In the poem "The Raven", what are the changing implications of the word "Nevermore" in each situation?

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thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

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1:  Minimizes the importance of the sound with “nothing more.”

2. Lenore shall not be named again in this world – i.e. she is dead.

3.  The strangeness of the sound and the narrator’s fears are minimized by the suggestion that the sound is only caused by some random visitor, and nothing more.”

4. The narrator opens the door and the absence of any visitor and there being only darkness not light  is emphasized by “nothing more.”

5. The nothing more suggests the sound of Lenore is only an echo of his obsession,
“nothing more.”

6. Again, “nothing more” resurfaces as part of a materialistic explanation of the sound.

7. The Raven is naturalized by “nothing more.”

8. When people have gone to Hades, they no longer exist, thus no longer have names.

9. Suggests this is an implausible name for a Raven and still trivializes the omen.

10. The Raven will never leave.

11. Suggests that nevermore is a term used by those in despair.

12. Asks why the Raven says thus; transforms the Raven into a gaunt symbol of loss.

13. Lenore’s absence is eternal; thus never and ever are conflated.

14. Continues the idea of eternal presence of absence.

15. Eternal life (in heaven or hell) means there is no end to missing Lenore.

16. He shall never meet Lenore in heaven.

17. The Raven shall never leave.

18. Despair shall never leave.

Sources:

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