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Four Beasts in One: The Homo-Cameleopard


Edgar Allan Poe was an American short-story writer, poet, critic, and editor who is famous for his cultivation of mystery and the macabre. His tale The Murders in the Rue Morgue initiated the modern detective story, and the atmosphere in his tales of horror is unrivalled in American fiction. His The Raven numbers among the best-known poems in the national literature. Poe was the son of the English-born actress Elizabeth Arnold Poe and David Poe, Jr., an actor from Baltimore. After his mother died in Richmond, Virginia, in 1811, he was taken into the home of John Allan, a Richmond merchant. In Four Beasts in One: The Homo-Cameleopard, in a distant future, two observers come upon the ruined remains of Antioch, Syria. They observe that there numerous domesticated animals, and even that the king himself is a magnificent beast. The only real plot in this story is when the king is chased across the thoroughfare by other animals until he is safe within another building. This story, set in 3830, is interesting in that there are only two characters. One, the narrator, and two, you, the ‘gentle reader’. This story came out of a time period when directly speaking to the reader was still in vogue, so is not entirely strange, but what did catch my attention is that the narrator assumes that the reader is well-educated, and perhaps even more intelligent. You can listen online to free English audiobook “Four Beasts in One: The Homo-Cameleopard” by Edgar Allan Poe on our website.

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