89 Facts About Edgar Allan Poe

1.

Edgar Allan Poe was an American writer, poet, editor, and literary critic.

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2.

Edgar Allan Poe is widely regarded as a central figure of Romanticism in the United States, and of American literature.

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3.

Edgar Allan Poe was one of the country's earliest practitioners of the short story, and considered to be the inventor of the detective fiction genre, as well as a significant contributor to the emerging genre of science fiction.

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4.

Edgar Allan Poe is the first well-known American writer to earn a living through writing alone, resulting in a financially difficult life and career.

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5.

Edgar Allan Poe was born in Boston, the second child of actors David and Elizabeth "Eliza" Edgar Allan Poe.

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6.

Edgar Allan Poe's father abandoned the family in 1810, and when his mother died the following year, Poe was taken in by John and Frances Allan of Richmond, Virginia.

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7.

Edgar Allan Poe attended the University of Virginia but left after a year due to lack of money.

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8.

Edgar Allan Poe quarreled with John Allan over the funds for his education, and his gambling debts.

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9.

Poe and Allan reached a temporary rapprochement after the death of Allan's wife in 1829.

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10.

Edgar Allan Poe switched his focus to prose and spent the next several years working for literary journals and periodicals, becoming known for his own style of literary criticism.

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11.

Edgar Allan Poe's work forced him to move among several cities, including Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York City.

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12.

Edgar Allan Poe planned for years to produce his own journal The Penn, but before it could be produced, he died in Baltimore on October 7,1849, at age 40, under mysterious circumstances.

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13.

Edgar Allan Poe had an elder brother named William Henry Leonard Poe and a younger sister named Rosalie Poe.

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14.

Edgar Allan Poe may have been named after a character in William Shakespeare's King Lear, which the couple were performing in 1809.

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15.

Edgar Allan Poe's father abandoned the family in 1810, and his mother died a year later from consumption.

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16.

John Edgar Allan Poe alternately spoiled and aggressively disciplined his foster son.

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17.

The family sailed to the United Kingdom in 1815, and Poe attended the grammar school for a short period in Irvine, North Ayrshire, Scotland before rejoining the family in London in 1816.

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18.

Edgar Allan Poe was entered at the Reverend John Bransby's Manor House School at Stoke Newington, then a suburb 4 miles north of London.

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19.

Edgar Allan Poe may have become engaged to Sarah Elmira Royster before he registered at the University of Virginia in February 1826 to study ancient and modern languages.

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20.

Edgar Allan Poe claimed that Allan had not given him sufficient money to register for classes, purchase texts, and procure and furnish a dormitory.

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21.

Edgar Allan Poe gave up on the university after a year but did not feel welcome returning to Richmond, especially when he learned that his sweetheart Royster had married another man, Alexander Shelton.

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22.

Edgar Allan Poe traveled to Boston in April 1827, sustaining himself with odd jobs as a clerk and newspaper writer, and he started using the pseudonym Henri Le Rennet during this period.

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23.

Edgar Allan Poe first served at Fort Independence in Boston Harbor for five dollars a month.

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24.

Edgar Allan Poe's regiment was posted to Fort Moultrie in Charleston, South Carolina, and traveled by ship on the brig Waltham on November 8,1827.

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25.

Edgar Allan Poe was promoted to "artificer", an enlisted tradesman who prepared shells for artillery, and had his monthly pay doubled.

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26.

Edgar Allan Poe served for two years and attained the rank of Sergeant Major for Artillery ; he then sought to end his five-year enlistment early.

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27.

Frances Allan died on February 28,1829, and Poe visited the day after her burial.

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28.

Edgar Allan Poe was finally discharged on April 15,1829, after securing a replacement to finish his enlisted term for him.

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29.

Edgar Allan Poe traveled to West Point and matriculated as a cadet on July 1,1830.

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30.

Edgar Allan Poe decided to leave West Point by purposely getting court-martialed.

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31.

Edgar Allan Poe tactically pleaded not guilty to induce dismissal, knowing that he would be found guilty.

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32.

Edgar Allan Poe returned to Baltimore to his aunt, brother, and cousin in March 1831.

