The Raven By Edgar Allan Poe And Dover Beach By Matthew Arnold: An Analysis

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The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe and Dover Beach by Matthew Arnold: An Analysis

The Raven Dover Beach and Use of Figurative Languages, Theme, Symbolism and Rhythm

The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe uses figurative language. In the poem we see that Pallas Athena, Greek goddess of war and wisdom; The Night's Plutonian Shore, a reference to the underworld in Roman Mythology; Balm of Gilead, a reference to the book of Job in the Old Testament; The raven, a mystical mythological bird.

The Raven is a melancholy poem, and what could be more melancholy than a raven, a pitch black, magical bird that portends death, arriving from Pluto's realm in the underworld. The bust of Pallas on which the raven alights adds to the ancient feel to the narrator's tale. His question, "Is there balm in Gilead?" alludes to Job from the Old Testament, who suffered the insufferable and hints at the internal pain suffered by the narrator on account of Lenore's death.

The poem "The Raven," (Thomas, pp. 350-56) by Edgar Allen Poe uses numerous symbols to help illustrate the physiological disintegration of the narrator's rational mind, due to the death of his wife Lenore. Poe provides many symbols which express that the narrator is in a significant, transitional period of his life. The period concerns his struggle between depression and normality. One example, is when the narrator begins the poem by stating "[o]nce upon a midnight dreary." The word midnight reflects a transition of day and night, which helps to symbolize his dilemma of depression versus normal life (Thomas, pp. 350-56). The word "dreary" stresses his feeling of hopeless depression. Additionally, Poe uses other subtle references to depict this state of mind. Some of these include mention of a "bleak December," and the "nightly shore." Bleak December represents the darkest and final month of the year, preceding a new beginning. Similarly, the nightly shore symbolizes his desired transformation from darkness to light, and from uncertain seas to solid ground.

One of the major symbols in this poem is the Raven itself. This "ebony" bird symbolizes darkness, hopelessness, and despair. When the narrator asked the raven questions about his ability to overcome depression, and to learn the fate of his wife, it consistently answered "nevermore." An example of these questions is when he asked if there is any type of nepenthe to forget his lost Lenore. By being told "nevermore" to this and similar questions, the narrator began to understand that his wife would never return. and he would never be free of sadness and pain. At the end of the poem the raven "still is sitting, still is sitting." This reveals a lasting message of despair that the storytelling still never be in peace. The poem "The Raven," by Edgar Allen Poe depicts a man's physiological state of mind during his transition from depression back into normal life. This is reflected through numerous symbols including, subtle references and the raven itself (Poe, pp. 364-69).

"Dover Beach" is a melancholic poem. Matthew Arnold uses the means ...
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