The Pit and the Pendulum by Edgar Allan Poe There is no question that Edgar Allan Poe is one of the most talented writers the world has ever seen. Nearly every piece of work he has created has gone on to be commonly known around the globe. Poe uses a dark style to offer a different type of story than what his audience is typically used to. This style, which is very prominent in The Pit and the Pendulum , is derived from several different influences, such as his childhood, his love life, and his relationship with his family. Edgar Allan Poe was born on January 19 th , 1809 in Boston, Massachusetts to Eliza and David Poe Jr. “Poe’s father and mother, both professional actors, died before the poet was three years old, and John and Frances Allan raised him as a foster child in Richmond, Virginia” (Academy of American Poets). Poe attended college at the University of Virginia in 1826, however although he was “a gifted and popular student, Poe left the University on December 15, 1826, never to return” (Kijewski). Apparently, Poe had a little bit of a gambling problem and his adopted father, John, would not continue to support Edgar financially if he was going to continually waste it placing bets. This among other differences led to a constantly growing tension between John and Edgar that nearly boiled over just before Edgar “finally enlisted in the Army just to get away from him” (Jordan). This time period is when Poe first started a “collection of poems, [titled] Tamerlane, and Other Poems ” and “Al Aaraaf, Tamerlane, and Minor Poems ” (Academy of American Poets). In the short period of time Poe spent at West Point, “ he accumulated an impressive record—though not of the sort to which a cadet usually aspired…with 44 offenses and 106 demerits for the term” (Ryan). After being kicked out, Poe “then moved into the home of his aunt Maria Clemm and her daughter Virginia in Baltimore, Maryland” ( Academy of American Poets ).
After living with his aunt and cousin for a year, Poe “married Virginia, who was fourteen years old at the time” ( Academy of American Poets ). Virginia was diagnosed with tuberculosis after eleven years of marriage, resulting in a lengthy and miserable final year of her life. There was nothing that Poe was able to do in order to save his wife, so he had no choice but to wait death, which was a good friend of Poe’s at this point in his life.