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10 Facts About Edgar Allan Poe

1. Poe liked to adhere to established ‘rules’ regarding short stories, specifically that the action should take place over the course of a single day and in a single location.

2. Not just known for his unsettling tales, his story “The Murders in the Rue Morgue” (1841) introduced the modern detective story.

3. Poe was not allowed to continue his university education after his guardian found out about his gambling losses. He was also subsequently expelled from West Point for purposely missing drills and classes.

4. Like any good poet, he spent his early works trying to emulate Lord Byron. Later in life he still used his poetry to woo women, writing odes to Sarah Helen Whitman, Annie Richmond, and Sarah Anna Lewis.

5. At the age of 26, Poe married his first cousin Virginia Clemm, who was exactly half his age. Her death, cause by tuberculosis, is said to have influenced Poe’s works such as “Ligeia” and “Annabel Lee.”

6. “The Raven”, published in January 1845, gave him national fame almost immediately.

7. Although much of Poe’s best work is concerned with fear and sadness, and it is said he had to rely on stimulants to manage his nerves when speaking in front of others, Poe is described as pleasant company.

8. Poe had a strong sense of foreboding about his own death…

9. Four days before his death on October 7, 1849, Poe was found unconscious in the streets of Baltimore. He never regained consciousness to explain what happened to him and so many theories—from kidnapping to different types of poisoning to a brain tumor—all circulate around his death.

10. In a devious ploy, Poe’s literary rival, Rufus Wilmot Griswold, wrote Poe’s obituary under a false name and slandered Poe’s life and reputation.


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