Edgar Allen Poe, the writer of terrorsome short stories

Essay by Amit ShahHigh School, 12th gradeA+, March 1997

download word file, 10 pages 3.6

Edgar Allan Poe, is the author of terrorsome short stories such as: 'The Fall of

the House of Usher,' 'The Masque of the Red Death,' 'The Pit and the Pendulum,' 'The

Tell-Tale Heart,' 'The Black Cat,' 'The Premature Burial,' 'The Imp of the Perverse,'

'The Cask of Amontillado,' and 'Hop-Frog'. Poe earned his place as a major figure in

Literature for his tales of the bizarre and fantastic (Harris 491). The gruesome plots,

suffering protagonists, and Gothic settings stem from Poe's own fears, dreams and


'Poe lived a brief and tragic life: a life whose legend has often proved an

overpowering influence on the critical reception of his work' (Harris 491). Poe was born

on 1809 in Boston. Poe's mother died on 1811 and his father had abandoned him. He

was adopted by a family and given the benefits of wealth and education. Poe was a

gambler, and an intolerant alcoholic, which eventually caused him to be removed from

several prestigious schools and caused a hiatus between the family.

Poe had a series of

romances during his life but none lasted long. Poe was in constant financial jeopardy

because of bad business decisions he made. His only source of income was the short

stories he wrote.

The gruesome plots, suffering protagonists, and Gothic settings in Poe's short

stories are a direct result of Poe's tragic life.

'One reason may have been his apparent fear of the dark. Susan Archer Talley

Weiss, who knew Poe in his later years, said that a friend of hers who had gone to

school with Poe spoke of 'his timidity in regard to being alone at night, and his

belief in and fear of the supernatural. She had heard Poe say, when grown, that

the most horrible thing he could imagine...