Friday, February 03, 2006

The Purloined Letter

Category:     Gothic

Author:     Edgar Allan Poe

Summary:  THE PURLOINED LETTER presents a petty thievery and deception as the crime. The tale’s mock heroic tone is suggested even by the title’s description of the missing letter not as “stolen” but as “purloined.”  The Prefect of the Parisian police, actually knows the identity of the thief, but the letter itself must be found in order to protect the honor of a lady being blackmailed. Despite an exhaustive search of the culprit’s apartment over a three-month period, the Prefect has not found the document and appeals to Dupin for assistance in the matter.

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