The Raven Questions and Answers
by Edgar Allan Poe

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Explain at least two allusions from the poem "The Raven."

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The Raven (maintaining Poe's use of capitalization in the poem) perches on a bust of Pallas Athena, often just referred to as Pallas. This is not an accidental landing spot, and it represents at least a couple of symbolic possibilities. First, Athena is known for wisdom. Is the bird therefore speaking prophetically? Does it actually know with certainty that the narrator will never see the beloved Lenore again, symbolized by its placement atop this statue? Or is this situational irony because the bird can only speak this one word, leaving the narrator to torture himself through his own impossible questions? The narrator seems to believe that through the bird's position on Pallas, it brings answers to his questions. He will never see Lenore again, and this will forever torment his soul. The poem concludes with:

And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door.

The bird never leaves the narrator, remaining on this symbolic...

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