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33.

Edgar Allan Poe was one of the first Americans to live by writing alone and was hampered by the lack of an international copyright law.

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34.

Publishers often refused to pay their writers or paid them much later than they promised, and Edgar Allan Poe repeatedly resorted to humiliating pleas for money and other assistance.

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35.

Edgar Allan Poe placed a few stories with a Philadelphia publication and began work on his only drama Politian.

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36.

Edgar Allan Poe became assistant editor of the periodical in August 1835, but White discharged him within a few weeks for being drunk on the job.

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37.

Edgar Allan Poe returned to Baltimore where he obtained a license to marry his cousin Virginia on September 22,1835, though it is unknown if they were married at that time.

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38.

Edgar Allan Poe was reinstated by White after promising good behavior, and he went back to Richmond with Virginia and her mother.

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39.

Edgar Allan Poe published several poems, book reviews, critiques, and stories in the paper.

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40.

Edgar Allan Poe published numerous articles, stories, and reviews, enhancing his reputation as a trenchant critic which he had established at the Messenger.

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41.

In June 1840, Edgar Allan Poe published a prospectus announcing his intentions to start his own journal called The Stylus, although he originally intended to call it The Penn, as it would have been based in Philadelphia.

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42.

Edgar Allan Poe left Burton's after about a year and found a position as writer and co-editor at the then-very-successful monthly Graham's Magazine.

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43.

Around this time, Edgar Allan Poe attempted to secure a position within the administration of President John Tyler, claiming that he was a member of the Whig Party.

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44.

Edgar Allan Poe hoped to be appointed to the United States Custom House in Philadelphia with help from President Tyler's son Robert, an acquaintance of Poe's friend Frederick Thomas.

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45.

Edgar Allan Poe failed to show up for a meeting with Thomas to discuss the appointment in mid-September 1842, claiming to have been sick, though Thomas believed that he had been drunk.

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46.

Edgar Allan Poe was promised an appointment, but all positions were filled by others.

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47.

One evening in January 1842, Virginia showed the first signs of consumption, or tuberculosis, while singing and playing the piano, which Edgar Allan Poe described as breaking a blood vessel in her throat.

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48.

Edgar Allan Poe left Graham's and attempted to find a new position, for a time angling for a government post.

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49.

Edgar Allan Poe returned to New York where he worked briefly at the Evening Mirror before becoming editor of the Broadway Journal, and later its owner.

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50.

Broadway Journal failed in 1846, and Edgar Allan Poe moved to a cottage in Fordham, New York, in the Bronx.

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51.

That home is known as the Edgar Allan Poe Cottage, relocated to a park near the southeast corner of the Grand Concourse and Kingsbridge Road.

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52.

Nearby, Edgar Allan Poe befriended the Jesuits at St John's College, now Fordham University.

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53.

Edgar Allan Poe attempted to court poet Sarah Helen Whitman who lived in Providence, Rhode Island.

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54.

Edgar Allan Poe then returned to Richmond and resumed a relationship with his childhood sweetheart Sarah Elmira Royster.

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55.

Edgar Allan Poe was taken to the Washington Medical College, where he died on Sunday, October 7,1849, at 5:00 in the morning.

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56.

Edgar Allan Poe was not coherent long enough to explain how he came to be in his dire condition and why he was wearing clothes that were not his own.

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57.

Edgar Allan Poe is said to have repeatedly called out the name "Reynolds" on the night before his death, though it is unclear to whom he was referring.

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58.

Edgar Allan Poe's attending physician said that Poe's final words were, "Lord help my poor soul".

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59.

One theory dating from 1872 suggests that Edgar Allan Poe's death resulted from cooping, a form of electoral fraud in which citizens were forced to vote for a particular candidate, sometimes leading to violence and even murder.

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60.

Griswold wrote a biographical article of Edgar Allan Poe called "Memoir of the Author", which he included in an 1850 volume of the collected works.

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61.

Many of his claims were either lies or distortions; for example, it is seriously disputed that Edgar Allan Poe was a drug addict.

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62.

