English Literature
Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe

Shiken premium Upgrade Banner

The Unique Influence of Edgar Allan Poe in "Blackbird" and "The Raven"

Looking at the works of "Blackbird", the iconic Beatles song, and "The Raven", the renowned poem by masterful writer Edgar Allan Poe, one can easily spot the stark differences between the two pieces. While one is beloved by many for its melodic tune, the other is a haunting exploration of death and grief. Poe, despite his reputation, was highly revered in the world of literature and made a lasting impact through his unique writing style.

Born on January 19, 1809, in Boston, Massachusetts, Poe's life was shrouded in mystery and sorrow. His parents, both actors, passed away during his childhood, and he was taken in by the wealthy Allan family. Despite his privileged upbringing, Poe's relationship with his foster father was strained, causing him to leave the family at the young age of 18.

With a passion for writing, Poe briefly attended the University of Virginia. However, his gambling habits and heartache over his lost love, Sarah Elmira Royster, led him to drop out and join the United States Army. After leaving the army, Poe pursued a career in writing and published his first book of poetry, "Tamerlane and Other Poems", in 1827.

Throughout his life, Poe experienced various struggles and moved to different cities. He eventually settled in Baltimore with his aunt and cousin, whom he later married. During this time, Poe produced some of his most famous works, including "The Raven" and "The Murders in the Rue Morgue", which is considered the first modern detective story.

Despite his literary achievements, Poe's personal life was filled with tragedy, including the loss of his wife, Virginia, to tuberculosis. Additionally, he battled with his own mental and physical health, leading to his untimely death at the age of 40. The circumstances surrounding his death remain a mystery, adding to the enigmatic aura that surrounded Poe throughout his life.

Despite the melancholic and eerie themes in Poe's works, he is credited with creating the detective fiction genre and has left a lasting impact on horror, mystery, and science fiction writing. His legacy lives on through his thought-provoking and chilling tales that continue to captivate readers even today.

The Haunting Genius of Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe was a man deeply entranced by the theme of lost love, as seen in his renowned poem “Annabel Lee”(1849). The first stanza paints a vivid picture of a man mourning the loss of his beloved since childhood.

It's no surprise that Poe's fascination with death and its connection to beauty was a recurring theme in his works. His personal tragedies, including the deaths of his mother, foster mother, and wife, Virginia Clemm, may have heavily influenced his writing.

Poe's Unforgettable Words

Poe's stories and poems often have an eerie and unusual quality that captivates readers. One of his most famous quotes, “There is no exquisite beauty without some strangeness in the proportion,” as seen in the short story “Ligeia” (1838), perfectly captures this essence.

The author often intertwined beauty with macabre and dark concepts, such as death. In his essay “The Philosophy of Composition” (1846), he famously stated, “The death of a beautiful woman is, unquestionably, the most poetical topic in the world.”

However, beyond his dark and mysterious tales, Poe also had a romantic side, often exploring themes of lost love. In a letter to his aunt, Maria Clemm, he wrote, “I was never really insane except upon occasions when my heart was touched,” in 1849.

Surprising Tidbits about Edgar Allan Poe

  • Poe's iconic character, Auguste Dupin, reportedly inspired Sir Arthur Conan Doyle to create Sherlock Holmes.
  • “The Murders in the Rue Morgue,” one of Poe's short stories, served as the basis for the character of Sherlock Holmes.
  • In his early years, Poe wrote under the pseudonym Henri Le Rennet and signed his first poetry collection, Tamerlane and Other Poems, as “by a Bostonian.”
  • Poe's third volume of poetry, Poems (1831), was made possible by financial support from his fellow cadets at West Point, to whom the book is dedicated.
  • Despite his reputation for writing dark tales, Poe also dabbled in comedies and experimented with irony, satire, and dark humor.
  • There are over 26 published theories about the circumstances surrounding Poe's death.

The Legacy of Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe was a visionary author who left a lasting impact on literature and popular culture. He was born on January 19, 1809, in Boston, Massachusetts, and his untimely death on October 7th, 1849, at the age of 40, left behind a lasting legacy.

Poe's contributions to various genres, including science fiction, horror, Gothic literature, and detective fiction, solidified his place in literary history.

Some of his most famous works, such as “The Fall of the House of Usher” (1839), “The Murders in the Rue Morgue” (1841), “Masque of the Red Death” (1842), and “The Tell-Tale Heart” (1843), continue to intrigue and inspire readers today with their gripping tales of madness and mystery.

The Raven and Other Iconic Poe Poems

Poe's work is not limited to stories; his poetry is equally powerful and enduring. “The Raven” (1845) is one of his most iconic poems, and its influence can be seen in various forms of media. Other notable works include “To Helen” (1831) and “Annabel Lee” (1849).

The Mysterious Death of Edgar Allan Poe

The circumstances surrounding Poe's death remain a mystery to this day. He was found disoriented and intoxicated at a bar in Baltimore, admitted to a hospital, and later passed away at the young age of 40. The cause of death was officially diagnosed as inflammation of the brain, a common explanation for unknown deaths during that time.

A Master of Multiple Genres

Poe's writing genius transcended multiple genres, making him a versatile and unparalleled author. His works in horror and Gothic fiction continue to influence modern storytelling, and he is also credited with inventing the detective fiction genre, which remains immensely popular today.

The Early Days of Edgar Allan Poe

The life of Edgar Allan Poe was filled with sorrow and loss, from his mother and foster mother to his brother and wife, all passing away. This tragic series of events greatly impacted his writing, leading to his fascination with death and the eerie.

In Summary

The legacy of Edgar Allan Poe lives on through his timeless literary works that continue to captivate and intrigue readers of all generations. He will forever be remembered as a visionary and a master of the written word.

Join Shiken For FREE

Gumbo Study Buddy

Explore More Subject Explanations

Try Shiken Premium
for Free

14-day free trial. Cancel anytime.
Get Started
Join 20,000+ learners worldwide.
The first 14 days are on us
96% of learners report x2 faster learning
Free hands-on onboarding & support
Cancel Anytime