The Masque of the Red Death

The Masque of the Red Death

By Edgar Allan Poe

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Synopsis

"The Masque of the Red Death", originally published as "The Mask of the Red Death", is a short story written by Edgar Allan Poe and first published in 1842. The story follows Prince Prospero's attempts to avoid a dangerous plague known as the Red Death by hiding in his abbey. He, along with many other wealthy nobles, has a masquerade ball within seven rooms of his abbey, each decorated with a different color. In the midst of their revelry, a mysterious figure enters and makes his way through each of the rooms. When Prospero confronts this stranger, he falls dead. The story follows many traditions of Gothic fiction and is often analyzed as an allegory about the inevitability of death, though some critics advise against an allegorical reading. Many different interpretations have been presented, as well as attempts to identify the true nature of the disease of the "Red Death."

Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe (Boston, Estados Unidos, 19 de enero de 1809 – Baltimore, Estados Unidos, 7 de octubre de 1849) fue un escritor, poeta, crítico y periodista romántico estadounidense, generalmente reconocido como uno de los maestros universales del relato corto, del cual fue uno de los primeros practicantes en su país. Fue renovador de la novela gótica, recordado especialmente por sus cuentos de terror. Considerado el inventor del relato detectivesco, contribuyó asimismo con varias obras al género emergente de la ciencia ficción. Por otra parte, fue el primer escritor estadounidense de renombre que intentó hacer de la escritura su modus vivendi, lo que tuvo para él lamentables consecuencias.