The Premature Burial is a horror short story on the theme of being buried alive, written by Edgar Allan Poe and published in 1844 in
The Philadelphia Dollar Newspaper. Fear of being buried alive was common in this period and Poe was taking advantage of the public interest.
In The Premature Burial, the first-person unnamed narrator describes his struggle with "attacks of the singular disorder which physicians have agreed to term catalepsy," a condition where he randomly falls into a death-like trance. This leads to his fear of being buried alive ("The true wretchedness," he says, is "to be buried while alive."). He awakens one morning to find his worst fears realized!
©1844 Works of Edgar Allan Poe (P)1985 Jimcin Recordings