The Use Of Symbols In "The Masque Of The Red Death" Essay

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Everyone fears their own death, thus why some people will do anything to escape it. In Edgar Allan Poe's short story, “The Masque of the Red Death”, this fear is experienced by all. In the story, a prince named Prospero and his people try to elude the Red Death through seclusion and isolation in the prince's abbey. However, no walls can stop death since it is unavoidable and inescapable. Throughout the story, Poe uses symbols such as the rooms, the masked figure, and the clock to convey the theme that no one can escape death. The image of the rooms used in the story has a main contribution to the theme being conveyed. Prince Prospero's abbey consists of seven different and symbolic rooms. The fact that there were seven rooms is symbolic…show more content…
For instance, the panes were scarlet, a deep blood colour. The "bloody" red room thus becomes a place of ending not only due to the westward location, but also because of its color. Poe describes the last, black room as the dreadful endpoint, the room the guests fear just as they fear death. The room is feared by the guests because it reminds them of death, which is why no one enters the room. The room is involved in all of the main scenes throughout the course ofthe story. For example, this is the room Prince Prospero and his guests die from the Red Death and also where the clock is located. The reader sees how important the rooms are throughout the story and its main contribution to the theme. Within the story, the masked figure is used as an important symbol in portraying that no one can escape death. The masked figure, who made its presence at midnight, had not been seen by anyone before. The masked figure is described as “tall and gaunt, and shrouded from head to foot in the habiliments of the grave” (Poe 5). Furthermore, when the mask of the Red Death appears, it is shocking to all the guests. The reader discovers that this guest is even more strange than all the other guests. The figure resembles a corpse of a victim of the Red Death, thereby symbolizing the presence of the plague, which is the dangerously deadly disease all the guests are attempting to escape from. This comes to show that death finds its way to everyone. The appearance of the
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