Strange Event in the Life of Schalken the Painter

Strange Event in the Life of Schalken the Painter

The short story originally published as “Strange Adventure in the Life of Schalken the Painter. Being a Seventh Extract from the Legacy of the Late Francis Purcell, P.P. of Drumcoolagh” in Dublin University Magazine (May 1839) is widely recognized as the earliest masterpiece by the Irish novelist, short story writer, and journalist Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu (1814-1873). This original version was reprinted seven years after Le Fanu’s death in The Purcell Papers (London: Bentley, 1880), which was edited (mainly to conform to current English house style in accidentals) by the Le Fanu family friend, Alfred Perceval Graves, with the help of Le Fanu’s younger brother William. Between these two texts of the original version, Le Fanu significantly revised and retitled the tale simply “Schalken the Painter” for his collection Ghost Stories and Tales of Mystery (Dublin: McGlashan, 1851), published by James McGlashan, one of the major Irish publishers of the nineteenth century.

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