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The Severed Hand

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Author: Wilhelm Hauff
Published: 1869
Language: English
Wordcount: 6,355 / 24 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 71.8
LoC Category: PN
Downloads: 450
Added to site: 2007.09.19 18297
Genre: Short Story

From ''German Tales'' Published by the American Publishers' Corporation

Show Excerpt

experienced involuntarily the deepest sympathy. Dark hair hung down in long plaits, the features were pale, the eyes closed. At first I made an incision into the skin, after the manner of surgeons when amputating a limb. I then took my sharpest knife, and with one stroke cut the throat. But oh, horror! The dead opened her eyes, but immediately closed them again, and with a deep sigh she now seemed to breathe her last. At the same moment a stream of hot blood shot towards me from the wound. I was convinced that the poor creature had been killed by me. That she was dead there was no doubt, for there was no recovery from this wound. I stood for some minutes in painful anguish at what had happened. Had the "red-cloak" deceived me, or had his sister perhaps merely been apparently dead? The latter seemed to me more likely. But I dare not tell the brother of the deceased that perhaps a little less deliberate cut might have awakened her without killing her; therefore I wished to sever the head completely; but once mo

Reader Reviews

Average Rating of 3 from 1 reviews: ***
Lisa Carr

A very peculiar story. The only son of a Turkish perfumer goes to Paris to become a doctor. He does, and gets homesick, so he goes home. Stuff happens, and he goes back to Paris. More stuff happens, and he goes to Italy where he becomes involved in a mystery.
The odd thing is that the mystery doesn't get resolved, which could be okay, except that there's no adventure, and no social commentary, or comment on the human condition. It's a purposeless story of the sort you might hear from a drunk.
The writing is okay, but why was it written?



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