The Title Of This Essay Is Critical Review Of Symbolism In The Short Story "The Masque Of The Red Death" By Edgar Allen Poe. Includes Endnote And Bibliography

842 words - 4 pages

"The Masque of the Red Death" is an elaborate allegory that combines objects in the story with visual descriptions to give focus to the reader's imagination. In the story, a Price named Properso tries to evade the red death through isolation and seclusion. He hides behind the impenetrable walls of his castellated abbey and lets the world take care of its own. But no walls can stop death because it is unavoidable and inevitable. Visual descriptions in Edgar Allen Poe's short story "The Masque of the Red Death" are used to symbolize death. Poe's use of language and symbolism is shown in his description of the seventh room in the suite, the fire, and the ebony clock. These objects are used to ...view middle of the document...

..3"The seven rooms are lighted from without, and it is only in the seventh room where the color of the windows does not correspond with the color of the room, but instead is a deep blood color through which light illuminates the westernmost chamber of black..."4 The fire was meant to produce a shadowy atmosphere in the west and a favorable one in the east. This is symbolic to the sunrise in the east and sunset in the west because light means life and darkness means death. Poe uses darkness as another visual representation of death."...The details of incident and background [in the story] flash themselves on our imagination with almost painful distinctness."5The ebony clock is another symbolic element in the story. The significance of time in the story is seen in the symbol of the gigantic clock of ebony, which is drapped in black velvet and located in the final room. Although the clock is an object, it quickly takes on human aspects as the author describes it as having a face and lungs from which comes a sound that is "exceedingly musical"6 but "so peculiar"7 that the "dreams are stiff frozen as they stand."8 "...The gigantic ebony clock with the dull, heavy,...

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