Hop-Frog........any symbolism or irony i dont know about??

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i read the story and it seemed to be pretty straight foward...he cant take it any more so he flips out. Eight guys end up dead because they always made fun of him.

-- Anonymous, May 17, 2001


You are one big idoit. This story was about slaves and how Poe wanted to do to people who made fun of him and his work.


-- Anonymous, May 17, 2001

I don't know if you have access to other questions about Hop Frog on this site, but if you want to get beyond the immediate tale there are a few extra thing. The effect of the story on the immediate level is indeed the most important goal for Poe. In this particular work late in his life, he is also grinding some personal axes(besides teeth).

He makes obvious comaprisons between characters in the story and in his life. The ministers are the inferior writers who torment Poe(Hop Frog)who though more talented has spent his time relegated to an inferior role. he critThe dwarf criticizes their works exactly as Poe did his contemporaries.Trippetta(could be Virginia, or more symbolically his inner Ideal of Beauty, his soul)is insulted by wine tossed on her face. Since Poe was drinking all too often during his wife's fatal illness, is this a rage against the world that ruined him with drink? Who miught be the King? Publisher, public, critic?

Many works of Poe are alluded to(orangutang from the "Rue Morgue" which was a hint of murder to come,the poem "The Haunted Palace", "Masque of the Red Death", the jester in "The Cask of Amontillado" the wife in "The Black Cat" etc. with elements even more grotesque and a kind of reversal of roles. eg. The jester in this story is the murderer not the victim.

The tone itself is a bitter over the top "last performance" of these tales which were popular but did not earn him either much money or respect. Note: Poe continued with other stories but perhaps was looking to accomplish something different, something to express his outrage and conquer the literary world.

Personally, and this is just my idea, I see some allusion to Dante's Inferno, placing his enemies in Hell and escaping it(by ascending the monstrous furry hide of Lucifer). Dante being a medieval poet, some of the theology and numerology, the circular room and dome, Dante's epic being considered crude and grotesque by Poe's contemporaries... at least food for thought. But the immediate effect makes or breaks the story and this one is brutally careless of the artistry that made his earlier tales work on the mind and emotions. Juts undisguised personal vitriol and shock- at least on the surface.

-- Anonymous, May 17, 2001

In addition without so many typos: Not to belabor the obvious, but the idea that this is a joke- a last joke- fairly screams off the page. He even refers to "Dr.Tar and Feathers," his comic story of madmen disguised as doctors of the asylum who attack the deceived guest. The topsy turvy reversal theme, the bitterness, the revenge, the self-pity, ensure this is no more funny than it was meant to be a pure horror tale. It seems to be a last salvo, in-your-face satire with little respect for itself as fiction- and little concerned with the reader's acceptance. As a physical joke it is horrible, just as Poe considered his rivals' works terrible. As a more refined joke, he adds all those symbol replay reversals which you might consider very clever and philosophical or just wildly gratuitous- and leaves us all on the ball room floor staring up. Just an opinion.

-- Anonymous, May 18, 2001

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