Edgar Allen Poe's Symbolism Of Death In "The Fall Of The House Of Usher"



Death is defined as, "The termination or extinction of something"
(American Heritage Dictionary). Edgar Allen Poe uses this description in "The
Fall of the House of Usher" in different ways. Poe's intention when writing
"The Fall of the House of Usher" was not to present a moral, lesson, or truth to
the reader; he was simply trying to bring forth a sense of terror to the reader.
Poe's mind works this way, and critics believe this statement, especially when
related to this story.
Edgar Allen Poe was born in Boston on January 19, 1809. His life was
filled with tragedies that started when he was ten months old and until he died
at age forty. These tragedies might be the answer to why ...

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of Romanticism, "The Fall of the
House of Usher", falls into the Gothic category. "It is usually admired for its
‘atmosphere' and for its exquisitely artificial manipulation of Gothic claptrap
and decor"(Abel, 380).
Bringing forth the symbolism of death is a major part of this writing.
All of the characters in "The Fall of the House of Usher" are linked to death;
by physical objects or by other people. "There are no symbols of absolute good"
(Abel, 382).
The physical aspect of the House of Usher symbolizes death, in the
chain of events, during the story. Even Poe's description of the house has
deadly characteristics. Poe describes the house as having "eye-like windows"
and being covered by "minute fungi…hanging in a fine tangled web-work from the
eaves (fungi eats off the dead remains of other organisms); a barely perceptible
fissure, which, extending from the roof of the building in front, made its way
down the wall in a zigzag direction, until it ...

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strangeness of her disease that
Roderick feared that they would steal her body for pathologic reasons.
Poe uses this whole scenario to show that Roderick really cared for his
sister. It was as though they were one being, relying on each other for life; "—
a brother, his twin sister, and their incredibly ancient house all sharing a
single soul and meeting one common dissolution at the same moment"(Lovecraft,
380). Once Madeline died, Roderick had lost part of himself. Madeline was his
connection in the human "realm". He knew that his love would eventually kill
her, and it did. They loved without any resistance and eventually dragged each
other to death. "For the Holy Ghost says you ...

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"Edgar Allen Poe's Symbolism Of Death In "The Fall Of The House Of Usher"." Essayworld.com. May 1, 2007. Accessed October 21, 2018. http://www.essayworld.com/essays/Edgar-Allen-Poes-Symbolism-Death-Fall/64170.
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Added: 5/1/2007 04:22:18 AM
Category: Book Reports
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1661
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