or the embers of a fire — to dream away whole days over the perfume of a flower — to repeat monotonously some common word, until the sound, by dint of frequent repetition, ceased to convey any idea whatever to the mind — to lose all sense of motion or physical existence in a state of absolute bodily quiescence long and obstinately persevered in — Such were a few of the most common and least pernicious vagaries induced by a condition of the mental faculties, not, indeed, altogether unparalleled, but certainly bidding defiance to any thing like analysis or explanation.” 38 likes
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