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The Haunted Palace

The Haunted Palace

by Edgar Allan Poe

The Windows

Symbol Analysis

Poe uses the windows in the palace to symbolize two human eyes. He imagines people looking through those eyes to see what's happening inside the palace-head. Ever heard the old expression "The eyes are the window to the soul"? Well, that's the idea here. At first, everything looks fine, the mind inside the symbolic head is in good shape. At the end, though, those same windows show a much weirder and scarier picture.

  • Line 18: Here the windows are in pretty good shape, and they show us a happy scene. Well, actually, in this line, we don't quite find out what they show us, because of the enjambment that cuts off the line. We just find out that the travelers in the valley saw… what? It's like a mini cliffhanger, and it reminds us why enjambment is useful for creating suspense for readers. 
  • Line 42: Now these windows (which, remember, are symbols for human eyes) look pretty different than they did before. Before they were shiny and happy, but now they are lit up with red light. That image sounds almost demonic to us, like something you'd expect to see in a horror movie. The palace and the head that it represents are both in serious trouble. Yipes.

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