Edgar Allan Poe Meets GQ

A new portrait shows the poet in a more flattering light

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Edgar Allan Poe would not grace the covers of GQ magazine if he were still alive today. But a new portrait shows a more charming side of the writer.

On Saturday a small watercolor of Poe will be revealed in Baltimore as part of Poe’s birthday celebration. The portrait shows Poe sitting at a desk with pen and paper in hand. Apparently the mustache is not there and we even catch an attempt at a smile.

The AP describes it in more detail:

Poe sits at a desk with pen and paper in hand, seemingly at the height of his creative powers. His upper lip is clean-shaven, though he sports long, bushy sideburns. And there's the slightest hint of a smile on his face.

"It actually represents Poe as he appeared to his contemporaries -- a handsome, sophisticated young man on the rise," said Cliff Krainik, the owner of the portrait and a Poe scholar.  "The daguerreotypes show him in his rather dissipated state, where he has gone through the difficulties of his life."

This artwork by A.C. Smith is one of a kind. It’s one of just three existing portraits of Poe. The owner plans to sell the picture for $30,000 to $50,000. That’s a conservative estimate according to Krainik. 

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