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The narrator and Usher had been “boon companions” in youth but had not seen each other for many years after that. The closeness is necessary for enabling the narrator to provide the Usher background, and the interval since their close association is necessary to allow chronologically for the deterioration of the Usher family to have occurred. Presumably Poe does not give the narrator a name because that would divert emphasis from Usher to the narrator himself. The narrator is unlike the narrators of “The Black Cat” and “The Cask of Amontillado” because in these works the narrators describe their own actions, whereas in “The Fall of the House of Usher” the narrator is describing the activities of his former close friend.
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