Annabel Lee

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 12th grade October 2001

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Annabel Lee was finished in May of 1849. Edgar Allan Poe distributed a few copies of this poem to his friends and included it in some of lectures before his death. Poe sold the poem with other pieces of his work to "Sartains Union Magazine of Literature and Art", but it wasn't published until two days after Poe died. "The New York Daily Times" was the first to publish this piece on October 9, 1849. This poem is one of Poe's last completed works.

Many woman claim that Poe wrote this poem about them, but most people agree that this was written in memory of Edgar Allan Poe's deceased wife, Virginia, who died two years earlier of tuberculosis. Poe and Virginia were never apart and never seen fighting, but there came a time when Poe was playing the piano and Virginia was singing along until she began coughing and coughed up a small amount blood.

Having seen this before with his mother and his guardian, Poe began feeling helpless because his beloved wife was dying of tuberculosis and there was nothing he could do to help her. At this time Poe began working on Annabel Lee for "his darling, his darling, his life, and his bride". (Taken from the last stanza of Annabel Lee) The poem begins by mentioning a "kingdom by the sea". To me, this means that their marriage was perfect and filled with happiness. Poe writes about Annabel Lee calling her his maiden, which reinforces the fact that Annabel Lee and Virginia are the same person. Poe continues to say that "this maiden she lived with no other thought than to live and be loved by me". This means that Virginia lived for him and Poe lived for her. Due to this feeling, when she...