Everyone Is Mortal

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Everyone will one day face mortality. This was also true for Prince Prospero in the short story by Edgar Allen Poe, “The Masque of the Red Death”. In it is a version of the black plague, which is called the “Red Death”. Prince Prospero secludes a thousand friends and himself from the death around them, but finds that he cannot avoid the inevitable. The author uses many literary devices to develop the theme of unavoidable death. One of the devices used is imagery, which evokes the events of the story clearly in the reader’s mind. Another is allegory, which is used by Poe to create another story within his, as it is filled with double meanings. Lastly, Poe utilizes symbolism to give the story meaning. Edgar Allan Poe uses imagery, allegory, and symbolism to add dimension to his story and to express the theme that one cannot escape death, no matter how hard one tries. Poe uses imagery to paint a picture in readers’ mind, create a mood, and emphasize the significance of certain objects. One can envision the amazement of the chambers, which had “…a tall and narrow Gothic window…of stained glass whose color varied in accordance with the…hue…of the chamber into which it opened” and was lit up by “…a brazier of fire that projected its rays through the tinted glass” (421). One can also imagine the way the crowd slows down to a pause when the “…chiming of the clock... [causes] disconcert and tremulousness and meditations” (423). These descriptions keep readers’ attention throughout
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