We have changed our privacy policy. In addition, we use cookies on our website for various purposes. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. You can learn about our practices by reading our privacy policy.
© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.


Character Role Analysis

The Inquisition

If we're talking big picture – and we are – then we have to talk about our villains not as judges or even as inquisitors. No, the forces that conspire against our narrator are bigger than that. They are: The Inquisition… no, no, even better: THE INQUISITION – a hulking, frightening mechanism of torture and doom. Yes, they count men among their ranks, but their devices of torture – the pit, the pendulum, and the entire ghastly cell – are extensions of one central power, the deadly legs of a vast, venomous spider of an organization. (Okay, okay, maybe we're going overboard with our metaphors, but what better way to capture the fevered breathless narration of Poe than with a little purple prose of our own?) To make a long story short: the Inquisition is a tough and devious foe, and it's no wonder it takes an army (literally) to bring them down.