How Does Washington Irving Use Imagery In The Devil And Tom Walker

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Washington Irving, an 18th century author, wrote a short story based on the legend of Faust which he named “The Devil and Tom Walker”. In “The Devil and Tom Walker” Washington Irving uses imagery to establish mood. First, when Tom Walker takes a shortcut home through a swamp, Irving describes the swamp as follows “The swamp was was thickly grown with great gloomy pines and hemlocks, some of them ninety feet high, which made it dark at noonday, and a retreat for all the owls of the neighborhood. It was full of pits and quagmires, partly covered with weeds and mosses, where the green surface often betrayed the traveler into a gulf of black, smothering mud; there were also dark and stagnant pools, the abodes of the tadpole, the bullfrog, and the watersnake; where the trunks of pines and hemlocks lay half-drowned, half-rotting, looking like alligators sleeping in the mire.”(40-47). This quote is heavy with imagery as it paints the picture of a dark and dreary swamp in the reader's mind. By using phrases such as “dark at noonday” and “the green surface often betrayed the traveler into a gulf of black” this image creates a very eerie and dark tone. After Tom tells his wife about the Devil's deal she goes to …show more content…

He called her name repeatedly, but she was nowhere to be heard. The bittern alone responded to his voice, as he flew screaming by; or the bull-frog croaked dolefully from a neighboring pool. At length, it is said, just in the brown hour of twilight, when the owls began to hoot and the bats to flit about, his attention was attracted by the clamor of carrion crows hovering about a cypress-tree. He looked up and beheld a bundle tied in a check apron and hanging in the branches of the tree, with a great vulture perched hard by, as if keeping watch upon it. He leaped with joy, for he recognized his wife's apron, and supposed it to contain the household

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