Essay on Symbolism Of The Red Death By Edgar Allan Poe

1433 Words Nov 9th, 2015 6 Pages
Symbolism in The Masque of The Red Death

The Masque of the Red Death is a glaringly nightmarish and symbolic tale of the inevitability of death. By some it is described as “a tragedy in the purest classical sense of the word” ("Explanation of: The Masque of the Red Death by Edgar Allan Poe."). Edgar Allen Poe used symbolism to reveal the true nature of the characters and themes of the story. In The Masque of the Red Death, Edgar Allan Poe uses the intense symbolism of the seven chambers to establish the idea that death is inevitable no matter how important one is in society.

Some believe that “red death” was actually tuberculosis because some of the symptoms that Poe used to describe the red death or the same symptoms of tuberculosis. Poe also lost a lot of people to tuberculosis; his mother, his father, his brother, his wife, so it makes sense as to why some people see this as the red death. It also bears a resemblance to the black death, or the bubonic plague, a disease that killed hundreds of millions of people in Europe in the 1700’s. But in the story, Prince Prospero gathered a thousand of his friends and locked them in his secluded abbey. “ Prince Prospero thinks that the "strong and lofty wall" and "gates of iron" can keep the Red Death out of the palace” ("Explanation of: The Masque of the Red Death by Edgar Allan Poe."). The castle was meant to protect them from the disease because Prospero believed that he could overcome death, this shows his arrogance. Poe did,…

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