An experiment into the sources of the human brain through the mind of a young woman has gone horribly wrong. She has seen the great god Pan and will die giving birth to a daughter. Twenty years later feted society hostess Helen Vaughan becomes the source of much fevered speculation. Many men are infatuated with her beauty, but great beauty has a price, sometimes you have to pay with the only thing you have left. The Great God Pan was a sensation when first published in 1894. Its author, Arthur Machen, was a struggling unknown writer living in London. He had translated Casanova's memoirs and was living on a small inheritance. He immediately became one of the most talked-about writers of the last years of the nineteenth century, while the publication marked the start of his ongoing influence on modern fantasy and horror. Machen's dark imaginings of the reality behind ancient beliefs feature again in the acclaimed, mesmerising short story 'The White People' and the curious tale 'The Shining Pyramid', also in this volume.