Edgar Allan Poe was born in Boston in 1809. Orphaned by the age of three, he was raised by John Allan, a prosperous Virginian merchant. Poe published his first volume of poetry while still a teenager. He worked as an editor for magazines in Philadelphia, Richmond and New York, and was a respected literary critic. In 1836 he married his thirteen year-old cousin, Virginia Clemm, whose illness and early death in 1847 is believed to have inspired much of her husband's work. It was only with the publication of his poem 'The Raven' in 1845 that Poe achieved national fame as a writer He died suddenly and mysteriously in 1849, aged just forty.