The Haunted House

The Haunted House

Pliny The Younger (62—II3 A.D.)

The Letters of Pliny the Younger (known in Latin as C. Plinius Caecilius Secundus) give a pleasant and varied picture of Roman life at a time when the satirists were depicting it in lurid hues. Pliny was a gentleman of refinement who found time, in spite of his career as a lawyer and a high government official, to write many letters to his friends, with a view, as we happen to know, to publication. Several of these letters are neither more nor less than short stories. The Haunted House is simply the recital of an incident in a letter to his friend Sura, and is one of the best of the ancient ghost stories. Needless to say, it is a type that has been used time and again.

The text is from an early English translation, and comprises Letter 27 of the Seventh Book. There is no title in the original.

The Haunted House

There was at Athens a mansion, spacious and commodious, but of evil repute and dangerous to heal