Alliteration In The Raven

Please discuss the alliteration from The Raven, by Edgar Allen Poe.

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Angie Waters eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The Raven by Edgar Allen Poe, is Poe's most popular poem and the one he, personally, was most pleased with. It has a constant rhythm and many examples of alliteration, giving it a musical quality, and tells the sad story of Lenore, "the rare and radiant maiden," (rare and radiant are examples of alliteration), lost forever to the most despondent narrator.  The narrator is determined to torment himself as he dwells on his "sorrow for the lost Lenore." (Lost and Lenore are examples of alliteration.) 

Alliteration is a literary, sound device, using repeated sounds at the beginning of words, that allows the poet to emphasize particular words or phrases throughout the poem to ensure that the reader understands the message. In The Raven , the reader is almost hypnotized by the ongoing alliteration because the rhythm that it creates, and which is intensified by the rhyme and the word and phrase repetition, engrosses the reader in the poem and the narrator's misfortune as he hears the knocking:...

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