Edgar Allan Poe is the only Victorian author to have an NFL Football Team named for his writing.
You go, Edgar!
He’s probably the only writer in world whose life is celebrated yearly by a lone Toaster. The Poe Toaster is the unofficial nickname given to a mysterious figure who pays an annual tribute to American author Poe by visiting the author’s original grave marker on his birthday, January 19. Though many gather annually to watch for the toaster and his yearly visit is supported by the Edgar Allan Poe Society, he is rarely seen or photographed. His identity has never been revealed to the public. The original toaster visited the tomb yearly between 1949 and his death in 1998, after which time the tradition was left to “a son.” A bottle of cognac is usually left on his tombstone.
Thomas M. Disch has argued in his The Dreams Our Stuff Is Made Of (1998) that it was actually Poe who was the originator of the modern science fiction.
Poe’s work and his theory of “pure poetry” was early recognized especially in France, where he inspired Jules Verne, Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867), Paul Valéry (1871-1945) and Stéphane Mallarmé (1842-1898). “In Edgar Poe,” wrote Baudelaire, “there is no tiresome snivelling; but everywhere and at all times an indefatigable enthusiasm in seeking the ideal.”
In America Emerson called him “the jingle man.” Poe’s influence is seen in many other modern writers, and in the development of the19th century detective novel. J.L. Borges, R.L. Stevenson, and a vast general readership, have been impressed by the stories which feature Poe’s detective Dupin (‘The Murders in the Rue Morgue’, 1841; ‘The Purloined Letter,’ 1845) and the morbid metaphysical speculation of ‘The Facts in the Case of M. Waldermar’ (1845).
One of his tales, ‘Mellonta Taunta’ (1840) describes a future society, an anti-Utopia, in which Poe satirizes his own times. Other tales in this vein are ‘The Thousand-and-Second Tale of Sceherazade’ and ‘A Descent into the Maelstrom’. However, Poe was not concerned with any specific scientific concept but mostly explored different realities, one of the central concerns of science fiction ever since
Edgar Allan Poe was born January 19, 1809 in Boston, where his mother had been employed as an actress. Elizabeth Arnold Poe died in Richmond, Virginia, on December 8, 1811. His father, also an actor, had died in 1810 and Edgar was taken into the family of John Allan, a member of the firm of Ellis and Allan, tobacco-merchants. Edgar added the surname Allan as his middle name.
The cities of Baltimore, Maryland, and Richmond, Virginia, have wonderful POE MUSEUMS. There are Edgar Allan Poe Societies and several American universities have Poe Studies Departments.
Annabel Lee, is the most famous poem composed by Poe. Like many of his poems, it explores the theme of the death of a beautiful woman. The narrator, who fell in love with Annabel Lee when they were young, has a love for her so strong that even angels are jealous. He retains his love for her even after her death. There has been debate over who, if anyone, was the inspiration for “Annabel Lee.” Though many women have been suggested, Poe’s wife Virginia Eliza Clemm Poe is one of the more credible candidates. Written in 1849, it was not published until shortly after Poe’s death that same year.
EDGAR ALLAN POE’S WRITINGS:
Tamerlane and Other Poems, By a Bostonian, 1827, was followed by a large body of work, some of which is still being adapted into films.