What Is a Metaphor From the Raven?

"The Raven" is one of Edgar Allen Poe's most famous poems. In it, the narrator is tormented by his grief over his lost love, Lenore, and then by a mysterious raven who shows up in his study and will only say the words "Never more." The raven is a symbol of the narrator's own grief and his fears about his mortality. However, many metaphors are used to describe the raven throughout the poem.

Metaphorical Descriptions

Metaphor is the comparison of two dissimilar things to create deeper meaning. Unlike simile, metaphor does not use the term "like" but instead makes a direct correlation, often using the word "is." Metaphor is used multiple times throughout the poem to personify the raven, making him more terrifying. When the raven first appears, the narrator says he sat "with mien of lord or lady," which automatically lets the reader know that there is something unique about this bird. Once the raven starts tormenting the narrator with his repeated refrains of "Never more," the narrator calls him a prophet or the devil. Later, the narrator says the raven's "fiery eyes now burned into my bosom's core," comparing the eyes to fire. The metaphor used in the poem helps to make the raven seem more magical and not of this world, which increases the terror the narrator feels, as well as the reader.

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