El Dorado Essay

Title: How does the idea of time appear in literature ? Historical events deepens the understanding of the reader, and goes back in time to allow the characters to gain experience that influence the present. This means that the bigger and profound sense of the historic past is interesting versus getting away from the present and the tension and pressure. Similarly in “El Dorado” by Edgar Allan Poe, the “knight” is on a journey and experiences a time shift from present into the future, and gets closer to death.

This shows how the setting of some stories has a stimulating force in human behavior. Edgar Allan Poe’s poem “El Dorado” identifies the speaker’s quest to death. The “knight” is a man, in which is searching for a place called ‘El Dorado’. As months, then years passes by, the knight grows older and gains maturity, and still does not manage to locate this place. As he continued on with his journey, his strength gets worse, and realized that he wasn’t going no where and became depressed and was in despair, which is mentioned in Line 9, “And –o’er his heart a shadow”.

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In Line 19-21 it states “Over the Mountains of the Moon, Down the Valley of the Shadow”, means that the knight didn’t make it. Edgar Allan Poe makes time run out on the man, which led the knight to give up and die. He also wants his readers to know that time doesn’t wait on nobody. In “El Dorado,” there are many literary mechanism which allows the readers to imaginately move through time. Edgar Allan Poe focuses on ideas such as diction, imagery, tone, symbolism and theme.

The theme of this poem is the pathway to death. The author uses a formal diction to create a sad and depressed tone. The formal words are “sunshine” and “shadows”. The denotation of sunshine is the light of the sun. Shadow is denoted as a shade cast upon a surface by something blocking light. Sunshine is connoted with knowledge, happiness, and Heaven. However, the connotation of shadow is death, darkness, and depression. The author gets closer to the readers by engaging them with the knight and by creating imagery.

These words “Down the Valley of the Shadow” includes descriptive words that gives off information about where the journey has led the knight and identifies the set of time. In line 19-21 it mentions “Over the Mountains of the Moon”. Mountains is a land higher that a hill which can be a symbol of challenges, or obstacles. However, the moon is a symbol of light, and time. By using imagery, diction and tone empowers the reader to live in two different times. How does the author’s skill of time contributes to the effectiveness of the work ?

First of, time is highly effective in nature and plays an important role in technology. Authors, such as Edgar Allan Poe uses time, to make the readers continue to engage themselves with the character and the issues with which the characters are faced with. Based on “El Dorado” the journey across time, in which the knight is apart of an unhappy experience. The author allows the readers to forget about life and relax, and realize the struggle of human existence from a more spacious and reflective perspective.

Edgar Allan Poe remembers that time can help readers to unfold insights into the human conditions and capture the essence of their deepest dreams, emotions, and fears. Edgar Allan Poe uses time in a distinct way in his poem “El Dorado”. Time shifts from present to the future, which gives his readers opportunities to compare the historical context of stories with their own lives that aid them to identify the “universal truths”, and to recognize that some aspects of life, surely changes over time.


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