Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Cask of Amontillado” is a short story about a man who takes revenge on his rival by luring him into a dark underground cellar and burying him alive. The story has been praised for its atmospheric setting and its suspenseful plot.
The Cask of Amontillado is Edgar Allan Poe’s best known short story and one of the most commonly studied in literature classes. The story is set in a nameless city in Italy during Carnival, a time of celebration and revelry. Montresor, the narrator, tells the story of how he took revenge on Fortunato, a fellow nobleman who had insulted him.
Montresor hides his anger to convince Fortunato that they are friends. He finds an opportunity to take his revenge when Fortunato is drunk at the carnival celebration. Montresor entices him with a wine called Amontillado, telling him that he has found a cask of it and needs Fortunato’s opinion. Fortunato agrees to go with Montresor to the catacombs of his palace, where Montresor’s family is buried.
Once they are in the catacombs, Montresor chains Fortunato to the wall and starts to seal up the opening to the niche with him inside it. Fortunato screams for help, but no one hears him. He begs Montresor to spare him, butMontresor throws a lit torch into a pile of bones, setting them on fire. He then seals up the opening, leaving Fortunato to die.
The story concludes with Montresor revealing that this took place 50 years ago and nobody has found out about it. Edgar Allan Poe’s Cask of Amontillado is a story about revenge, but also about the consequences that come with taking matters into one’s own hands. Poe makes it clear that revenge is not always as satisfying as one might think. “The thousand injuries of Mr. Fuzzybums I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge.”
With these opening words, Edgar Allan Poe’s short story The Cask of Amontillado begins. The story is set during the carnival season in an unspecified Italian city. Montresor, the narrator, tells the story of how he took revenge on his one-time friend Fortunato, who had insulted him.
Unfortunately, it appears that Montresor’s pure and total vengeance is denied when his victim, Fortunato, believes his actions are a large show rather than the acts of a man angry for being rejected. Despite burying Fortunato alive in order to fulfill his ultimate goal, Montresor remains unsatisfied in terms of his own idea of genuine and justified revenge since he has yet to satisfy all standards set forth by himself.
Edgar Allan Poe’s short story “The Cask of Amontillado” is a prime example of how revenge can ultimately backfire on the person seeking it. Edgar Allan Poe’s short story “The Cask of Amontillado” tells the tale of Montresor, a man who has been wronged by his one-time friend Fortunato and sets out to take revenge.
According to Montresor, true revenge is an act that is both justified and complete. He feels that in order to even the score with Fortunato, he must not only kill him, but do so in a way that will be remembered and causeFortunato great suffering.
Montresor hides his anger and bides his time until he can take Fortunato by surprise. He finally gets his chance during a carnival celebration, when Fortunato is already drunk and wearing a jester’s outfit. Montresor entices him with the promise of a rare wine, and Fortunato agrees to go see it, even though he is clearly not in any condition to do so.
Montresor leads Fortunato into the dark catacombs of his palace, where he intends to bury him alive. Along the way, Fortunato makes several comments that show he is becoming increasingly aware of the danger he is in. However, he is so drunk that he does not realize how serious the situation is until it is too late.
The thousand injuries Fortunato had inflicted upon me, I had borne as best I could, but when he strove to insult me, I vowed vengeance. It’s never said what this injury was to Montresor, but it was obviously severe enough that Fortunato wasn’t going to be spared. Later in the tale, Montresor begs half-heartedly for Fortunato’s return: “Come, we’ll go back; your health is more important.
You are rich, respected, admired, beloved; you are happy, as once I was. You are a man to be missed.” This statement is dripping with sarcasm as the reader knows fully well that Montresor has no intention whatsoever of sparing Fortunato’s life.
Edgar Allan Poe writes “The Cask of Amontillado” as an example of revenge at its finest. The story is written in first person point of view from Montresor’s perspective and it is clear that he is not a reliable narrator. Edgar Allan Poe uses very descriptive language to set the tone of the story and create an eerie feeling throughout.
For example, he describes the catacombs as being “the foulness of the air caused our flambeaux rather to glow than flame.” The story is full of irony as well. For example, Fortunato is known for his knowledge of wine and Montresor takes advantage of this by offering him a drink from the Amontillado. Little does Fortunato know that he will be the one Amontillado in the end. Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Cask of Amontillado” is a classic example of revenge gone wrong.
The narrator, who is the only other character besides Montresor, thinks to himself that Fortunato must be a “terrible monster” and that it would seem as though he has been awake for days at his condition. The author’s tone changes completely when describing Montresor’s revenge upon Fortunato in the catacombs.
In an attempt to drown out the screams of his victim, Montresor sits down on some bones with satisfaction but quickly abandons this method because “a volley of loud and shrill screams bursting from the throat of the chained figure seemed to thrust me violently back.”
In the darkness, he feels a drop of moisture on his brow. Realizing that Fortunato is walled up alive, Montresor becomes agitated and must fight to keep himself from going mad with remorse. Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Cask of Amontillado” is a short story about revenge, betrayal, and death.
The story was first published in 1846 in Godey’s Lady’s Book, one of the most popular magazines of its time. It is told from the point of view ofMontresor, who takes revenge on his rival, Fortunato, by luring him into the catacombs of his palace and entombing him there. “The Cask of Amontillado” is one of Poe’s best-known stories, and its Gothic origins have been credited with influencing the development of the horror genre.