Griswold's book was denounced by those who knew Edgar Allan Poe well, including John Neal, who published an article defending Edgar Allan Poe and attacking Griswold as a "Rhadamanthus, who is not to be bilked of his fee, a thimble-full of newspaper notoriety".

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63.

Edgar Allan Poe's best known fiction works are Gothic horror, adhering to the genre's conventions to appeal to the public taste.

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64.

Edgar Allan Poe's most recurring themes deal with questions of death, including its physical signs, the effects of decomposition, concerns of premature burial, the reanimation of the dead, and mourning.

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65.

Edgar Allan Poe once wrote in a letter to Thomas Holley Chivers that he did not dislike transcendentalists, "only the pretenders and sophists among them".

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66.

Edgar Allan Poe reinvented science fiction, responding in his writing to emerging technologies such as hot air balloons in "The Balloon-Hoax".

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67.

Edgar Allan Poe wrote much of his work using themes aimed specifically at mass-market tastes.

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68.

Edgar Allan Poe disliked didacticism and allegory, though he believed that meaning in literature should be an undercurrent just beneath the surface.

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69.

Edgar Allan Poe believed that work of quality should be brief and focus on a specific single effect.

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70.

Edgar Allan Poe describes his method in writing "The Raven" in the essay "The Philosophy of Composition", and he claims to have strictly followed this method.

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71.

Edgar Allan Poe accused Longfellow of "the heresy of the didactic", writing poetry that was preachy, derivative, and thematically plagiarized.

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72.

Edgar Allan Poe correctly predicted that Longfellow's reputation and style of poetry would decline, concluding, "We grant him high qualities, but deny him the Future".

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73.

Edgar Allan Poe was known as a writer of fiction and became one of the first American authors of the 19th century to become more popular in Europe than in the United States.

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74.

Edgar Allan Poe is particularly respected in France, in part due to early translations by Charles Baudelaire.

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75.

Edgar Allan Poe's work influenced science fiction, notably Jules Verne, who wrote a sequel to Edgar Allan Poe's novel The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket called An Antarctic Mystery, known as The Sphinx of the Ice Fields.

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76.

One trend among imitators of Edgar Allan Poe has been claims by clairvoyants or psychics to be "channeling" poems from Edgar Allan Poe's spirit.

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77.

Aldous Huxley wrote that Edgar Allan Poe's writing "falls into vulgarity" by being "too poetical"—the equivalent of wearing a diamond ring on every finger.

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78.

Edgar Allan Poe eschewed the scientific method in Eureka and instead wrote from pure intuition.

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79.

In particular, Edgar Allan Poe's suggestions ignored Newtonian principles regarding the density and rotation of planets.

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80.

Edgar Allan Poe had placed a notice of his abilities in the Philadelphia paper Alexander's Weekly Messenger, inviting submissions of ciphers which he proceeded to solve.

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81.

In July 1841, Edgar Allan Poe had published an essay called "A Few Words on Secret Writing" in Graham's Magazine.

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82.

The sensation that Edgar Allan Poe created with his cryptography stunts played a major role in popularizing cryptograms in newspapers and magazines.

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83.

Edgar Allan Poe had an influence on cryptography beyond increasing public interest during his lifetime.

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84.

Historical Edgar Allan Poe has appeared as a fictionalized character, often representing the "mad genius" or "tormented artist" and exploiting his personal struggles.

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85.

Edgar Allan Poe is believed to have lived in the home at the age of 23 when he first lived with Maria Clemm and Virginia.

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86.

The winning design by Stefanie Rocknak depicts a life-sized Edgar Allan Poe striding against the wind, accompanied by a flying raven; his suitcase lid has fallen open, leaving a "paper trail" of literary works embedded in the sidewalk behind him.

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87.

Early daguerreotypes of Edgar Allan Poe continue to arouse great interest among literary historians.

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88.

Sam Porpora was a historian at the Westminster Church in Baltimore where Edgar Allan Poe is buried, and he claimed on August 15,2007, that he had started the tradition in 1949.

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89.

Edgar Allan Poe's story has not been confirmed, and some details which he gave to the press are factually inaccurate.

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