I recently read "The Cask of Amontillado" for pleasure, and I found this passage:
He had a weak point –this Fortunato –although in other regards he was a man to be respected and even feared. He prided himself on his connoisseurship in wine. Few Italians have the true virtuoso spirit. For the most part their enthusiasm is adopted to suit the time and opportunity, to practise imposture upon the British and Austrian millionaires. In painting and gemmary, Fortunato, like his countrymen, was a quack, but in the matter of old wines he was sincere. In this respect I did not differ from him materially; –I was skilful in the Italian vintages myself, and bought largely whenever I could.
I found it most peculiar that Poe followed a semicolon with a space and then an em-dash. It seemed natural and made sense.
I've never seen this style of punctuation in any other literature I've read. Is this something that is okay to use in similar situations? What's the consensus on this usage?