Please explain ineasy terms "The Pit and The Pendulum : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread

We are having trouble understanding the story in our high school class of English Lit. Can you help by explaning it to me in easy to understand terms? I have never used a lot of these words in today's language.

-- Anonymous, February 06, 2002


Well, from what I've read it's about a guy being tied down on a table and a blade swinging over him. The blade goes over the region of his heart and he does get cut at the end of this fearful packed moment. The room is narrow so even if he does escape he has a very slim chance of getting out of that room. After having some fun with the rats, he escapes and for the moment he was free. From what I figured he had about 12-15 swings before it killed him and at the rate it was going that was about a minute or so. Poe describes what's going on very well. so he must have had quite an adventure.

-- Anonymous, February 06, 2002

K, to put it in a few words, he was captured by the inquisition and put in a dark dungeon. THe purpose was for him to fall in to the pit and kill himself, but he discovered it accidentally, almost falling in, but no quite and so the initial purposed was evaded. Next he is tied to a table with a pendulum swinging above him. Just before he was cut in half he thought that all the rats would eat his body when he died, so why not play dead see what happens. He did this and the rats swarmed over him and eventually ate through the straps tying him to the table and he got free and escaped certain doom. Next, the floors and walls heated incredibly in an attempt for him to throw himself into the pit, choosing that fate over dying cooked. He stayed at the pit's mouth crouched and crying. Finally the cell started getting smaller. Two angels got smaller while to larger. Think of a cardboard box without top or bottom being flattened out (don't know how clear I am). The purpose was to inevitably push him into the pit. But, alas, at the last moment the inquisition was beaten and he was rescued by some guy just before he fell into the pit. Hope this helped, feel free to email me if you need any more help. -Robert

-- Anonymous, February 13, 2002

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