The Masque of the Red Death Questions and Answers
by Edgar Allan Poe

The Masque of the Red Death book cover
Start Your Free Trial

What does the abbey symbolize?

Expert Answers info

dymatsuoka eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2007

write3,287 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Math

According to critic H.H. Bell, Jr., the abbey symbolizes a man's life, with the seven chambers within each symbolizing a decade in that life.  The first chamber is on the east side of the abbey, signifying birth and the rising of the sun.  The last chamber is on the west side, signifying death and the sun's setting.

There is more interesting information on the symbolism of the abbey and its chambers at the link below.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial