The Cask Of Amontillado – Irony and Symbolism

It is Edgar Allan Poe’s intense use of symbolism and irony all through the Cask of Amontillado that establishes the brief story as an indeed interesting candidate worthy of thorough analysis. The skillful use of these devices are utilized by the author to produce this horrific and suspenseful masterpiece.

The Cask of Amontillado is a horror brief story, which revolves about the themes of revenge and pride. The plot requires two guys: Montresor, the narrator, who is an Italian aristocrat in search of revenge against the second most important character: Fortunato, a proud man that boasts about his conoisseurship of wines and who lastly walks to his own death.

Irony is a manner of expression via which words or events convey a reality distinctive from and even opposite to look or expectation. The use of such device in the story gives it with humour and wit, and makes the piece much more sophisticated. The sustained irony is detected by means of style, tone and the clear use of exaggeration of Montresor, the narrator.

From the really beginning we notice the apparition of irony in the story. The extremely name Fortunato would clearly imply that this is a man of good fortune, when the actual case is that he is about to suffer a mostly untimely demise: the end of his life. The setting in which the story takes place once more shows an ironic element. It is for the duration of Venice’s Carnival that the characters meet. Carnival is supposed to be a time of celebration and happiness for everybody. However, in the tale it is a time for revenge and death. The atmosphere alterations drastically when the two protagonists leave the gaiety of carnival for the gloomy and desolate catacombs beneath Montresor’s palazzo. We find out from the narrator that when he very first meets Fortunato the latter has apparently been drinking and is dressed in a lot of colours, resembling a jester. His costume suggests that he will be the one particular playing the fool. On the other hand Montresor is dressed in a black-coloured cloak and has his face covered with a black mask. At this point one particular can mention the presence of symbols: the black mask and outfit could possibly be a representation of Death or the devil. Such figure foreshadows the events taking spot later that night in the damp catacombs.

The way the narrator treats his enemy is one of the clearest examples for ironic components. When the characters meet, Montresor realises that…

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