The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe

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Can you please provide a quotation that contains an example of verbal irony from "The Tell-Tale Heart"?

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Gretchen Mussey eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Verbal irony is when the narrator says something that contradicts their true feelings or intentions. Essentially, verbal irony is when a statement has an underlying meaning that contrasts with its literal meaning. In the short story Tell-Tale Heart, the narrator mentions that he plans on killing the old man. He goes on to say,

"During all of that week I was as friendly to the old man as I could be, and warm, and loving" (Poe 2).

This would be considered verbal irony because the narrator is anything but loving and warm. He is plotting to kill the old man, yet describes himself as "loving." A loving person would never plot to commit murder.

Another example of verbal irony takes...

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Kristen Lentz eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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