do you mark me well

vkhu

Senior Member
Vietnamese
It grew louder, I say, louder every moment! — do you mark me well I have told you that I am nervous: so I am.
Context: a man is retelling the tale of his murder. He wants to prove he's not mad, only has exceptional senses due to his excitement. At this point, he's in the same room as his victim, listening to the victim's heartbeat

I don't get the phrase in bold. First, shouldn't there be a punctuation at the end of it? Like "do you mark me well? I have told you [...]"

Secondly, how should I interpret the meaning here? I can see two way to read into it: 1) "Do you hear me well?" and 2) "Do you judge me to be sound of mind now?" but which is it?

Source: The Tell-Tale Heart - Poe's Works | Edgar Allan Poe Museum
 
  • Uncle Jack

    Senior Member
    British English
    "Mark me well" appears often in literature of the period, but is not used in modern English. The meaning is something like "note (this)" or "remember (this)".

    There is no need for punctuation at the end of the phrase as it is followed by a relative clause, where "that" has been omitted, as is common.

    However, there is an oddity with "do you" added for emphasis. While "do" can be added to imperatives in modern English, as can a subject, no modern English speaker would add both. I will trust that the punctuation is correct and it is not a question.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    "Mark me well" appears often in literature of the period, but is not used in modern English. The meaning is something like "note (this)" or "remember (this)".

    There is no need for punctuation at the end of the phrase as it is followed by a relative clause, where "that" has been omitted, as is common.

    However, there is an oddity with "do you" added for emphasis. While "do" can be added to imperatives in modern English, as can a subject, no modern English speaker would add both. I will trust that the punctuation is correct and it is not a question.
    I agree, though I've always heard it defined as "mark my words". Essentially the same thing. It is distinctly dated sounding to me. I would expect to see it in very old literature of some two or three hundred years ago.
     
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