Poe's Stories

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Madeleine Usher Character Analysis

The unfortunate twin sister of Roderick Usher, she is infected with the same inherited disease that seems to come from the House of Usher itself. As Roderick becomes more and more manic and depressed, Madeleine feels the physical effects and becomes bed-ridden, as if the siblings share the same spirit somehow. Madeleine, by the end, is a paranormal figure, stuck somewhere between death and life, and fittingly, her final collapse into death, causes her brother’s death too, and that of their family line.
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Madeleine Usher Character Timeline in Poe's Stories

The timeline below shows where the character Madeleine Usher appears in Poe's Stories. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
The Fall of the House of Usher
Rivals and Doppelgangers Theme Icon
The Dead and the Living Theme Icon
The Gothic Style Theme Icon
Self, Solitude, and Consciousness Theme Icon
...can be attributed to a more comprehensible cause, the long term illness of his beloved sister, his only remaining relative and companion. He talks about her with unbearable dread, and just... (full context)
Rivals and Doppelgangers Theme Icon
The Dead and the Living Theme Icon
The Gothic Style Theme Icon
The lady ’s disease is unexplained. She seems to be gradually wasting away. She had been able... (full context)
Rivals and Doppelgangers Theme Icon
The Dead and the Living Theme Icon
The Gothic Style Theme Icon
Self, Solitude, and Consciousness Theme Icon
...mind. One evening, while they are engaged in reading, Usher suddenly tells the narrator that Madeleine has died and it is his plan to keep her body preserved for a fortnight... (full context)
The Dead and the Living Theme Icon
The Gothic Style Theme Icon
As Usher’s closest companion now, the narrator of "House of Usher" helps him to move the lady ’s coffin into the dark, musty vault. This particular room is directly underneath the narrator’s... (full context)
Rivals and Doppelgangers Theme Icon
The Dead and the Living Theme Icon
The Gothic Style Theme Icon
Self, Solitude, and Consciousness Theme Icon
...the narrator of "House of Usher" is surprised to find a striking resemblance between the sister and brother. Usher tells him that they were twins, and shared a bond that can’t... (full context)
Rivals and Doppelgangers Theme Icon
The Dead and the Living Theme Icon
The Gothic Style Theme Icon
Self, Solitude, and Consciousness Theme Icon
...too. He feels this way especially one night about a week after they have entombed Madeleine, when he goes to bed and cannot sleep. He tries to believe that it is... (full context)
The Dead and the Living Theme Icon
The Gothic Style Theme Icon
Self, Solitude, and Consciousness Theme Icon
...shudders and begins murmuring. He says he has heard it all, and he knows that Madeleine has been buried alive. Even days ago, he heard the first movements from deep in... (full context)
Rivals and Doppelgangers Theme Icon
The Dead and the Living Theme Icon
The Gothic Style Theme Icon
Self, Solitude, and Consciousness Theme Icon
Usher describes Madeleine coming up the stairs, the sound of her heart, and then, in an absolute frenzy... (full context)