The Cask of Amontillado Analysis Edgar Allan Poe

Essay by jade040589High School, 11th grade January 2009

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1.SummarizationEdgar Allan Poe's, "The Cask of Amontillado," draws the reader, whoenjoys dark and morbid tales, into experiencing the diabolic schemes of a murderer's mind and soul. He shows us that insulting words can chisel away at a man's sanity. "The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as best I could, but when he ventured upon insult, I vowed revenge." These are the opening words of Montresor, a cunning and vile individual, who carries a grudge against Fortunato. One evening during carnival season, the heavily intoxicated Fortunato greets Montresor with excessive amiability. Montresor is pleased to find his friend, or should I say foe, in such good spirits. Fortunato is oblivious to Montresor's true feelings as he is led through a series of, "insufferably damp," vaults beneath Montresor's palazzo for a promise of a taste of precious Amontillado wine that Montresor has just purchased. The dampness and nitre that fill the air causes Fortunato to cough incessantly.

Montresor offers a bottle of Medoc to relieve Fortunato's cough, but in reality it is to keep him intoxicated. "At the most remote end of the crypt there appeared another less spacious." It was here that Montresor tells Fortunato that the Amontillado is kept. At this point Fortunato was extremely intoxicated, and unable to resist Montresor's strength as Montresor easily chains him to two iron staples on the wall. Unbelievably, Fortunato's only reply is, "The Amontillado." Montresor echoes back, "the Amontillado." Now in the final stage of his plan, Montresor uncovers the stone and mortar that he uses to close up the entrance of the niche. Fortunato's intoxication begins to wear off as Montresor finishes the seventh tier of the wall. Fortunato makes, "A succession of loud and shrill screams," causing Montresor to have second thoughts, only to surrender instantly...