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The Tell-Tale Heart

The Tell-Tale Heart

by Edgar Allan Poe

The Lantern

Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

This lantern is pretty cool. You can burn a candle or oil in it (doesn't say which in the story), but it has hinged panels that can be adjusted to let in as much or as little light as you want. The narrator keeps most of the light hidden, only allowing one "ray" to escape. This lantern is the narrator's weapon against the old man's eye. That's what we see on the eighth night – the lantern and the eye in a stare-down. It also suggests that sometimes there is light hiding in the darkest places. If we can figure our how to get our lanterns open, we can see it. Can you find any hidden light in this dark tale?

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