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The Cask of Amontillado Review

The Cask of Amontillado Review

The Cask of Amontillado by Edgar Allan Poe

 

This short story by horror legend and genius, Poe, is perfect for Halloween.

 

The story takes place in Italy during Festival time. Our main character, Montresor, is offended by the insults his friend, Fortunato, has given to him and wants to kill him for revenge. Montresor draws a plan so brilliant and vicious that it has your heart racing the entire time. Montresor tricks his friend into thinking he bought a casket of a rare, tasteful wine, which Montresor has stored in the catacombs.

 

 

When Montresor has reached the place where he will kill Fortunato, a niche in the wall, Montresor tells Fortunato:

 

"Pass your hand," I said, "over the wall; you cannot help feeling the nitre. Indeed it is very damp. Once more let me implore you to return. No? Then I must positively leave you. But I must first render you all the little attentions in my power."

 

 

In Montresor’s words you clearly distinguish the urge Montresor possesses. Montresor starts building the wall, brick by brick, but then Fortunato’s drunkenness wears off and he lets out:

 

“A succession of loud and shrill screams, bursting suddenly from the throat of the chained form, seemed to thrust me violently back.”

 

And as odd as this story already is, Montresor:

 

“I replied to the yells of him who clamoured. Ireëchoed--I aided--I surpassed them in volume and in strength. I did this, and the clamourer grew still.”

 

Montresor continues building the wall. Until there is a single brick to be lastly put in, Fortunato speaks:

 

"Ha! ha! ha!--he! he! he!--a very good joke indeed--an excellent jest. We will have many a rich laugh about it at the palazzo--he! he! he!--over our wine--he! he! he!"

 

He thinks it is a joke! This character is clearly being murdered, trapped, and he starts to laugh. I found this truly astonishing and hilarious.

 

Montresor then calls for Fortunato again but he does not reply. Montresor plasters the last brick into place, and the last thing you hear of Fortunato is a jingle of bells.

 

 

I have read Poe’s works before, The Black Cat, Masque of the Red Death, etc. But the Cask of Amontillado has definitely become a favorite. The story was pure genius and has the perfect amount of eeriness, mental illness, betrayal, and creepy setting. If you have not read it yet please do yourself a favor and read it.  Thank you to Ms. Hannigan for introducing, not only me, but the entire freshman class to this story.

 

 

 

 

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