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Golden Bells

Symbol Analysis

This second set of bells is also deeply symbolic. Gold has been a sign of wealth and permanence (since it doesn't tarnish or corrode) and love (think of wedding rings) for a long time. That's why it makes sense that Poe uses gold bells as a symbol of the calm harmony and happiness that takes over in this section. These are wedding bells, after all.

  • Line 16: Notice all of the words that describe these golden bells and the sound they make. They are "mellow" and full of "delight. They foretell happiness and harmony. Basically, it's all good in section 2 of this poem.
  • Lines 32-34: One of the things that probably jumped out at you right away in this poem was the number of times the speaker uses the word "bells" at the end of every section. Well, it's actually a pretty common technique, called a refrain (a little like a chorus in a song). Still, Poe takes it to a pretty crazy extreme in "The Bells."

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