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Edgar Allan Poe Essay

1350 words - 6 pages

The life of Edgar Allan Poe is not a tale of ease. Poe’s life was full of personal and fiscal disaster. These disasters help to mold some of the most ominous and intellectually challenging poetry ever written. For the short duration of Poe’s life, he was seen as a literary critic rather than an author. To the modern generation his unbeknown status seems bafflingly inconceivable, considering his now acclaimed publications. Edgar Allan Poe’s writing was very much dictated by his life. The mournful tone of Edgar Allan Poe’s life created his literature; death and all his friends narrated Poe’s life. Edgar Allan Poe shows his life’s constant despair through his poetry and short story writings.
Edgar Allan Poe was born January 19, 1809 to a pair of “Itinerant actors, David Poe Jr. and Elizabeth Poe.” (Tilton 12). The Poe name was one of strong regard because of their strong hand in the revolutionary war (Tilton 12). In 1809, two years after his brother, Poe was born (Tilton 13). This family wouldn’t remain untied long, before Edgar turned one his father disappeared (Padgett 20). This event left his mother, Elizabeth Poe, in great poverty (Tilton 13). With the birth of Poe’s younger sister came even more financial struggle for Poe’s family (Tilton 13). Although Elizabeth’s acting ability continued to amaze audiences, her pay was not adequate to support her children. On December 8, 1811 Elizabeth passed away due to a vigorous case of tuberculosis (Padgett 23).
Poe was soon absorbed into the Allan household (Tilton 14). Frances Allan became particularly devoted to the young Poe, as she had no children of her own. After growing up in a more privileged setting the business of Mr. Allan began to fail (Tilton 15). As a result Allan reallocated to Scotland (Tilton 15). Between England and Scotland Poe became increasingly successful in his schooling until 1819 when Poe was forced to move to Richmond, Virginia, again due to Mr. Allan’s financial troubles (Tilton 18). Poe would continue his education at the University of Virginia and also at West Point Military Academy (Tilton 35).
Edgar’s education came with many struggles. Poe was forced to leave his education behind at eighteen because John Allan couldn’t afford to continue supporting him (Tilton 32). During the time before West Point Poe published his first work “Tamerlane and Other Poems” (Padgett 44). Although these works became well known Poe still couldn’t support himself. He was forced to enter the West Point Military Academy (Tilton 36). For a short time Poe thrived, but after attaining the rank of sergeant major, like most things in Poe’s life, West Point began to sour. Poe, still seeking John’s approval, wrote Allan asking permission to leave West Point, but with no answer Edgar decided to seek a court martial, and thus dismissal (Tilton 36). On the eighteenth of February 1831 Poe was released from West Point (Tilton 36). The next day Edgar arrived in New York City where a new chapter of his...

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