Homework Help

What is the mood and setting of "The Telltale Heart" story?

user profile pic

johnnybravo | eNoter

Posted November 13, 2007 at 4:37 AM via web

dislike 1 like

What is the mood and setting of "The Telltale Heart" story?

6 Answers | Add Yours

user profile pic

brendawm | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

Posted November 13, 2007 at 8:01 AM (Answer #1)

dislike 0 like

Although not specific, “The Tell-Tale Heart” seems to be set within a house shared by the old man and his killer;  there is some suggestion of a family relationship, as the  narrator says that he loved his victim but “he did not covet the old man’s wealth.”  There is a mood of paranoia throughout the story as the narrator is obsessed with the idea of the  old man’s eyes, “a pale-blue, film-covered eye like that of a vulture, that he could not stand” and the “evil eye” causes his blood to run cold. The mood actually wavers between that of sheer insanity as the narrator expresses maniacal glee at the prospect of doing away with his tormentor and paranoia after the heart beat begins to drive him mad.

Sources:

user profile pic

sullymonster | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted November 13, 2007 at 12:26 PM (Answer #2)

dislike 0 like

The mood is also, as is true in many of Poe's story, one of suspense.  The night time observance of the old man, the murder, and the interview with the police are all seasons that rely upon the suspense of the reader to be effective.  Will the narrator actually kill him?  Will he confess?  These are questions that are lingered upon in detail before the answers are revealed.

user profile pic

tays194 | Student | eNotes Newbie

Posted September 24, 2009 at 8:29 AM (Answer #3)

dislike 0 like

The mood is madness for the narrator claiming that he, with the nervous desease he was not mad. I believe that he was for the eye haunting him and that he loved the old man?

user profile pic

soccerstarrr24 | Student, Grade 9 | eNoter

Posted October 6, 2009 at 6:47 AM (Answer #5)

dislike 0 like

You guys all have the mood correct but you are a little shaking on the details of the setting.  Yes, he is in the house of the old man, but why?  The answer is simple, he is his caretaker, not a family member.  There are numerous details explaining that but I'm not going to go into detail, I am rather hoping that the light bulb already went on.  The house is rather big because the old man is rather wealthy.  Like you all have said, the mood is mysterious, insane, horrific, or whatever your want to say along those lines.  He creates the mood using similes, repeated words, visual images, and sounds.

user profile pic

tunabox7 | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted October 30, 2011 at 9:06 AM (Answer #6)

dislike 0 like

The mood of the Tell Tale Heart is definitely one of suspense!!!!

user profile pic

weddanever | Student, Undergraduate | Honors

Posted September 27, 2009 at 6:54 PM (Answer #4)

dislike -1 like

the mood of the story is a little bit mysterious having to know that Edgar Allan Poe is the inventor of detective-fiction genre. the setting of the story was in the house of the old man at the span of time for atmost 8 days.

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes