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At the age of 19 Thomas De Quincey wrote this opium-induced revery
01.22.2013
07:20 am

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Thomas De Quincy


 
While under the influence of laudanum (tincture of opium), a young and very stoned Thomas De Quincey put pen to paper and attempted to capture the elusive moment:

In a clock-case housed in a warm chamber of a spacious English mansion (inevitably as being English, so beautifully clean, so admirably preserved, [noise there is none, dust there is none, neither moth nor worm doth corrupt] how sweet it is to lie! – If thieves break through and steal, they will not steal a mummy; or not, unless they mistake the mummy for an eight-day clock. And if fire should arise, or even if it should descend from heaven is there not a Phoenix Office, able to look either sort of fire (earthly or heavenly) in the face ... Mummy or anti-Mummy, Skeleton or Anti-Skeleton, the Phoenix soars higher above both, and flaps her victorious wings in utter defiance of all that the element of fire can accomplish—making it her boast to ride in the upper air high above all malice from earthly enemies….

Bonhams Fine Books And Manuscripts in San Francisco was offering De Quincy’s ode to O for sale but it appears to have been sold. The expected going price was between $800-1200.
 
Via Booktryst

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment