Theme Of Symbolism In The Cask Of Amontillado

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Poe’s Use of Symbolism in “The Cask of Amontillado”

“The Cask of Amontillado” by Edgar Allan Poe is a tale of a person consumed by the desire for revenge. Poe attempts to rationalize Montresor’s plan from the very beginning as Montresor narrates his plot. “The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could; but when he ventured upon insult, I vowed revenge”. Poe never elaborates with specific details of how Fortunato insulted or wronged Montresor, but simply indicates that Montresor had finally reached the point of being unable to tolerate further offenses, and he devises a meticulous and long-anticipated plan for exacting revenge. Montresor feels he is justified in his plan, stating “I must not only punish, but punish
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Montresor had carefuuly planned his revenge for a time when the “madness of the carnival season” was in full swing. He encounters Fortunato wearing “…a tight-fitting parti-striped dress, and his head surmounted by a conical cap and bells”. Fortunato at this pint has been enjoying the atmosphere of the carnival and has already been drinking heavily. It merely takes the mention of the Amontillado, and he is ready to go immediately with Montresor to sample the wine. His attire is symbolic of the fool he becomes for falling into Montresor’s trap. In contrast, Montresor is described as “putting on a mask of black silk, and drawing a roquelaire closely about my person”. He wants to wear a disguise to blend in with the carnival atmosphere, yet not draw attention to himself in such a way that he would be easily identified. His attire is symbolic of the dark, sinister plan he has for …show more content…
Throughout this elaborate tale, Poe has used a myriad of symbolic elements to explain the diabolical plan of Montresor to exact revenge on Fortunato for the wrongs he felt were done to him. Montresor feels compelled to honor the family code of honor to uphold the family name and seek retribution for insults to the family name. Poe concludes with the symbolic words “In pace requiescat”, which translate “Rest in Peace”. With his revenge against Fortunato for the thousand grievances finally settled, Montresor can finally rest in peace knowing that he has settled the dispute. He feels he is exempt from any punishment or consequences of his actions against Fortunato. Poe effectively and cleverly uses symbolism throughout “The Cask of Amontillado” to develop his theme of

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