Paper On What Killed Edgar Allen Poe?

795 words - 4 pages

Edgar Allen Poe was an American writer, poet, and editor and was best known for his dark and twisted stories and poems that seemed to linger in readers' imaginations. His mystifying artistry delivered tales of horror and mystery; in fact, he is thought to be the founder of the modern detective story. With that in mind, it seems almost ironic that, to this day, no one is quite sure just how the man died. Like any good detective story, there are many different theories as to what murdered this dismal writer. There are many ideas, including alcoholism, crooked elections, gaslighting, his troubled heart, problems in his brain, and many more. The articles being analyzed have theorized that his death was caused by alcoholism, brain issues, or rabies.

In the first article, the author theorizes that the mysterious poet may of died of an issue in the brain. One of the most recent theories about Poe's death suggests that the author succumbed to a brain tumor, which influenced his behavior before his death. The author of the article states," One of its senior physicians diagnosed Poe's condition as encephalitis, a brain inflammation, brought on by "exposure." There are two theories stated as to how he got this brain issue, exposure, and alcohol. Alcohol could have reacted with the brain to cause the reaction from Poe, and exposure to weather could have damaged his brain. This theory can't be proved simply because we did not have the technology to examine his head at the time.

The first article also suggests Edgar Allan Poe died of alcoholism. Months before his death, Poe became a vocal member of the temperance movement, eschewing alcohol, which he'd struggled with all his life. Biographer Kenneth Silverman recalls in his story,"Many others who had known Poe, including the professionally trained Dr. Snodgrass, also attributed his death to a lethal amount of alcohol" Poe had fallen ill in Richmond, and after making a somewhat miraculous recovery, was told by his attending physician that "another such attack would prove fatal." The poet had many problems in his life and was known to escape these problems with alcohol by those who were close to him. As shown in Letter to the Editor, Poe was found outside a Baltimore saloon in an alcoholic stupor on October 3, 1849, and died four days later." There were a few who said he had b...

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