The Fall of the House of Usher Study Guide

The Fall of the House of Usher Study Guide

Original title:
The Fall of the House of Usher
February 2nd 2004 by BookSurge Classics (first published September 1839)
ISBN 1594561796 (ISBN13: 9781594561795)

The father of a detective genre and a great English writer created “The Fall of the House of Usher” in 1839. The text is rich in Edgar Allan Poe’s typical atmosphere, writing style, rampant imagination, and suspense. It is a great exercise for the mind and also emotions. 

The story takes the reader into a world of mystery, despair, and extinction. We get to meet a very old generation that used to be unbelievably rich and powerful. Only their presence alone used to be enough to make everybody tremble. But today two twins, both of whom are weak physically and emotionally, are all that is left of the family. 

Roderick and Madeline live in a dilapidating estate. It seems that their health is failing at an even greater speed than the cracks on the house are growing. Roderick anticipates a soon demise and writes to his only friend to come help him. He hopes that the visit will entertain him at least a bit. The friend experiences this subtle but annoying feeling of an upcoming death. Death of a person and death of a whole family. The last day of Usher existence… 

At first, it seems that there’s nothing to be scared about: there is no family curse, no ghosts, and no dark secrets. The author writes the plot in broad strokes leaving a lot for the imagination of the reader. And it is exactly this style that makes the atmosphere of the book so tense – this light aftertaste of madness and loss makes your heart sink not once during the book. 

Today there are many psychological science novels on the shelves of the bookstores. But this book was written long before such genre was even invented. Edgar is a master in inserting hints, light suggestions, sharp words. His creations occupy the minds of the readers long after the last page is turned. 

New Essays

Unity and Effect in The Fall of the House of Usher

The story, “The Fall of the House of Usher,” is a representative work of Edgar Allan Poe. Moreover, the representative horror tale, “The Fall of the House of Usher,” exemplifies his principle of unity of effect. Beginning with a long periodic, it leads the reader right into the strange and...

The Fall of the House of Usher Quotes with Page Number

“Not hear it? --yes, I hear it, and have heard it. Long --long --long --many minutes, many hours, many days, have I heard it --yet I dared not --oh, pity me, miserable wretch that I am! --I dared not --I dared not speak! We have put her living in the tomb!” — — “I was forced to fall back upon the...

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Webster describes setting as ''the way to describe the place, time, and environment in a story or play.'' But, setting can do more then that as well. Setting can create atmosphere in a story. The writer can use the setting to foreshadow events that are soon to come. It can also tell the reader...

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In September 1839, a man by the name of Edgar Allan Poe released his most popular and criticized short story, entitled "The Fall of the House of Usher". In Poe's gothic tale, Roderick Usher has invited the unnamed narrator, a distant childhood friend, to help alleviate his deteriorating house...

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