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Analysis

What’s Up With the Title?

Annabel Lee is the star of the poem, and she's the only thing in the world that matters to the speaker. So it's not too surprising that the poem is named after her. On top of that, the title introduces us to the sound of her name, which is important for Poe. He repeats her name seven times, and more than half the lines in this poem end with that ee sound. It's almost like the name is shouted out in the title, and then echoes through the rest of the poem. She is the center of this poem, but we never learn much about her except that she was young, and her name was Annabel Lee. In a way, the sound of her name becomes her, takes her place. It's a poem about a girl, but also about the memory of her, the traces of her. She hasn't left much behind for him but the sound of a name he keeps repeating. The title, always the first thing we read, is a great place for Poe to tip us off to this theme.

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