First published in the September and October 1821 issues of the London Magazine and as a book the following year, the Confessions of an English Opium-Eater established Thomas De Quincey (1785–1859) as a pre-eminent English writer of the Romantic and early Victorian periods. As his best known work which showcases his characteristic “impassioned prose”, the Confessions combines mundane autobiographical events and visionary fantasies in a vivid, often digressive manner. De Quincey’s personal account of the effects of “a seventeen years’ use, and an eight years’ abuse of [opium’s] powers” (75) on his intellectual and imaginative faculties has influenced generations of writers and artists and has made the book a subject of social and literary controversy to this day.
Citation: Black, Joel. "Confessions of an English Opium Eater". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 27 April 2012 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=9768, accessed 09 December 2023.]