The poem The Raven, by Edgar Allan Poe is written in a very melancholic tone that evokes feelings of sorrow and sadness. The actions of the narrator throughout the story also exude these sad emotions. The setting helps to create this tone as well because the focus on death and darkness adds to the morbid mood. The first line establishes the sorrowful tone of The Raven. The narrator states that he is sitting in his room filled with grief because he was left alone when his lover departed. The mood becomes even more depressing in the second stanza when the narrator states that “nevermore” would he see his lover again.
Throughout The Raven, Poe uses words that set a dreary, sad tone. The narrator repeats words such as “nevermore” again and again throughout The Raven which makes the reader think about how it would feel to be separated from a loved one. The narrator also questions whether or not the raven who has appeared is actually his lost love, Lenore. The use of this rhetorical question makes the reader feel the same sadness and emptiness that the narrator is experiencing. The repetition of certain words, such as “nevermore” or questions that may never be answered, reinforce the melancholy tone Poe creates for The Raven.
The physical actions of The Narrator in The Raven also adds to the sad emotions evoked by this poem. The narrator’s physical actions are mostly limited to grieve, but this grief only adds to the sorrowful tone of The Raven. The narrator sits in his room alone with no one else to console him after being abandoned by his lover, Lenore. The emotions he feels upon her departure are shown through his “grief and – the wildness of my despair” The repetition of his grief shows that he has been feeling this way for a long time and that The Raven is set at a point in time where he cannot feel emotions other than sadness.
The narrator also has no motivation to go outside because “In there- each day have I explored some new phase/of sorrow – only to find it everywhere. ” The fact that the narrator has been thinking about Lenore and feeling sad for an unknown amount of time shows how much he misses her. The last physical action by The Narrator in The Raven is when he tries to chase the raven as it flies away, but The Raven simply disappears like his lover The actions The Narrator takes in The Raven are limited to grief, but this grief is extremely effective in adding to the melancholy tone of The Raven.
The setting of The Raven adds greatly to the morose feel that Poe creates for The Raven. The time frame that The Raven is set in contribute greatly to this sense of sorrow because it is constantly dark and The Narrator constantly refers to death. The poem begins at night when The Raven appears “During the hour of [The Narrators] dreary musings” The narrator also expresses that his window is constantly covered with darkness because The Raven has perched on a bust that sits by it. If The Raven were to take flight The Narrator would be able to see light seeping in, but The Raven only stays because The Narrator “feebly implore” The Raven to stay.
The reader can assume that it is The Narrators window since he watches The Raven while sitting by his window. The setting also helps the tone of The Raven because The Raven has appeared in The Narrators room bringing in darkness and death with him The setting in The Raven may be dark because The Narrator is perpetually sad, or perhaps The Raven has caused the darkness because The Raven is a symbol of death. The backdrop of The Raven also adds to this morose mood because all of The Narrators previous attempts at happiness have been unsuccessful “In she came – and yet I knew that she was dead”
The word choice by Poe also helps to create a melancholy tone for The Raven. Many words throughout set a negative tone such as “sorrowful” “despair” and even The Ravens name itself, “Nevermore. ” These words contribute greatly to the dreary setting The Narrator is in and The Narrators depressing emotions The word choice also sets a morose tone because The Raven has an evil connotation to it. The name The Raven is generally known as a harbinger of death. After all his misfortunes in his life, which included living a life of poverty and being orphaned at a young age, Poe’s beloved wife Virginnia, died after a long illness.
The pain and suffering that The Raven caused Edgar Allan Poe was reflected in his writing. The poem The Raven is considered to be one of his greatest poems and it has been read by millions of people around the world. The setting, actions and word choice all add to The Narrators emotions making The Raven a morose poem. The protagonist’s 1st person narration also contributes to the melancholy tone of The Raven because The Narrator discusses how no one else but himself will mourn for Lenore after she dies.
This idea echoes throughout The Raven, “Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door! ” The narrator appears very lonely in this poem because he begs The Raven to return his lover The Narrator’s tone of The Raven is very morose because The Raven is a symbol of death and The Narrator has been left alone to continue his grieving. The setting, the actions The Narrator takes and even his choice of words add to The Ravens morose tone making The Raven one of Poe’s most powerful poems. The nonchalant way that The Narrator refers to Lenore adds greatly to the melancholy tone of The Raven.
The raven is described as “my pet” which created an informal and casual relationship between them. This familiarity with Lenore also added some humor like how her name was pronounced “Len-or” instead of “Leh-nor-eh. ” The Narrator also uses a lot of imagery to describe The Raven and it adds greatly to The Ravens tone because The Raven is being described as a person with human characteristics. The nonchalant tone that The Raven has is very morose since The Narrator is describing someone that he loved dying, so he wouldn’t normally speak so casually about death.