The Masque of the Red Death is a short story written by acclaimed literary author

The Masque of the Red Death is a short story written by acclaimed literary author, Edgar Allen Poe. The story is an emphasis on the fact that there is no avoiding death, no matter how hard you try, which is the overall theme. The text tells the story of Prince Prospero whose town is being plagued by the dreaded Red Death. He attempts to avoid the plague by inviting 1,000 of his closest friends, all of which are variably different, to isolate themselves in his palace. Throughout the story, Poe frequently uses symbolism to depict the theme of the Red Death.
Those who cannot afford to run from the Red Death. This is important because it will eventually wrap the entire story together. Poe wants to emphasize the theme being that no one can escape death. This is meant to include the rich and powerful. Prospero is royalty and seeing his town being destroyed by the Red Death, attempts to avoid it using all his wealth and power. Again Hubert Zapf explains in his essay that Prospero has created a “castellated abbey, whose architecture is a power-structure against the lower classes and against the Red Death.” But nothing can keep death away, no matter who you are. This is a common element in Poe’s stories when dealing with death, and he makes it known by using the castle as the backdrop of the city being plagued.
Then there is dreams, “swirling around the revelers” makes the reader believe they are insane with sickness. All these words signify to the reader that they are all already dead, because they can’t escape death no matter how hard they try.
Second, Poe uses imagery to distinguish his dramatic irony by using words such as the “brazier of fire” this is a lit light in another corridor. This also signifies that there is life on the outside and soon to be less on the inside. Poe sets up dramatic irony in this image is set up in the last room which is black, and this is the last stage of life. The scarlet pains in the black room also mean blood, and fear, then death. In this last room is where Prospero dies by the hands of the Red Death, showing that no one can escape death, no matter how rich, or smart they are. Another image is that the rooms are set up from east to west, east meaning the beginning of life and the rise of the sun, and west the end of life, also the sunsets in the west. This suggests that they came into the abbey with life, and by the time the sunsets they will have possibly faced their death. Another symbol is the big black clock that sets in the black room. This clock is counting down time “the time that flies” until they die and symbolizes death.

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I'm Barry!

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