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The Mystery of Edgar Allan Poe

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The Mystery of Edgar Allan Poe

What was the mystery of Edgar Allan Poe? Why was he so special? He was special because he helped change poetry by giving it different focuses. Through looking at Edgar Allan Poe's life, we will understand what motivated him to write what he did, what the meaning was behind these works, and how this changed poetry.

Before Edgar Allan Poe, the common belief was that poetry should be about Truth, and that it should impart some morals. Poe disagreed, and strongly felt that poetry was not at all about passing along the Truth. Poetry should be about Beauty, and the excitement of the soul. For Poe, the truth was far too harsh to be included in poetry. The truth for Poe was that life is harsh. Poe was abandoned at a very young age. His father had abandoned his family, and his mother had died by the age of three. From there, his life did not get better. A wealthy merchant family, the Allan?s, unofficially adopted him. With the help of the Allan?s, he received a top-notch education. His early education consisted of boarding schools in England were he learned Latin and French, as well as many other subjects. After his stay in England, Poe came home with an education superior to his peers in America. He continued his education until his enrollment into the University of Virginia. There, due to reasons unknown, John Allan sent him to school with insufficient funds (Meyers 235). He did not have enough money to buy books for the first semester. He had to gamble to earn money enough to buy him clothes and money to live on, since Allan would not send him more money. After one year, Poe had to end his education, being broke and an alcoholic. After this he had many bouts with the army. In b...

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...oe, do not think of him as a sick man who was obsessed with death. Think of him as a man that was tired of the sorrow life was throwing him, who used poetry as only a way to counter this sorrow by catching a glimpse of the Beauty that was divine.

Works Cited

Frank, Frederick S., and Anthony Magistrale. The Poe Encyclopedia. Westport: Greenwood Press, 1997.

Howarth, William L., ed. Twentieth Century Interpretations of Poe?s Tales. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, 1971.

Meyers, Jeffrey. Edgar Allan Poe. New York: Charles Scribner?s Sons, 1992.

Poe, Edgar A. ?The Poetic Principle?, The Works of the Late Edgar Allan Poe, vol.III, 1850, pp. 1-20. http://www.eapoe.org/works/essays/poetprnd.htm.

Quinn, Arthur Hobson. Introduction. The Complete Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe. By Edward H. O?Neill., ed. New York: Barnes and Noble Books,1992.
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