The Tell Tale Heart

The Tell Tale Heart is a suspense short story written by Edgar Allan Poe. The narrator in the story is unnamed neither known its gender, but it was believed to be a man. The story begins with the narrator insisting that he’s completely sane, but suffering with nervousness which causes over-acuteness of the senses. The reason of his nervousness is an old man’s eye. He admitted that he is afraid of the old man’s eye so he wants to get rid the old man’s life.

The narrator explains that the old man never done wrong to him, even not aiming for his wealth and also acclaimed that he love the old man, it just that he could not stand to sight the old man’s eye which reminds him of a vulture (kind of a scavenger bird). He came out with the idea of killing the old man, so he could no longer see the old man. Although the narrator is aware that this rationalization (excuses) seems to indicate his insanity, he explains that he cannot be mad because instead of being foolish about his desires, he went about murdering the old man with caution.

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Week before the murder, the narrator tells how kind he was with the old man, he sneaks to the old man’s room every midnight and cautiously shines a lantern to the old man face, but the old man’s eyes are always closed, impossible for him to do the crime. But on the 8th night of doing the nightly ritual, the narrator’s lantern slips in his hands causes a loud sound interrupting the old man sleep. Old man’s consciousness and curiosity of someone’s presences inside the room made him to open his lantern flashes a little light on the old man’s eye. Now, the narrator got the opportunity to do the crime.

Hearing the old man’s heart beating loudly and dangerously fast from terror, the narrator decides to strike, jumping out with a loud yell and smothering the old man with his own bed. To hide all the signs of his crime, the narrator chop the old man’s body and conceals the pieces under the floorboards. The crime’s noises disturb the neighborhood which causes the neighborhood to report the disturbance. It is four in the morning when 3 policemen knocks at the door, and the narrator cheerfully invites the policemen to investigate where the reported screams came from. Confidently, he let the policemen its on the exact spot where he conceals the body of the old man.

The narrator tries to explain that the scream the neighbor heard is his, saying that his is having a nightmare that night and the old man went outside the country. The narrator, however, begins to feel uncomfortable and notices a ringing in his ears. He thought it was the old man’s heart thumbing from the floor, not having any idea that it his heart beating very fast because of nervousness. Afraid that the policemen might hear the old man’s heart, he later on reveals the old man’s corpse and confesses the crime he did.

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