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The Fall of the House of Usher

The Fall of the House of Usher

by Edgar Allan Poe

Family Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #1

I reined my horse to the precipitous brink of a black and lurid tarn that lay in unruffled lustre by the dwelling, and gazed down--but with a shudder even more thrilling than before--upon the remodelled and inverted images of the grey sedge, and the ghastly tree-stems, and the vacant and eye-like windows. (1)

This is the second time that the narrator has used the words “vacant” and “eye-like” to describe the house of Usher.

Quote #2

I was aware, however, that his very ancient family had been noted, time out of mind, for a peculiar sensibility of temperament, displaying itself, through long ages, in many works of exalted art, and manifested, of late, in repeated deeds of munificent yet unobtrusive charity, as well as in a passionate devotion to the intricacies, perhaps even more than to the orthodox and easily recognisable beauties of musical science. (3)

This background, too, makes the Usher family seem other-worldly – their world is the fictional world of art and music, not of reality.

Quote #3

"House of Usher"--an appellation which seemed to include, in the minds of the peasantry who used it, both the family and the family mansion. (3)

This line gives us a hint to interpret the title as referring both to the physical house collapsing and to the metaphorical “fall” of the Usher family.

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