In "The Raven" what specific words serve to establish mood? What lines and phrases occurring later in the poem sustain this mood?
mood or atmosphere
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In the beginning, I like the words midnight dreary, weary, nearly napping, bleak December, and dying ember. For me, these words make me feel that late night quiet, cold outside but warm inside atmosphere. They also make me feel that almost asleep place of comfort.
In the third stanza, the lines "And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain Thrilled me - filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before" make me feel a mood of terror or fright.
In the last four stanzas, references to demons, the devil, evil, a fiend, and a shadow maintain that terror or fear, because fear generally comes from evil.
The comfort from the beginning is referenced by his question, "Is there - is there balm in Gilead?" This balm of Gilead is an allusion to substance noted in the bible that comforts, soothes and restores. The raven tells the speaker no, nevermore.
The mood of “The Raven” is heavily influenced by its language. From the very start, the speaker uses words like bleak, weary, dreary, and sorrow to depict his situation and his feelings. Poe continues to build on the sadness that these early stanzas create, particularly with the use ofthe refrain, “Nevermore.” This word, though uttered by a bird, captures the hopelessness that the speakerfeels over the loss of his beloved. Other factors that contribute to the sad and desperate mood of the poeminclude the speaker’s increasing state of despair and excitement and the still, immovable nature of the ravenperched above his chamber door.
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