Edgar Allan Poe Essay

2181 words - 9 pages

Edgar Allen Poe You may have seen the compelling work of word-art titled "The Raven" or heard the name "Edgar Allan Poe". But have you ever wondered what drew fame from this extraordinary literary idol of the 19th Century? Edgar Allan Poe was not only the author of great volumes of haunting poetry and chilling short stories. He was a unique and successful writer, editor, scholar and public speaker. His vocabulary and word usage was intense and darkly beautiful. My interest in this compelling and remarkable man was met with information when I began researching him to write this essay. I chose to dedicate the life of this essay to the life, times and writings of Edgar Allan Poe. ...view middle of the document...

He disappeared from the lives of Elizabeth and her two sons, Edgar and his older brother Henry, about a year after Edgar was born. Elizabeth was left a widow when she was still a young mother at only eighteen years old. Then, in 1811, Elizabeth became sick and died of tuberculosis. Back then, this contagious and deadly disease was politely referred to as "Consumption". After her death, Edgar and his older brother were left as orphans. Edgar was then taken to the home of John and Frances Allan. This conservative couple lived in Richmond, Virginia. They were to be Edgar's foster parents. They never legally adopted Edgar, but nevertheless he called John "Pa" and Frances "Ma". In 1812, he was baptized under the name of "Edgar Allan Poe", with John and Frances named as his godparents. In the year of 1815, Edgar left Virginia aboard a ship named the Lothair with John, Frances and Frances's younger sister. They arrived in England, and in the following year Edgar begins attending boarding school in London. There, he becomes known as "Master Allan". This lasted until Edgar and his godparents returned to America in 1820, stopping in New York and then returning to their previous home in Virginia. In 1824, his first known poem was written. This was not published during Poe's lifetime, but it was discovered later and then published. In the springtime of 1826 he entered the university of Virginia, which was founded by Thomas Jefferson. There he studied French, Spanish, Latin and Italian. He hoped to graduate with some degree in languages. Although he had an excellent scholastic record, Edgar encountered difficulties. He learned to play cards and began drinking heavily, something that he would continue to do throughout the remainder of his life. Soon, Edgar was two thousand dollars in debt. He learned the hard way that he could no longer depend on his foster father for financial support. Since John Allan refused to pay off Edgar's debts, and Edgar had no way of paying them off himself, he was forced to withdraw from the university and seek out a different life. The following year, 1827, he enlisted in the United States Army as a common soldier under the false name of Edgar E. Perry. He adapted very fast and very well to the rules of military discipline, and quickly rose from the rank of a common soldier to the rank of Regimental Sergeant Major. All throughout this period of time in the military, Edgar exchanged letters with his foster father. I929, when his foster mother, Frances Allan, becomes sick and dies, Edgar visited John Allan. Soon after this visit he became tired of the daily routine of military life and decided to retire from his life as a Regimental Sergeant. In 1831 he moved to New York in search of a better life, but he could find no job there. And had no place to live. Eventually he took shelter with his aunt, Mrs. Clemm, who lived in Baltimore. That is where he decided to look for employment and try to...

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