Annabel Lee Essay

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In this essay, Reilly disputes the contention of Buford Jones and Kent Ljungquist that Frances

Sargent Osgood's poem "The Life-Voyage. A Ballad" served as the model for Poe's "Annabel Lee. "

Professors Buford Jones and Kent Ljungquist exercise more ingenuity than care in arguing that there are enough "internal parallels alone" to make Frances Sargent Osgood's "The Life-Voyage. A Ballad" a "probable model" for "Annabel Lee" [see "Poe, Mrs. Osgood, and 'Annabel Lee,'" Studies in the American Renaissance (1983)]. Noting that Poe must have been familiar with "The Life-Voyage" when he wrote "Annabel Lee," Jones and Ljungquist cite what they believe are five "parallels" between the two poems: 1) both contain the phrase "sounding sea"; 2) both "are ballads"; 3) both "begin in fairy tale fashion beside the sea"; 4) both present a fair maiden "who is envied by the angels in heaven"; and 5) both share the "theme of angelic-demonic ambivalence." But Jones...

(read more from the Critical Essay #3 section)

This section contains 1,220 words
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Poetry for Students
Annabel Lee from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.