Annabel Lee Questions and Answers
by Edgar Allan Poe

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What words, situations, and contexts does Edgar Allen Poe's "Annabel Lee" share with other stories? What other texts are touched on in the poem?

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The poem uses the word “love” in some format (either love or loved) eight times to emphasize the poet’s strong feelings for Annabel Lee. The poem is his homage to his lost love. In fact, he explicitly states that “Annabel Lee ... lived with no other thought than to love and be loved by me.” The words “maiden” and “child” are each used twice in the poem, telling us that Annabel Lee and the poet were young when they fell in love. In other words, theirs was an example of young love.

In several stanzas, the poet incorporates references or allusions to the Bible or the heavens. For instance, he says that “the wingèd seraphs of Heaven” coveted the two young lovers. Moreover, “The angels, not half so happy in Heaven” envied—or were jealous of—the young lovers. The word “Heaven” appears three times in the poem, and it is capitalized in each case. By capitalizing it, Poe makes it clear that he is referring to the Heaven where the angels and G-d reside; he is not referring to the sky above us.

He also says that “the demons down under the sea” were not powerful enough to erase the love that he and Annabel Lee felt for one another. So we are told that the young lovers share a love so powerful that no supernatural beings—neither angels nor demons—can interfere. They can take the earthly body of Annabel Lee from him, but even so, Annabel Lee and the poet's souls (the word appears twice in the poem) will always be inseparable.

The phrase “kingdom by the sea” appears five times. On some level, this might also reference the ideal of Camelot, which was set in Great Britain (a kingdom by the sea).

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