The Raven by Edgar Poe

The researcher has identified that firstly it is necessary to admit that poem’s language, internal rhythms, use of alliteration and archaism lead to a great number of parodies. The poem is characterized by a gothic tenor. It was mentioned that it is easy to remember this poem due to its repeated and varied line “Nevermore”. The poem has a metrical construction which is mesmeric in quality and opening lines are also present in the poem: Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary, Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore, While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a trapping, As of someone gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door. “’Tis some visitor”, I muttered, “tapping at my chamber door. Only this and nothing more.” It is seen that the main meter of “The Raven” is trochaic octameter. It means that the poem consists of lines of eight trocees (trochee is the syllable pair characterized by first strong syllable and last weak one). In the poem, Poe used mainly words which contribute and complement the poem’s atmosphere and poem’s tone: dreary, weary, dying, darkness, stillness, etc. All the verses in the poem are similar in their form and such meter creates the feeling of something stable and permanent, although the words are contrasting as their tensions and anxiety are constantly growing. Some critics mentioned that the poem is the reflection of author’s paranoia.’s paranoia. (Silverman 1992)
The main point of "The Raven" is its melancholic tone due to sound, rhythmic patterns and words’ meanings. In order to reach this musical effect, the writer used internal rhythm when the word in the first line rhythms with the word in the second line and so on. The use of alliteration is also vivid (while, weak, weary).
The possible theme of the poem is the death of a women and the main hero lamented her death. Some critics admit that the prototype of Lenore was Poe’s wife who was really in poor health when the author was working on his poem. (Quinn 1998)
The poem is rather symbolic. Poe used several symbols in order to achieve the highest level of the poem. The most important and significant symbol of the poem is the raven itself. Poe also decided to use the repeated phrase "nevermore", because it would make the poem more effective and outstanding. He complemented this effect by the use of non-reasoning creature who uttered that word. Poe decided not to use a human, because he is able to reason the answer to the questions. It is apparent for the author that all the answers for the asked questions are known. In such a way the author wanted to present self-torture. The first impulses of human are to interpret the sighs which have no meaning at all. The bird is the symbol of death and darkness. It symbolizes the fact that nothing could be returned and nobody could be brought back to life. The raven is the personification of sorrow, sadness and grief, of all negative and depressive feelings peculiar to human. The raven is black and the sorrow is black. (Silverman 1992)
It was mentioned that Poe wanted to use parrot instead of raven for the first time, but this bird isn’t suitable for the dark side of the day. Therefore Poe decided to use the image of raven best suited for poem’s mood, because raven are considered to be birds of ill-omen and melancholy.
One more symbol in the poem is the bust of Pallas. There is a question: why did the raven want to "to perch on the goddess of wisdom" Possibly because the narrator believed that the raven is able to speak from wisdom. The other reason is that in such a way the author could signify his own scholarship. According Poe he used Pallas because of the "sonorousness of the word, Pallas, itself". (Silverman 1992)
There is one more less visible symbol in the poem- the symbol of midnight in the first verse and the used of December in the second one. The use of these symbols is apparent and inevitable, because they symbolize the end something, the end of happy life and even