The main themes of Edgar Allan Poe's narrative poem "The Raven" are undying devotion, loss and the lingering grief that cannot be diminished. The poem's narrator, a young man and presumably a student, is mourning the death of his lover, Lenore. Despite his attempts to lessen his grief through his studies and his pondering "many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore," he is wrenched back to his sorrow by a talking raven who repeatedly utters the famous refrain "nevermore," a painful reference to the fact that the narrator will never again be reunited with his beloved Lenore.Know More
In Poe's own words, he decided upon the raven as the poem's primary symbol, because it represented "Mournful and Never-ending Remembrance." The raven further instigates the grieving young man's distress and helps push him further down the path towards what the reader expects will eventually end in madness. By the end of the poem, the narrator appears to realize that the raven is actually his own grief-imprisoned and tortured soul.
"The Raven" first appeared in print and with its authorship attributed to Poe, on January 29, 1845, in the New York Evening Mirror. The publication brought Poe a great deal of fame on both sides of the Atlantic, but little financial success. It has since become known as one of the most famous poems ever written.Learn more about Poetry
In his poem "The Raven" Edgar Allen Poe makes allusions to two famous sources, the Bible and Greek mythology. Poe alludes to Greek mythology by bringing up Pallas Athena and a Plutonian shore. He alludes to the Bible by mentioning seraphim and referencing the balm of Gilead.Full Answer >
Some themes of "The Black Cat" by Edgar Allan Poe include mixed emotions, loyalty, death, transformation, justice, illusions, guilt, relationships and superstition. In the story, a black cat leads the narrator down a path of insanity as a personification of all that he hates. As the narrator falls more into alcoholism, his grip on reality loosens more and, by the end of the story, he is consumed with guilt about the murder of his wife.Full Answer >
Edgar Allen Poe's famous poem "The Raven" has a melancholic tone. This derives from its topic, which is death, and the mournful language of the speaker, who is a lonely man left without his beautiful lover. The speaker's obsessive thoughts about his departed lover are also reflected in the repetition used throughout the text.Full Answer >
Edgar Allen Poe wrote "The Tell-Tale Heart" in order to demonstrate his theory of composition. This theory states that short stories should be relatable, controlled and compressed. According to Poe, short stories should be readable in a single sitting. Because of this, "The Tell-Tale Heart" is only 10 paragraphs long.Full Answer >