Edgar Allan Poe, outstanding romantic poet, critic, romancer and short story writer, was one of the first professional writers of the United States. He had a rare talent and in France and Russia of his days he was considered to be the only American poet of significance.
Edgar Poe was born in Boston (Massachusetts) in the poor family of second-rate actors. Both his parents died when the boy was two and he was brought up by John Allan, a very rich tradesman from Richmond (Virginia). Poe spent a year at Virginia University, a brief period in the US Army and as a cadet at the West Point Military Academy. A quarrel with Allan led him to a separation from his foster father and Poe had to provide for himself. He started writing and at first published his works in periodicals. Later they came out in separate editions. Poe's literary activities were various: he worked as a journalist, critic, poet, story writer, co-editor and editor of different magazines in Baltimore, New York, Philadelphia and elsewhere.
In 1836 Poe married a very young girl, Virginia Clemm. Their home was very happy, but soon his wife became ill. Edgar grew desperate because she had no money to cure her. Virginia died in January 1847, when she was only 24. At that time he was working on Eureka. His last poems were The Bells and Annabel Lee.
Poes life ended in strange circumstances: it was suspected that he had been given opium and robbed of money. He died in October 7, 1849.