You are watching: What is nepenthe in the raven
Stanza XIV that Edgar Allan Poe’s city The Raven is one of the hardest pieces of English literature to recognize for a non-native speaker. The complying with explanation is based upon my book about the whole poem. Note: The entirety stanza is separated into “half verses”.
You deserve to read the whole stanza rewritten in less complicated English and the original at the finish of the article.
Then, methought1, the air prospered denser2,
US ˈðɛn mɪˈθɔːt ði ˈɛr ɡruː ˈdɛnsɚ
UK ˈðɛn mɪˈθɔːt ði ˈɛə ɡruː ˈdɛnsə
1 “methinks” method “it seems to me”. This word, found in variety in the works of Shakespeare, is only supplied in modern-day English as a humorous method to to express an opinion.
2 “grew denser” means “became denser”.
perfumed native an unseen1 censer2
US ˈpɝːfjuːmd frəm ən ʌnˈsiːn ˈsɛnsɚ
UK ˈpɜːfjuːmd frəm ən ʌnˈsiːn ˈsɛnsə
1 the cannot be seen.
2 a container offered to burn incense (a routine perfume) during religious ceremonies.
Swung by Seraphim1 who foot-falls2 tinkled3
US ˈswʌŋ baɪ ˈsɛrəfɪm huːz ˈfʊtfɔːlz ˈtɪŋkld
UK ˈswʌŋ baɪ ˈsɛrəfɪm huːz ˈfʊtfɔːlz ˈtɪŋkld
1 seraphs or seraphim (both gift the many of “seraph”) space angelic us belonging to the greatest order the the celestial hierarchy.
2 a footfall (alternatively assignment foot-fall) is the sound made by footsteps.
3 do a irradiate metallic sound.
on the tufted1 floor.
US ɔn ðə ˈtʌftɪd ˈflɔːr
UK ɒn ðə ˈtʌftɪd flɔː
1 having actually tufts. A tuft is a bunch the feathers, grass, hair, moss, or an additional soft product joined at the base. Here, “tufted floor” most likely refers come the tufts discovered on a mat ~ above the floor.
Note: Tufts likewise refer to the swarm of threads with buttons in ~ both ends the are frequently used in mattresses, cushions, etc., to strengthen the padding (the ﬁlling material), and also the adjective “tufted” is greatly used once talking about types of mattresses and also cushions.
“Wretch1,” ns cried, “thy God hath2 lent thee3—
US ˈrɛtʃ aɪ kraɪd ðaɪ ˈɡɑːd hæθ ˈlɛnt ðiː
UK ˈrɛtʃ aɪ ˈkraɪd ðaɪ ˈɡɒd hæθ ˈlɛnt ðiː
1 an unfortunate and also miserable person, below referring come the speak himself.
2 archaic 3rd person singular of “have”, i.e. “has”.
3 accusation of “thou”, an archaic type of “you”.
by these angels that hath sent out thee
US+UK baɪ ðiːz ˈeɪndʒəlz ˈhiː hæθ ˈsɛnt ðiː
Respite1—respite and also nepenthe2
US ˈrɛspɪt ˈrɛspɪt ˈænd nɪˈpɛnθiː
UK ˈrɛspaɪt ˈrɛspaɪt ˈænd nɪˈpɛnθiː
1 a brief interval the relief.
2 a mythological Greek drug that gives relief indigenous grief or sorrow.
from your memories that Lenore;
US frəm ðaɪ ˈmɛməriz əv ləˈnɔːr
UK frəm ðaɪ ˈmɛməriz əv ləˈnɔː
Quaff1, five quaff this kind2 nepenthe
US ˈkwæf oʊ ˈkwæf ðɪs ˈkaɪnd nɪˈpɛnθiː
UK ˈkwɒf əʊ ˈkwɒf ðɪs ˈkaɪnd nɪˈpɛnθiː
1 drink a large amount quickly; overindulge in drinking.
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2 benevolent, nice.
and forget this shed Lenore!”
US ˈænd fɚˈɡɛt ðɪs ˈlɔːst ləˈnɔːr
UK ˈænd fəˈɡɛt ðɪs ˈlɒst ləˈnɔː
Quoth the crow “Nevermore.”
US ˈkwoʊθ ðə ˈreɪvn ˌnɛvɚˈmɔːr
UK ˈkwəʊθ ðə ˈreɪvn ˌnɛvəˈmɔː
* * *
In a minute of madness, the speak is talking to himself, imagining the angels brought him relief indigenous his sorrow. Here is the entirety stanza in easier language:
Then I assumed the air obtained denser perfumed by an invisible censerWhich was swung through angels whose footfalls tinkled on the floor.“You poor thing,” ns said, “your God has lent girlfriend relief and medicine(which he sent you by this angels) from her memories of LenoreDrink, oh drink this good medicine and also forget this lost Lenore!”The crow replied: “Nevermore.”
Now, read the original again:
Then, methought, the air thrived denser, perfumed native an unseen censerSwung by seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted floor.“Wretch,” ns cried, “thy God hath lent thee–by this angels that hath sent theeRespite—respite and nepenthe, from thy memories that Lenore;Quaff, oh quaff this type nepenthe and also forget this shed Lenore!”Quoth the raven “Nevermore.”
This post was based upon my ebook around The Raven. It describes vocabulary, pronunciation, and also grammar offered in the ebook in detail—why don’t you inspect it out?