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English II- The Fall of the House of Usher
Terms in this set (33)
Has a bad feeling; he sees a fissure(or a crack) running down the house which shows the gloomy tone
What are the narrator's first impressions as he draws near the House of Usher?
His old friend wrote him a letter because he was sick and said that he was the only one who could make him better; also it was an odd request because he had not seen him since college; the tone of the letter made him go
Why has the narrator come to the house?
Gives off an eerie feeling; eye like windows, bleak walls, the rank sedges, excessive antiquity, vines, crumbling condition of the individual stones, and the fissure(or crack) in the house
How does the narrator describe the mansion? What details in this description of the house seem most significant?
There is someone who is sick there; there is illness in the house
What might the presence of a physician foreshadow?
The windows were long, narrow, and pointed, black oaken floor, vaulted and fretted ceiling, furniture was profuse, comfortless, antique, and tattered, books and instruments scattered about, atmosphere of sorrow; the tone was gloomy and sorrowful
Describe Usher's study. What kind of mood does it create?
He had pale skin, he was very changed since the last time he had seen him, had large, liquid, luminous eyes, silken hair but wildly growing dark hair, he was also thin
What details in the description of Roderick Usher give you a vivid picture of his physical appearance and mannerisms?
He was struck at his nervous agitation; he was very agitated/nervous; he was not calm; he looked either like he was drunk or on drugs
When the narrator meets Usher, what startles him most about Usher's appearance?
He was enchained by certain superstitious impressions; obsessed with certain superstitions of the house; the house had its own personality; he never left the house
What "singular feature" of Usher's mental condition does the narrator discover?
He is afraid of being scared; deep terror; this always why he always stays at the house;
To what is Usher a "bounden slave?"
Twin sister; she has the illness of being cataleptical which means she has lost her consciousness and feeling; muscles become rigid; not in touch with reality
Who is Madeline? What illness does she have?
All the family has died except for Roderick and Madeline, but the house is taking over the family. He has to inherit the house because no one else is there to take it
How does having only one son to carry on the family name link the Usher family to the ancestral home?
Roderick feels that the house is making him ill. Madeline is going away. The house and the family are diminishing.
What does Poe accomplish by directly linking the family and the mansion in this way?
Usher is wasting away so he reflects the condition of the house.
What parallels can you see between the description of Usher and Poe's description of the house?
Lady Madeline dies; Usher reports to Jonathan that she died
What happens to Lady Madeline?
Jonathan helps Usher temporarily bury her in the bottom cellar of the house
What does the narrator assist Usher with following the death of Usher's sister?
They bury her temporarily in the cellar of the house so the physicians don't come looking for her
Where do they bury her?
Roderick becomes insane because he thinks he hears Lady Madeline; Jonathan tries to calm him down and he is not interested; also Jonathan becomes to have symptoms from the house; wants to get out
How does Roderick's behavior change after the death of Madeline?
Jonathan tries to calm him by reading him a romance called "Mad Trist of Sir Launcelot Canning."
What does Jonathan do to try to calm Roderick down when he visits his room?
He hears the cracking and ripping of wood, a shriek, and he hears a shield fall. This is ironic because the noises he hears are the same ones they read about in the story.
What noises does the narrator hear in the midst of reading the "Mad Trist?"
Usher has been hearing these noises for many days, but he dared not speak because he was nervous; he buried her alive even thought they thought she was dead
How does Usher explain these noises?
The door opens from the wind; Lady Madeline appears at the door covered in blood and falls on her brother causing him to die of fear; Lady Madeline also dies
What happens immediately after Usher finishes his explanation?
Jonathan flees and crosses the bridge as fast as he can
What does Jonathan do?
The fissure widens causing the house to split into two; Then, the House falls into the tarn
What happens to the House of Usher?
The final fall of the house represents that the family line is no longer in existence. Roderick and Madeline were the only two members of the family left, and they both passed away.
An allegory is a story or poem that can be read on one level for its literal meaning and on a second level for its symbolic meaning. What could the final fall of the house represent?
V. Destroy completely
N. Very great age
Long, narrow crack or opening
N. Ending or downfall
N. Violent or forceful pulling apart of something
Adj. loud, excited, and emotional
A literary genre that began in England in the late 1700s
The term_was originally used as an architectural term. It refers to medieval buildings, such as castles and cathedrals, that were seen as dark and gloomy by later generations. When writers began to set their stories in those buildings of the past, the term for architecture was applied to the literature.
- Bleak or remote settings
- Characters in psychological and/or physical torment
- Plots that involve weird or violent incidents and supernatural or otherworldly occurrences
- Strong dramatic and intensely descriptive language
-A gloomy, melancholy, or eerie mood
-Symbolism that evokes ideas and feelings through repeated images
The Gothic style, which has the following elements, appealed to Edgar Allen Poe's dark view of the world:
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