The Cask of Amontillado is one of Poe’s most transparent short stories, every aspect of which in the background adds to the ultimate ironic effect. The unity of the short story and the plot is very straightforward. Montresor seeks vengeance on Fortunato for unspecified provocation by including him in his family’s vaults to inspect the wine he ordered. However, Montresor’s complot to maneuver Fortunato to pin him alive on the wall is callous. Every action and bit of dialog is factual throughout the entire story. The excerpt discusses the “Cask of Amontillado” from Fortunato’s perspective, thoughts during carnivals, and what Montresor articulates that interferes with Fortunato’s thinking.
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The brief narrative of the story is first told by an Italian courtesan who makes the reader feel confounded by giving them confidence in the morbid story of revenge. The perpetrator was Fortunato, who, according to the narrator, brought him a thousand wounds that he sustained patiently, but he swore a vengeance when Fortunato dared to taunt him (Poe, 2020). There has to be great revenge for Fortunato to be utterly conscious of anything happening to him and to be detected permanently by Montresor (Poe, 2020). To this end, Montresor waits for a supreme madness season of carnival – when Fortunato is especially weak – which was already half drifted and dressed as a chest. Montresor tells him that he has bought an Amontillado wine pipe, but he is not confident that he got the genuine one. He consults Fortunato, who is proud to be a wine specialist, and adds that he will go to Luchesi because Fortunato does not have free time.
Being aware of the ego of his prey, Montresor kissed him, claiming that Luchesi’s taste is as good as Fortunato’s, thus contending him and making him a fool (Poe, 2020). Montresor takes him to his empty palace and leads him into his relatives’ catacombs to drink together. Later, he follows Fortunato, whose jester’s balls wander grotesquely in a funeral atmosphere through underground passages with stacks of skeletons alternate with wine barrels (Poe, 2020). There is a small recess in the deeper crypt, where Montresor chains Fortunato to a couple of iron staples and then starts laying a stone and mortar wall that buried his enemy alive. When doing so, he celebrates his victim’s emotional torture, who then remains in the dark chained and faces his death in horror.
Montresor insists on returning to the festival after Fortunato’s coughing fit because he is anxious about the latter’s cold and steamy setting. However, Fortunato asserts that his cough will not kill him, although it would not dry. Montresor does not understand how close Fortunato is to death and how right he cannot kill him with his cough. Both men go with barrels and pouncing boxes across the piled-bones walls, which may supposedly be human remains. It is known from the footnote that castles are storage boxes for wine. The beverages and the bones then rest side by side, causing a startling juxtaposition. Moreover, Montresor points out that the niter hangs on the vault-like a mouse, almost as if the nicer was a cobweb king. Finally, the moisturizing falls of the river drip into the bones (Poe, 2020). Wine and bones were no longer the same as life and death. As if there were no distinction, the details and feelings help create an uncomfortable environment.
An inference is a logical prediction based on evidence; since it is not explicitly specified in the data, the individual has the information that contributes to the belief. The narrator appears to have struggled several times with Fortunato. Montresor is determined to return to Fortunato, and he is willing to do anything to make him pay for the sake of the unknown person. Particularly, he says, “I bore Fortunato’s thousand wounds, as I could best…” (Poe, 2020). He could make an error by taking vengeance and returning it to him.
In conclusion, “The Cask of Amontillado” is a great short story, displaying Poe’s stylistic characteristics in his writing. The title generates an overshadowed, horrific topic that puzzles the readers’ minds. Poe uses symbolism, irony, mystery, and horror as the atmosphere flows from liberation to confinement to add an imaginative aspect to history. The storyline is straightforward since it triggers Montresor, and Fortunato’s dilemma develops before the battle in catacombs.
Poe, E. A. (2020). The cask of amontillado (19th ed.). Primedia eLaunch.
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