In my opinion i loved both. The meaning of the raven being the soul of his dead wife was a very touching point but, the horror of the pit and the pendelum was just to good to over come. Imagine if you went through that kind of justice system it makes me wounder if back then war was actually like that its so cruel and unusual i would have died the moment i was hanging off the end of the pit. Although the point and the story line of the Raven was amazingly good, the pit and the pendelum has it beat.!!
-shorty luvs Erick Saldana<3
This is a tough question since both are superbly written. I believe, however, that "The Raven" has so much more working for it with its great story line, rhyme scheme, vivid imagery and its almost musical rhythms. The mix of horror and humor is also first-rate. Along with "The Bells" and "Annabel Lee," I consider these three among the finest of all 19th century American poetry.
My students and I enjoy "The Raven" more than "The Pit and the Pendulum." Poe's "Raven" shows the poet at his best, and "The Pit" has so many dated allusions that a great deal of background knowledge is necessary to recognize the story's true impact.
Additionally, most readers find a new aspect to admire in the poem each time they read it.
I think the poem reflects the terror and fear that Poe made his own. Both works do echo this idea, but I think that the poem does this in a very lyrical and direct way. The structure and cadence of the poem resonates this in a more clear way, in my opinion.
They are both great stories, but the Pit and Pendulum is a more developed story. Both narratives (even though The Raven is a poem) leave a lot to the imagination and you have to read between the lines quite a bit to fully understand what is going on. This lends to the mystery and level of supernatural in the story which is typical of gothic literature.
"The Raven" is a poem, of course, while "The Pit and the Pendulum" is a short story. There is a bit of a narrative in "The Raven," though. We know Lenore is dead and that the narrator is grieving, but we don't know much more than that. The real "story" in the poem is the emotional disintegration of the speaker. Poe takes us through the many stages of his grief; the narrator is on an emotional roller coaster that ends in complete despair and hopelessness.
"The Pit and the Pendulum," in the form of a short story, also traces the emotional turmoil of a narrator, but the tone is different. "The Raven" is mysterious and sad; the tone of "The Pit and the Pendulum" is one of horror, as Poe intended. Of the two, I enjoy "The Raven" more because of its mysterious, supernatural elements.