Even after his mysterious death in 1849, the poet and author Edgar Allan Poe remained controversial. Not just for the twisted tone of his chilling tales of terror, or the dark melancholy that haunted his romantic verse, but also for the turbulent life that informed them. During his lifetime, and just after his death, the many enemies Edgar provoked with his waspish tongue, responded by condemning him as a deviant and drunk, even a lunatic and drug addict. In the subsequent century, respected literary critics continued the cacophony of calumny, loftily dismissing his work as immature, clumsy, or even simply irrelevant.
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