From 11:00PM PDT on Friday, July 1 until 5:00AM PDT on Saturday, July 2, the Shmoop engineering elves will be making tweaks and improvements to the site. That means Shmoop will be unavailable for use during that time. Thanks for your patience!
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.
The Raven

The Raven


by Edgar Allan Poe

The Raven Analysis

Symbols, Imagery, Wordplay

Welcome to the land of symbols, imagery, and wordplay. Before you travel any further, please know that there may be some thorny academic terminology ahead. Never fear, Shmoop is here. Check out our...

Form and Meter

This is a really carefully organized poem. Let's take a closer look at the first six lines (the first stanza), since what we see happening there gets repeated throughout the poem. Here it is, to jo...


So, we know this poem was written over 150 years ago, and we're sure that people talked differently back then. Still, we're not sure you would have met a lot of people in 1845 who walked around sho...


So, we aren't lucky enough to have a rich, eccentric, childless uncle. But if we did, we bet he'd hang out in a room like the one Poe describes in this poem. We bet the curtains would be "silken" a...

Sound Check

We think this poem sounds exactly like a magic spell. If you wanted to curse someone, or summon an evil spirit, we bet you'd want something that sounded exactly like this poem. Do you feel the way...

What's Up With the Title?

Well, in one sense, the title is pretty basic. Since the poem is about a raven, "The Raven" makes a good title, as far as we're concerned. Still, Poe had other options. He could easily have called...

Calling Card

When the poem you are reading features death (especially deceased women), an elaborate rhyme, and mournful language, you can be pretty sure you're dealing with Poe. He loved to tell stories about d...


There's a really, great clear story driving this poem. Because of that, even when Poe gets a little carried away and the vocabulary gets a little dense, this is still an easy and fun poem to read.

Brain Snacks

Sex Rating

This poem is certainly all about feelings of love and desire. However, one half of the couple in question is dead, so things never get too steamy.

Shout Outs

Pallas (41, 104): This is a reference to the Greek goddess Athena, often called Pallas Athena, or just simply Pallas. She is primarily associated with wisdom, which makes her head an ironic place f...

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...