Questions about Edgar Allan Poe : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread

1)what is the name of Edgar Allan Poe's most famous poem and what year was it published? 2)Many of Edgar Allan Poe's stories take place in a city abroad. What city is that? 3)What is the main character's name in The Cask of Amontillado? 4)What is the title of the six-verse ballad that is included in the text of The Fall of the House of Usher? 5)What facial feature caused someone to commit murder in The Tell-Tale Heart? 6)What else did Edgar Allan Poe produce besides short storied and poetry that had a world-wide influence on literature?

-- Anonymous, February 18, 2003


Dear Terri,

Let us see if we can answer some of the questions that you have posed regarding Edgar Allan Poe and his work. I will attempt to do this in order:

1) I think that, without a doubt, Edgar Allan Poe's most famous poem, the one that achieved his fame, is "The Raven" (published in 1844).

2) Though it is true to state that many of Edgar Allan Poe's short stories occur, or are set abroad, Poe does not limit himself to a single city. From off the top of my head I can think of many different places which provided setting for Poe's tales: America (naturally) but also England, Italy (Venice), France (Paris and other sites), Spain (Toledo), and a long etc. Also one should note here the many tales in which the location is never pinned down to a specific site, but rather remains mysteriously, and conspiciously, unmentioned.

3) There are two main characters in Poe's tale, "The Cask of Amontillado." These are Fortunato (the rather ironically-named victim), and Montresor (the murderer).

4) The title of the ballad, which has six stanzas, not six verses, is "The Haunted Palace," and may be considered as a work in its own right.

5) The facial feature which drives the narrator to commit the murder in "The Tell-Tale Heart" is, according to him, the old man's eye, which is described as resembling "that of a vulture—a pale blue eye, with a film over it." It is also identified as an "Evil eye" later on in the tale.

6) Apart from his short stories and poetry, Poe also wrote a long work in prose (a full-length novel, or a novella, according to one's definition) entitled "The Narrative of A. Gordon Pym," and also an unfinished drama called "Politian" or "Scenes from Politian," though neither of these are really heavyweight works in worldwide literature. What is perhaps more interesting in terms of literary heritage, is the Literary Criticism (I will cite "The Philosophy of Composition" and "The Poetic Principal" as two of the main pieces, though there are many many more) which Poe wrote, demonstrating a sophisticated and analytical mind which puts Dupin to shame. Moreover, one should not forget other important texts, such as Poe's "Marginalia," or his correspondence (ie written letters, etc.).

Well, there we are. I think this goes some way towards answering your queries. I hope my responses have been helpful.

In all sincerity, and with kindest regards:


-- Anonymous, February 19, 2003

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