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The Tomb

3.67  ·  Rating Details ·  909 Ratings  ·  55 Reviews
"The Tomb" is a short story by H. P. Lovecraft written in June 1917 and first published in the March 1922 issue of The Vagrant. It is the first work of fiction that Lovecraft wrote as an adult.

"The Tomb" tells of Jervas Dudley, a self-confessed day-dreamer. While still a child, he discovers the entrance to a mausoleum, belonging to the family Hyde, whose nearby family mans
Kindle Edition
Published (first published June 1922)
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The Call of Cthulhu by H.P. LovecraftThe Shadow Over Innsmouth by H.P. LovecraftThe Rats in the Walls by H.P. LovecraftAt the Mountains of Madness by H.P. LovecraftThe Colour Out of Space and others by H.P. Lovecraft
H.P Lovecraft collection
17th out of 103 books — 29 voters
The Garden Party and Other Stories by Katherine MansfieldThe Waste Land by T.S. EliotThe Beautiful and Damned by F. Scott FitzgeraldThe Velveteen Rabbit by Margery WilliamsBabbitt by Sinclair Lewis
Best of 1922
30th out of 35 books — 39 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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M Pereira
Jun 20, 2011 M Pereira rated it it was ok
Shelves: lovecraft, horror, 1920s
This is a very strange story, not in a bad way. I just wasn't able to get into it when I was reading it, but that is more my fault than that of the author. What I do like about the story however, is how the protagonist slowly and evidently goes more insane. This is a fascinating aspect of Lovecraft's work, quite similar to the character in Dagon or Call of Cthulu: getting into the head of a person who turns obsessive
Jun 27, 2011 namekuseijin rated it it was amazing
An early Lovecraft tale that already is as evocative and subtle as the master's best. I loved it for it subtlety, no weird monsters making a show.

I've not read the kindle edition, but from an ePub containing most of his works already in the public domain.
Ben Bromley
Jan 06, 2012 Ben Bromley rated it really liked it
The Tomb is one of the first short stories that HP Lovecraft wrote, and it sets the table for many of his later themes. There is death, insanity, and old religions (Thankfully, no trace of Lovecraft's infamous racism). I'm currently reading a compendium of HP Lovecraft stories, and am looking forward to continuing to delve into his works.
Mar 23, 2012 Godzilla rated it really liked it
I've downloaded all of HP Lovecraft's work for 77p, at that price why wouldn't I?

I must confess to having never read any of his work before, so I started at the beginning, and judging by this early effort I am going to be rewarded well.

It's a creepy, well laid out tale, yes, it's predictable, but for an early effort I can't fault it.

The character was engrossing and the tale of obsession and consequence pulled me in quickly.

Next please Mr Lovecraft...
Apr 28, 2012 Matt rated it it was amazing
Nov 04, 2012 Andrew added it
This one even creeped me out, and left me thinking about it long after it was finished.

I like Lovecraft's way of leaving the reader guessing as to what is and is not real.
Scott Harris
Lovecraft's short story about a younger boy who finds himself caught up into a dream like reality in which he enters the tomb of his ancestors and through series of events becomes convinced that he has been revealed his own burial place. Lovecraft, as always, has fun with the circumstances but this particular story struck me as being the least interesting of the pieces I have read recently.
Nov 28, 2013 Magdalena rated it it was amazing
Bizzare and creepy in the manner I completely adore.
Jan 05, 2014 Megan rated it it was amazing
Don't understand all the 3- and 4-star reviews. I loved this short story! It has many elements of a great, creepy short story. Insanity, questions of reality, death, insecurity and so much more. This was well-written and fun to read.

