• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Essay on Edgar Allen Poe’s the tell tale heart

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Essay on Edgar Allen Poe's the tell tale heart. This contains story and analysis. TRUE! nervous, very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am; but why WILL you say that I am mad? The disease had sharpened my senses, not destroyed, not dulled them. Above all was the sense of hearing acute. I heard all things in the heaven and in the earth. I heard many things in hell. How then am I mad? Hearken! and observe how healthily, how calmly, I can tell you the whole story. It is impossible to say how first the idea entered my brain, but, once conceived, it haunted me day and night. Object there was none. Passion there was none. I loved the old man. He had never wronged me. He had never given me insult. For his gold I had no desire. I think it was his eye! Yes, it was this! One of his eyes resembled that of a vulture -- a pale blue eye with a film over it. Whenever it fell upon me my blood ran cold, and so by degrees, very gradually, I made up my mind to take the life of the old man, and thus rid myself of the eye for ever. Now this is the point. ...read more.

Middle

So I opened it -- you cannot imagine how stealthily, stealthily -- until at length a single dim ray like the thread of the spider shot out from the crevice and fell upon the vulture eye. It was open, wide, wide open, and I grew furious as I gazed upon it. I saw it with perfect distinctness -- all a dull blue with a hideous veil over it that chilled the very marrow in my bones, but I could see nothing else of the old man's face or person, for I had directed the ray as if by instinct precisely upon the damned spot. And now have I not told you that what you mistake for madness is but over-acuteness of the senses? now, I say, there came to my ears a low, dull, quick sound, such as a watch makes when enveloped in cotton. I knew that sound well too. It was the beating of the old man's heart. It increased my fury as the beating of a drum stimulates the soldier into courage. But even yet I refrained and kept still. I scarcely breathed. I held the lantern motionless. I tried how steadily I could maintain the ray upon the eye. Meantime the hellish tattoo of the heart increased. ...read more.

Conclusion

Was it possible they heard not? Almighty God! -- no, no? They heard! -- they suspected! -- they KNEW! -- they were making a mockery of my horror! -- this I thought, and this I think. But anything was better than this agony! Anything was more tolerable than this derision! I could bear those hypocritical smiles no longer! I felt that I must scream or die! -- and now -- again -- hark! louder! louder! louder! LOUDER! -- "Villains!" I shrieked, "dissemble no more! I admit the deed! -- tear up the planks! -- here, here! -- it is the beating of his hideous heart!" Poe's story is a case of domestic violence that occurs as the result of an irrational fear. To the narrator that fear is represented by the old man's eye. Through the narrator, Poe describes this eye as being pale blue with a film over it, and resembling that of a vulture. Does the narrator have any reason to fear the old man or his eye? Is it this phobia that evokes the dark side, and eventually drives the narrator to madness? Or could Poe be referring to a belief whose origins could be traced back to Greece and Rome? The belief in the evil eye dates back to ancient times, and even today, is fairly common in India and the countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Edgar Allan Poe section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Edgar Allan Poe essays

  1. Comparison of 'The Tell Tale Heart', 'The Black Cat', and 'The Oval Portrait'.

    It refers t the cruelty that a pet has to endure from its alcoholic owner. The three stories all convey references of suffering and chaos. But, 'The Tell Tale Heart' and 'The Black Cat' portray this action as a more physical process.

  2. How does Edgar Allan Poe create atmosphere in "The Tell Tale Heart"

    An example of short sentences in "The Tell Tale Heart": "There was no pulsation. He was stone dead." This shows an urgency to make sure he was dead He could not risk the old man to be alive It adds tension because we do not know what he will do.

  1. Compare and Contrast "The Tell Tale Heart" by Edgar Allan Poe and "A Confession ...

    The victim in 'A confession found in a prison in the time of Charles II' is the little boy and the motive behind killing him is that he could cause problems in the future. The murderer could see the boy's mother, every time he looked into the boy's eyes.

  2. 'The Fruit at the Bottom of the Bowl' 'The Tell Tale Heart' And ...

    'Tony Kytes, The Arch Deceiver' is a hilarious story and slightly different. Unlike the other two it doesn't share the theme of murder. However even though it isn't driven by the mind playing conscience Tony Kytes also suffers from 'obsession', the obsession of woman.

  1. The Tell Tale Heart.

    In 'The Tell Tale Heart' the main can hear and see a few strange things.

  2. Tales of terror

    The narrator is talking to someone else another person who is not identified. Poe has written this story in 1st person narrative, by doing this Poe provides us with insight into the character's motivation in committing murder as well as his purpose in relating it to the reader.

  1. Edgar Allan Poe 'Tell Tale Heart' and 'the fall of the house of Usher

    The description of the pale blueness of the eye, could suggest that the narrator feels the eye looks right into him and his conscience, and that this scares him. Poe emphasizes the old man's eye describing it as, '. .

  2. Themes of Edgar Allen Poe - comparing 'The Black Cat' and 'The Cask of ...

    According to Edgar Allen Poe, "Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe" The appearance of the second black cat casts a spellbinding power over an already guilt sickened mind. At first the narrator is very pleased by the affection bestowed upon him by the second cat, but little by little

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work