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1939 Edgar Allen Poe The Premature Burial Vintage Print

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Some consider the illustrations in Tales of Mystery and Imagination by Edgar Allan Poe to put this book in the top ten from the Golden Age of Illustration. Others think these haunted faces and fragile silhouettes are unhinged and demonic. No matter what you think as you look at this dramatic black and white print “Deep, Deep, and For Ever, into Some Ordinary and Nameless Grave” you have to appreciate the genius of illustrator Harry Clarke. Tales of Mystery and Imagination was originally published in 1919 to record sales and critical success; the book went through numerous Harrap editions including a 1923 enlarged edition when the eight color plates were added. This print is from a 1939 edition published by Tudor Publishing Co. of New York. This illustration is from the story The Premature Burial.

Harry Clarke (1889 – 1931) was born in Dublin, the son of a craftsman, who went on to become a leading figure in the Irish Arts and Crafts Movement. He went to school in Belvedere College in Dublin and by his late teens he was studying stained glass at the Dublin Art School. He left for London looking for work as a book illustrator but also became the creator of both religious and secular stain glass windows. While book illustration paid the early bills, stained glass was his career. Unfortunately, ill health plagued both him and his brother, both died within a year of each other – Harry second in 1931 of tuberculosis while trying to recuperate in Switzerland.

This beautiful print uses lines and stippling to create an amazing amount of detail to convey the meaning of the very unusual tales of Edgar Alan Poe. You could spend hours trying to find the hidden details. The plate was produced on medium grade cream paper. The image is as sharp and clear as when it was published 70+ years ago.

The rough edge from the binding has been removed but that is the only "altering" that has taken place (the interior edge is trimmed). Prints are carefully mounted on mats to simplify framing after purchase and to protect the print during display and or shipment. All mat materials are acid and lignin free, the actual print is not archival safe. The original book measured approximately 8 x 10-1/2” but the book plate is being sold custom matted to fit in a 9x12 standard frame.

Vintage book illustrations are always the perfect decorating choice for any room in your home or office. They also make great gifts for any occasion – a birthday, a new baby, wedding, housewarming, or special holiday - as they are always unique and unusual. Browse our store for other antique illustrations in this series to complete a matching wall grouping or for other areas of interest.

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1939 Edgar Allen Poe The Premature Burial Vintage Print


  • Vintage item from the 1930s
  • Materials: original vintage book illustration, mat, cardstock
  • Ships worldwide from United States
  • Feedback: 120 reviews
  • Favorited by: 4 people