Makes you question if insanity is more fun than reality. If it doesn't hurt anyone else, is it really wrong living a private fantasy?
Jun 02, 2014 Colleen rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror
Very much in the style of Poe. Hardly surprising since they were nearly contemporaries. Madness, or at least the thought of going mad, scares everyone. Jervas doesn't even see it coming, does he? It happens so gradually over so long that it comes as a shock when he is locked up. And that's what I love about this 8-page story. Even knowing from the first paragraph that he's mad, I was still surprised by how it happened.
Jun 30, 2014 Scott rated it really liked it
Shelves: flat-capped
“In relating the circumstances which have led to my confinement within this refuge for the demented, I am aware that my present position will create a natural doubt of the authenticity of my narrative”
"The Tomb" is a short story of Jervas Dudley, an admitted day-dreamer, who’s opening lines immediately lay open the uncertainty about the tale and the narrator himself. Jervas spent his youth and adolescence in ancient and little known books, and exploring the fields and groves near his ancestral h
Jun 21, 2014 Shaina rated it really liked it
I've been digging into some gothic romance and this is the first in the series. I enjoyed the short story, but interestingly enough, I enjoyed the introduction by Guierrmo Del Torro even more hahaha. Anyway, I loved the onset of his insanity. It was like a slow burn. I equate his insanity with getting drunk; all is well and then BAM you're face down praying to the toilet God's...or in his case, institutionalised!
José Monico
Jul 07, 2014 José Monico rated it really liked it
This one was one of the better ones. The protagonist - a patient at an aslyum - weaves an ambiguous story set on the planes of dreams, but extended to reality.

The life surrounding him not being of much interest, Jervas became a man of books and fantastical tales. it's not clear if his ever-growing mental instability, and unbounded imagination are the manufacturers of a complete fabrication; or simply a dash of spice to an idle and unassuming walk through a mausoleum.
Fabio Vinicius Binder
Sep 22, 2015 Fabio Vinicius Binder rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
A subtly creepy short story that deals with the simple supernatural and altered perceptions rather than the later Cthulhu horrors. I certainly wasn't expecting the level of enjoyment I got out of this. The idea of insanity is basically a perspective or view of reality that is incomprehensible to the majority of people, so you'd be hard-pressed to even understand it. The story focuses on a young man who has developed an unhealthy obsession with a tomb, and perhaps an unnatural attachment with a s ...more
Jesse Rice
Dec 01, 2014 Jesse Rice rated it really liked it
Jervas Dudley is insane. If he's not insane, he's at least strongly quirky. This is a guy who has a morbid fascination with dead, so much so that he becomes obsessed with his ancestors' crypt and takes to sleeping in a coffin. Funny thing is that the coffin has his name on it. Jervas takes this to mean that this is his coffin, and this should become his tomb. That's where the crazy starts.
The story is well written. There's some stuff that makes the reader wonder if anything Jervas says should be
Jan 31, 2015 Laura rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Bettie
From BBC Radio 4 Extra:
The obsessive Jervas Dudley reveals how he came to be incarcerated in an asylum. HP Lovecraft's chilling tale read by Ryan McCluskey.
Feb 02, 2015 Valarie rated it really liked it
Stephen King has said that he was inspired by Lovecraft on many occasions. Knowing that, I couldn't help but see some similarities in this short story and one particular novel by King. That also led me to wonder; Is Jarvis really just insane or did he, maybe, have a touch of the "shine". Could that be the reason his parents were so disturbed by his behavior and obsession with death and cemeteries, which he acknowledges, they tried to shelter him from as a child? Think about some opening lines of ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
ᴥ Irena ᴥ
Jul 26, 2015 ᴥ Irena ᴥ rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
The Tomb is Jervas Dudley's explanation of why he is committed at 'this refuge for the demented'. He even warns you himself that 'you are going to hear the ravings of a crazy person'.

