The Cats Of Ulthar

Essay by emehrzai1High School, 10th gradeB-, October 2014

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Elias Mehrzai

Mr. McFarlin

Honors English 10A, Period 5

7 September 2014

What Goes Around Comes Around

Plato once said that "We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light". Similarly, in "The Cats of Ulthar" by H.P. Lovecraft fear stops people from doing what is right. In the story, there is an old cotter and his wife who enjoy killing and torturing cats. This doesn't change until a boy, Menes, who's only family is his cat. He is from a tribe who practices black magic, and sends the town's cats to kill the couple after his cat is killed. Through foreshadowing, Lovecraft conveys his idea that all actions have consequences and through irony, it is shown that fear clouds one from seeing what is right or wrong.

One's cruel actions never go unpunished, as shown by Lovecraft's use of foreshadowing.

Menes, after his cat dies, begins to pray in an unknown tongue and the people do not notice "since their attention was mostly taken up by the sky and the odd shapes the clouds were assuming". It is now implied that the tribe practices black magic. Black magic is considered an evil force and brings bad things. This means that something bad is going to happen to the couple. When the cats are spotted at the couple's home they were "pacing very slowly and solemnly in a circle around the cottage" under a trance from Menes. The cats are going to take the offence and attack the old couple. Menes is looking for revenge and will stop at nothing. When the cats return home, they were "fat" and there is a "refusal of all the cats to eat their portions of...