Unconscious - Romantic Unconscious: Dreams, Souls and Metaphysics

Author: Thomas de Quincey

Title: Suspiria de Profundis (1845): 'The Palimpsest'


Pages: Introduction |  1  |  2  |  


This very famous extract from de Quincey’s Suspiria de Profundis, known as ‘The Palimpsest’ is taken from Jenny Bourne Taylor and Sally Shuttleworth, ed, Embodied Selves: An Anthology of Psychological Texts 1830-1890 (Oxford University Press: 1998). As with his earlier Confessions of an English Opium Eater (1821), Suspiria de Profundis, a collection of essays and fragments, deals in many instances with the more chaotic reaches of the mind, with dreams and hallucinations. Here, in apocalyptic fashion, he explores the notion that the mind retains all its memories which are ‘not dead, but sleeping’ and can be revealed through opium, or in the moment of death.

Please select below to view scanned pages from 'The Palimpsest':

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