As a ten-year-old he discovered the Hyde family tomb. It left a lasting impression on the boy and he started thinking of it as his. Strange things started to happen there and more than once our narrator only hints at the things he had done or seen there. He never gives any details.
His speech patterns and overall be
Balazs Biro
Aug 05, 2015 Balazs Biro rated it liked it
Shelves: pulp, horror
A story about a young man becoming fascinated by an old tomb. This is not a conventional horror-story where the characters are exposed to an outside threat, but rather a story about madness and illusion...or is it?
This was a quick read with some suggestive and uncanny elements and all in all I quite enjoyed the story.
Oct 18, 2015 Marco rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
The Tomb is a short story written in June 1917 and first published in the March 1922 issue of The Vagrant. It is one of the first work of fiction that Lovecraft wrote as an adult. It is the story of Jervas Dudley, a self-confessed day-dreamer. While still a child, he discovers the entrance to a mausoleum, belonging to the family Hyde, whose nearby family mansion had burnt down many years previously. The entrance to the mausoleum is padlocked and slightly ajar. Jervas attempts to break the padloc ...more
Dec 14, 2015 Adrián rated it liked it
Un buen ejemplo de juventud sana y dinámica.
Sonia M
Jan 21, 2016 Sonia M rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
"...οι περισσότεροι άνθρωποι στον κόσμο έχουν πολύ περιορισμένο πνευματικό ορίζοντα για να ζυγίσουν με υπομονή και σύνεση εκείνα τα μεμονωμένα φαινόμενα που βρίσκονται έξω από τα πλαίσια της συνηθισμένης εμπειρίας και που τα αντιλαμβάνονται μόνο οι λίγοι, οι ψυχικά ευαίσθητοι"

Μια ιστορία τρόμου με κλειστοφοβικό σκηνικό που δεν απομακρύνεται πολύ από τα αγαπημένα γοτθικά μοτίβα, με κλιμακούμενη ένταση, έναν ήρωα μοναχικό βιβλιοφάγο και εξερευνητή που η περιέργειά του τον στέλνει πέρα από τα καθι
John Cesarone
Feb 17, 2016 John Cesarone rated it really liked it
HPL’s first published story as an adult. Structured as his typical narrated first-person confessional tale, but unusual in that the narrator actually tells us his name up front! But there is a good reason: his name appearing at various places in the story is a key part of the plot. Anyway, the narrator is in an asylum, relating how he grew up fascinated with death, and in particular with a tomb in the woods near where he grew up. He believes that he entered the tomb every night, and cavorted wit ...more
Ameera Talal
May 07, 2016 Ameera Talal rated it really liked it
" ... lacking the fellowship of the living, he inevitably draws upon the companionship of things that are not, or are no longer, living."

Because it is way more interesting to abandon the living and dwell among the spirits of the dead. We only ought to pay attention and listen carefully, and maybe we'll hear their faint whispers calling and seeking company....
لافكرفت ليس له تقدير كبير في بلادنا.. فقد اشتريت هذا الكتاب الذي يحتوي على ربع اعماله بخمسة جنيهات (نصف دولار)من سور الازبكية بحالة ممتازة..احتضنت الكتاب بجشع..وتاكدت من السعر بخبث..و دفعت وركضت بعيدا..
و زاد اعتقادي انه اديب مجهول لدى كثيرين رغم انه من اهم رواد الرعب الحديث..
يحتوي الكتاب على مجموعته الأولى من القصص القصيرة والطويلة.. و بالطبع كلها تم كتابتها بضمير المتكلم كالعادة..كأنها مذكرات
وفي قصته الأولى ككاتب "المقبرة " نجد تفسيرا لجنون شاب مهووس بقبر قديم ..و مصمم على أن يدفن فيه ..و كيف
Javier Muñoz albornoz
Jul 02, 2016 Javier Muñoz albornoz rated it really liked it
"Las personas de miras más amplias saben que no existe una gran diferencia entre lo real y lo irreal; que todas las cosas se manifiestan por virtud de los delicados e individuales sentidos físicos y mentales que nos hacen conscientes de ellas."

*Hyde sacado de El extraño caso del doctor Jekyll y el señor Hyde
Aug 05, 2016 Victoria rated it really liked it
This story gave me chills.
Midnight and in complete darkness, perfect atmosphere to read something of H.P Lovecraft
Chris Purser
I liked this story, I found it very interesting.
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Howard Phillips Lovecraft, of Providence, Rhode Island, was an American author of horror, fantasy and science fiction.

Lovecraft's major inspiration and invention was cosmic horror: life is incomprehensible to human minds and the universe is fundamentally alien. Those who genuinely reason, like his protagonists, gamble with sanity. Lovecraft has developed a cult following for his Cthulhu Mythos, a
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“It is an unfortunate fact that the bulk of humanity is too limited in its mental vision to weigh with patience and intelligence those isolated phenomena, seen and felt only by a psychologically sensitive few, which lie outside its common experience.” 1 likes
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