What Does Prince Prospero Symbolize

In Poe’s “ The Masque of the Red Death

The Masque of the Red Death
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, hosts a masquerade ball in seven rooms of the abbey, each decorated with a different color.

https://en.wikipedia.org › wiki › The_Ma…

,” he uses symbols to convey hidden messages to show that there is no running from the inevitable like death. Poe uses Prince Prospero to symbolize the boastful confidence of the rich. In the beginning of the story, his people are dying from the Red Death.

Cite this page as follows:

“What does Prince Prospero symbolize in “The Masque of the Red Death”?” eNotes Editorial, 20 Oct. 2017, https://www.enotes.com/homework-help/what-does-prince-prospero-symbolize-55425. Accessed 15 Sep. 2022.

It could also be argued that Prince Prospero symbolizes hedonism and the human desire for pleasure. When the Red Death decimates his kingdom, Prosperos reaction is to gather together all of his friends in the abbey. As we see in the following quote, Prospero does not intend on ruminating about death or worrying at all about the plague:

In other words, the Princes priority is to have a good time and to not think about the realities of what is going on in his kingdom. All he cares about is entertaining his guests in the most splendid way possible.

At the end of the story, however, the Red Death catches up with Prospero and kills him. Through his death, Poe argues that pleasure is only a temporary distraction from the harsh realities of life. No matter how rich or how cultured, no man can escape death because death is an inevitability.

Prince Prospero can also symbolize the superiority that man sometimes thinks he/she has. Prince Prospero thought that by sequestering himself and his guests that he could somehow cheat death. Only the higher social class was invited to his “ball,” which represents how Prospero viewed this class as being more important than any others “below” it. Prospero can also symbolize how out of touch the upper class was with the lower classes in society. Perhaps Prospero and his revelers felt they deserved to live and the lower social classes did not simply because they had money and power. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Death affects all.

Prince Prospero symbolizes mankind and its inability to deal with the realities of death. Prospero, like many men, thinks he can avoid death or at least put it off. When the Red Death begins to kill most of the people in Prosperos kingdom, he attempts to use his wealth and possessions to escape the fate of everyman. He calls in his best friends, walls up his castle, and provides food and entertainment that lasts about six months. However, as Poe points out in this allegory, no man can escape death—It will seek you out and find you. This is exactly what happens to Prospero. Just when he is thinking he has escaped the plague, it invades his castle, seeks out his guests and leads Prospero through the seven rooms. According to critic H. H. Bell, Jr., in his article ‘‘The Masque of the Red Death: An Interpretation, the seven rooms are each an ‘‘an allegorical representation of Prince Prosperos life span.’’ Thus, once Prospero, like all men, go through the various stages of their lives, there is only one conclusion— death. This is exactly what happens to Prospero.

Download the entire The Masque of the Red Death study guide as a printable PDF!

What Does Prince Prospero Symbolize

Dont give up 31 ● Expressing the importance of nature Pre colonial ” Song in the sky loom”­pre colonial ● This qualifies as being an American because it talks about nature and how something such as a rug can symbolize many. Different parts of your culture a rug in there culture can be like a flag in our. And really symbolize the culture. They take pride in their cultures like Americans do. ● This piece of literature shows the hard work and labor people of America went through yet they still pushed forward and had faith…

anybody to know when they’ll die, just as the red death. Poe describes the red death as the poison depicting death for all those around it. During the 1800s, the red death was infecting everyone in New England. Once the red death had infected someone, it would eventually kill them; but the worst part is that they didnt know when they were going to die. Poe uses diction and ry to explain how the clock symbolizes death. In “The Masque of the Red Death”, Edgar Allan Poe uses the symbolism of the…

The allegorical lesson Poe is impacting in “Masque of the Red Death” (Poe 1) is that humans will do anything to elude death. The Masque of the Red death is filled with ry that supports the story’s allegorical interpretation, as well as symbols. First, in an effort to escape the Red Death, Prince Prospero invites his friends and they retreat to one of his fancy and ample “provisioned abbey” (Poe 1). The abbey has “a strong…

become aware of him sitting bedside” (The Husband 1). Clearly, death is inevitable. This widely occurring theme has been present throughout history, including the Black Death, which decimated millions of people in 14th century Europe. This plague struck terror in millions of people because of the gruesome and quick death that one would experience. The Black Death was the basis for Edgar Allan Poe’s deathly story, “The Masque of the Red Death.” In the story, a man hosts festivities for and shelters many…

Death and Prosperity: An Analysis of “The Masque of the Red Death” Have you ever had a near death experience? The masque of the red death written by Edgar Allen Poe is realistic fiction and has the main theme of. “One cannot escape death” when a town is affected by a disease and instead of helping his town the prince hides him self and his friends from the red death but he does not know that death is amongst them. The first literary element that Poe uses to show theme “One cannot escape death”…

What kind of man does Prince Prospero represent in the story?

Prince Prospero represents humankind’s pride, our arrogant and mistaken belief that we can somehow escape nature and cheat death.


What is ironic about the name Prince Prospero?

Why is Prince Prospero’s name ironic? Prosperous means to gain something and he died a terrible death. What is the general attitude of the courtiers towards the Red Death once they have retreated to Prince Prospero’s abbey?

How is Prince Prospero portrayed?

Personality. Prince Prospero is ruthless, wicked, decadent, flagitious, and sadistic. Prospero was born and raised a Satanist, and has a very cynical mindset on the topic of faith. He believes that God is the truly corrupt one and that Satan is the only God that truly lives on.

What does the masked figure symbolize?

The literal mask of the figure so closely represents the sickness that those who see him cannot differentiate between a person who is in costume and one who is afflicted and this is precisely what causes the spread of so much fear within the group.

What does Prospero mean in Masque of the Red Death?

Prince Prospero, symbolic of a rich person, shows that death is inevitable because even when he tries to hide away from the pestilence, he still ends up dying.

Related Posts