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The setting is at a kingdom by the sea which means the poem takes place in European medieval times. According to Poe, "It was many and many a year ago, In a kingdom by the sea..." (Poe line 1,2). The revealing of them both being children reveals that the poem is being told from a past memory. As stated by Poe, "I was a child and she was a child, In this kingdom by the sea;"(Poe line 7,8).
The theme of Annabel Lee is love. The speaker states that he and his fair maiden had been in love since they were children. According to Poe, "But we loved with a love that was more than love-- I and my Annabel Lee" (Poe 9,10). In fact, their love was so strong that he believes not even death could end their undying love. He feels like their souls are one, so he sleeps in her tomb to show his love. As stated by Poe, "And so, all the night tide, I lie down by the side Of my darling--my darling--my life and my bride...In her tomb by the sounding sea" (Poe line 39, 41).
The refrains used in this poem emphasizes on the love that the speaker shared with his beloved Annabel Lee. According to Poe, "My beautiful Annabel Lee... Of the beautiful Annabel Lee" (Poe line 16,32). The repetition of her name and the constant reminder of her beauty reveals the speaker's obsession with the love of his life.
The speaker is reminiscing on the connection he shared with his childhood love, and he keeping it alive by honoring her life. He is grieving her death with no intentions of moving on. Although she has gone on, she still lives on his heart. As stated by Poe, " But our love it was stronger by far than the love Of those who were older than we" (Poe line 27, 28).
The imagery used is "A kingdom by the sea". In fairy tales, the symbolism of princes and princess are a romantic touch to the stories and movies. According to Poe, "And this was the reason that, long ago, In this kingdom by the sea," (Poe line 13, 14). Therefore, in this poem, it emphasizes the romance that Poe was referring to between the Speaker and Annabel Lee. Also, words such as maiden and highborn kinsmen also reveals the royalty in this love story.
Instead of the angels being the innocent workers for God, they are the bad guys. They hated the relationship that the speaker and Annabel Lee had. Hypothetically speaking, it is safe to say that these angels were more of the devil and had a hand in killing Annabel Lee. Poe viewed everything from a darkened spectrum, so they could have been the cause of her death. According to Poe, "The angels, not half so happy in heaven, Went envying her and me" Poe (line 21,22).
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