The Harbor-Master: Best Weird Stories of Robert W. Chambers


  • The Classics of Gothic Horror Series
  • Edited by S. T. Joshi
  • 2021
  • 300 pp
  • Paperback: ISBN 9781614983279
  • Cover art by Aeron Alfrey
  • Cover design by Daniel V. Sauer


Published simultaneously with Under Twin Suns: Alternate Histories of the Yellow Sign


This volume presents the best weird fiction of the American writer Robert W. Chambers (1865–1933). Chambers attained celebrity for the enigmatic volume The King in Yellow (1895), and this book reprints several of the most notable tales from that collection, as well as such later volumes as The Maker of Moons (1896), Thye Mystery of Choice (1897), In Search of the Unknown (1904), among others. These stories display the power and strangeness of Chambers’s weird conceptions, making it understandable why his work has exercised so profound an influence on such later writers as H. P. Lovecraft, Karl Edward Wagner, Joseph S. Pulver, Sr., and many other leading figures in the field.



Table of Contents

Introduction, by S. T. Joshi 

The Repairer of Reputations

The Mask

The Yellow Sign

The Demoiselle d’Ys

The Maker of Moons

A Pleasant Evening

Pompe Funèbre

The Messenger

The Harbor-Master

The Carpet of Belshazzar

The Sign of Venus

The Ladies of the Lake





The Classics of Gothic Horror series seeks to reprint novels and stories from the leading writers of weird fiction over the past two centuries or more. Ever since the Gothic novels of the late 18th century, supernatural horror has been a slender but provocative contribution to Western literature. Edgar Allan Poe, Ambrose Bierce, the Victorian ghost story writers, the “titans” of the early twentieth century (Arthur Machen, Algernon Blackwood, Lord Dunsany, M. R. James, H. P. Lovecraft), the Weird Tales writers, and many others contributed to the development and enrichment of weird fiction as a literary genre, and their work deserves to be enshrined in comprehensive, textually accurate editions. S. T. Joshi, a leading authority on weird fiction, has done exactly that in establishing this series. Using scholarly resources honed over decades of wide-ranging research, he has assembled volumes featuring not only the complete weird writings of the authors in question, but exhaustive bio-critical introductions and bibliographical data.