Reflection of Edgar Allan Poe's Pessimistic Moods in The Raven

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Reflection of Edgar Allan Poe's Pessimistic Moods in The Raven

Throughout literature, an author's works almost always reflect their

mood and character. Edgar Allan Poe was an American writer whose short stories

and poems reflected his pessimistic moods. One of Poe's poems, "The Raven," is

about a raven that flies into the home of a sad and lonely man. This poem best

expresses Poe's sense of despair and gloominess because the literary elements

used in the poem are a constant reference to them.

An example that portrays "The Raven" as a reflection of Poe's despair

and gloominess is the poem's setting. The poem takes place in a haunted house

during a violent storm. For example, in the poem it says, "On this home by

horror haunted," and "..tempest tossed thee here ashore." The time and place of

the poem deliver a feeling of negativity and pessimism to the reader. Poe's use

of a depressing and negative setting for "The Raven" illustrates his despair and


Another example that illustrates the poem as an expression of Poe's mood

is the raven itself. A raven is a large bird of the crow family with lustrous

black feathers and a straight, sharp beak. Poe could have used any bird, however

he wanted the reader to experience the gloom and despondency that he experienced.

Therefore he wrote about a raven.

Finally, Poe's use of assonance throughout the poem also contributed to

the poem's illustration of despair and gloominess. Assonance is the repetition

of vowel sound. For instance, at the end of each stanza it says, "Quoth the

raven, Nevermore," "This is it and nothing more," or a phrase ending with the

word more. The repetition of these sounds emphasize the words that contribute to

the mood of the poem. Nevermore is a negative word meaning never again. The

raven only said this word. Poe emphasizes nevermore because it helps accentuate

the depressed and despaired mood of the poem.
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