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The Masque Of Red Death Essay

2238 words - 9 pages

Edgar Allan Poe was born in the year of 1809. His father left the family when Poe was an infant, and his mother died when he was three to tuberculosis. It is asserted that “Poe spent his early adult life in and out of the army, engaging in an ongoing struggle over money with his foster father, and developing the notorious habits of alcoholism and debt” (Milne 233). Soon, he was released from the army because he did not fulfill his duties as a cadet. The U.S. Army decided to allow him to submit his resignation and return home. For him to engage in abuse of alcohol and an insurmountable amount of debt lead to devastating outcomes for him. He got married in 1836 to Virginia Clemm who was 13 ...view middle of the document...

After Poe passed away, his literary work and style became much more famous influencing other young poets at that time.

The protagonist The Masque of the Red Death written by Edgar Allan Poe is Prince Prospero. He is a very wealthy man who seeks filling his life with material items as a solution to keep him content. The prince lives a very lavish life living in his castle, but his overall personality is strange. He believes that too escape the Red Death the best way is to be confined from society, so nothing will be able to cause any catastrophic results. Prospero can be exemplified as valiant when he confronts the mysterious dweller lurking in the castle. If his character seems weak in front of the invited guests, his reputation will be tainted, so he challenged this pursuer not knowing what will happen to him. Prince Prospero wants others to presume him as a superior and dominant individual.
The opposing figure in this story plays an important role as a masked figure. Character exemplified as “The figure was tall and gaunt, and shrouded from head to foot in the habiliments of the grave. The mask which concealed the visage was made so nearly to resemble to countenance of a stiffened corpse” (Poe 451). Physical appearance appears to be dreary and it can be presumed that this character has come here to bring evil into the castle. He must be very scary because when the guests looked upon him everyone was trembling in fear. Guests would not try to take off his mask as the Prince Prospero demanded, so he took action himself. The prince looked mortified himself, but he believed this figure was weak. The masked figure grazed through the different rooms observing causing fear in the people near him. This devious figure causes astonishing outcomes throughout the story while playing as an opposing force to protagonist. Near end of story it describes how one-by-one masked figure steadily killed everyone.

The Red Death causes people to reside in Prince Prospero’s castle being entertained by earthly pleasures. The author placed these extravagant items in the hands of the wealthy to suggest that they believe prosperity will save them from death. One critic states “The entire masquerade ball can be read as an allegory for the ways in which humans attempt to distract themselves from thought of their own mortality by indulging in earthly pleasures” (Brent 242). As the night goes on, the wealthy guests enjoy until an unknown intruder enters the castle disguised as the image of death. Poe describes this figure as having an odd appearance which disgusts noble people in the castle. This description can create a predisposition in reader’s minds that it is time for every individual to face their death. In fear of this ominous figure, people retreat to the side wall for protection that death may spare them. Poe exemplifies Prince Prospero as turbulent in his character’s nature of dealing with this situation directing orders to capture this stranger. Prospero...

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