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Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Q - Peter Quint & Queen of Spades - Fictional Phantoms #AtoZChallenge 2016


Welcome to my Fictional Phantoms, day 17 and to the letter Q. Now I had trouble thinking of Qs to begin with, but then found two phantoms, one whom many of you will know, the other, I suspect fewer with know about. I hadn't heard of her until I went searching :).

Peter Quint (The Turn of the Screw)

Peter Wyngarde in The Innocents
Peter Quint is a character from Henry James' novel The Turn of the Screw. In it he is very simply the root of all evil.

Peter Quint was a servant of the master of Bly, a large country house. However, in life he thought himself above his station and was a corrupting force. He is handsome but dastardly.

He was having a sexual relationship with the governess, Miss Jessel, of Flora and Miles, the niece and nephew of the owner of Bly. He also took control of the house when the master was away.

Quint and Jessel both died, but they are far from gone. Quint still has much influence over Miles, even though the boy denies it over and over. However, Quint was the reason Miles was expelled from school and Quint continues to use the boy, even as the new governess tries to protect him.

Quint will never let Miles go, with tragic consequences.

Queen of Spades (Pushkin)

The Queen is actually a Countess who is 87 years old. She knows the secret of the winning cards, three cards which when bet upon will allow the person making the bet to win a fortune.

Hermann, an officer in the engineers in the Imperial Russian Army, learns of the secret and threatens the old lady with a pistol to make her tell him the truth. She dies of fright.

At her funeral Hermann see the countess open her eyes and later her ghost appears to him. She tells him the three cards: Three, seven, ace. Then she orders him to play once each night and then to marry her young ward.

Hermann does so and on the first and second night he wins, but on the third he find he has bet on the Queen of Spades and loses everything. The Queen looks almost exactly like the Countess and winks at him, at which point he runs in terror and goes mad. All he will ever say from then on is: "Three, Seven, Ace. Three, Seven, Queen."

The Countess got her own back and saved her ward from a loveless marriage.

Do you think there could be ghosts out there that are pure evil? How about ghosts that return to right wrongs done them in their life?


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My Other Blogs
I am sharing blogging duties with my sister, Sophie, on two other blogs for the AtoZ as well :

And Sophie also has her own blog in the AtoZ too:

~*~
Other People's Blogs
Don't forget to check out the other participant in this years AtoZChallenge. Click on the image to visit the main site and see the full list.

39 comments:

  1. I suspect that there must be ghosts out there that are pure evil - the news seems to report on people who are pure evil, so why not ghosts!

    Tracy (Black Boots, Long Legs)

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    1. Good point, well made - let's hope they are mostly frustrated in their evil.

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  2. Gosh, I hope not. There's too much evil without the dead causing more havoc!

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  3. I really just don't want there to be ghosts out there!

    betty

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  4. I tend to think that unless the circumstances of death changes someone's mind or shapes their thoughts that ghosts would be like their former human selves but without the usual constraints, so a kind person would remain kind etc.

    Mars xx
    @TrollbeadBlog from
    Curling Stones for Lego People

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    1. Horror movies would not tend to agree, but I think your way is better :)

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  5. I don't believe in actual ghosts, but I do think houses can pick up a miasma from previous events. Not sure why.

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    1. Energy goes on so it would not be surprising if places could record the past in some way.

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  6. I'd prefer to think that ghosts are coming back to right wrongs, rather than just being pure evil. I haven't read "Turn of the Screw" before. I think I'll put it on my reading list.

    Cheers - Ellen | http://thecynicalsailor.blogspot.com/2016/04/q-is-for-q-flag-nancy-drew-investigates.html

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    1. I have to admit I haven't read it either, but I've seen adaptations :)

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  7. Saved her ward from a loveless marriage? But didn't she order the bad guy to marry her? Hmm.

    I like the first one. I may have even read that story. It reminds me a lot of a side story in Peter Straub's Ghost Story.

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    1. Um, that did occur to me, but not having read the original, only the synopsis, I assume it was all part of the trick of getting him to do what she wanted - or it was all about saving the dear girl's honour so she could marry someone else afterwards.

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  8. So many ghosts I've never even heard of! I need to check these out!

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    1. Honestly, Q ghosts didn't leap to mind for me either :) - I had to go looking for these.

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  9. Those are some spooky ghost stories! Mine are not at exciting.

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  10. The Turn of the Screw is one of the great ghost stories of all time. My ghosts are all so angst-ridden and full of longing. I think that's how ghosts should be!!!

    @Kathleen01930
    Meet My Imaginary Friends
    #AtoZchallenge

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    1. I think all ghosts should have a reason for staying, but I don't think that always has to be angst :) Angst is always good for motivation of course :)

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  11. We had to read Turn of the Screw when I first took an English class in the US, but I never got through it all the way... The Pushkin story is cool, though :)

    @TarkabarkaHolgy from
    The Multicolored Diary
    MopDog

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    1. I have to admit I've never read it - I have just seen the movie adaptation :)

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  12. Oh! It's been so long since I read The Turn of the Screw. I'll have to suggest it to my library classics book club.


    @mirymom1 from
    Balancing Act

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  13. I always wanted to read Turn Of The Screw only because it's Henry James and I like the title. Had no idea what it was about mind you :)

    Fran
    @FranClarkAuthor
    Writing Women’s Fiction

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    1. LOL - an illustration of what a good title can do, clearly :)

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  14. I'll have to read Turn of the Screw. That sounds like a truly interesting one. :)

    The Immarcescible Word

    Frox'n'Fox

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    1. I suspect there is a reason it is used in many an English class :)

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  15. I didn't know that was the story of the Turn of the Screw. Sounds really creepy.

    Susan Says

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    1. I have to admit I've only ever seen the movie :)

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  16. Yeah there are really bad spirits out there. I believe there are angels and demons. Explains a lot of what's going on in our world.

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    1. I'm more inclined to believe human beings create their own evil, but it unfortunately amounts to the same thing.

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  17. If the ghosts weren't all in the new governess's head, that is. That's how I read the story, at any rate.

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    1. I have to admit to not having read the book :) only seen the movie and a long time ago at that. Shows a good book when it can be interpreted different ways.

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  18. I love ghosts that come back to right wrongs. Probably my favorite in film is in the Stir of Echoes starring Kevin Bacon. Love that movie.
    And Ghost is a classic one too. Nothing like your phantoms here, though, which are very interesting indeed!

    Michele at Angels Bark

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    1. I love Stir of Echoes - we watched it again only the other Sat when we were with friends who hadn't seen it.

      Ghost is definitely a good 'un too - that will be coming up for W :)

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  19. I love ghosts that come back to right wrongs. Probably my favorite in film is in the Stir of Echoes starring Kevin Bacon. Love that movie.
    And Ghost is a classic one too. Nothing like your phantoms here, though, which are very interesting indeed!

    Michele at Angels Bark

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  20. Peter Quint always scares me - Turn of the Screw is a great ghost story from one of the masters.

    Never read Pushkin's short story and probably should - so just added it to my Goodreads and Amazon TO READ pile.

    I've seen Tchaikovsky's opera based on the short though.

    https://rolandclarke.com/2016/04/20/q-for-quintessential-atozchallenge/

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  21. I need to put the Turn of the Screw on my reading list.

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