Witches In The Black Cat

Superior Essays
The Black Cat: Witches or Just Cats? I believe that both Pluto I and Pluto II are actually witches in the disguise of a black cat in the story, The Black Cat. It has been a well known superstition for hundreds of years that black cats are bad omens and are often witches. There has been a lifelong correlation between black cats and witches, in some instances the black cat is the witch’s favorite pet of choice and other cases the witch herself turns in a black cat. Therefore, it is not surprising as to why so many people, including myself, believe that the both of the Plutos are actually witches in the form of black cats. In The Black Cat, there are many instances that alluded to the belief that the cats were actually witches through both the …show more content…
First, the narrator told us of how his wife often mentioned how she believed that black cats were actually witches. The narrator said the following quote alluding to the fact that his wife was often very superstitious and believed that these cats were witches. “In speaking of his intelligence, my wife, who at heart was not a little tinctured with superstition, made frequent allusion to the ancient popular notion, which regarded all black cats as witches in disguise.” (Poe 1) In addition to being a black cat, Pluto’s own name also has a direct correlation to these speculations. Pluto is the Roman god of the underworld and it is no coincidence that once Pluto is killed that a huge fire erupts and it’s flames are described to look like hellfire of the depths of hell, all on the same day.
Aside from the speculations of the characters, there were also concrete facts and events that solidified the belief that these cats were witches. For instance, when the narrator killed Pluto I after feeling very guilty for cutting out the cat's eye prior to that night, the house coincidentally caught on fire and everything burned down except one wall where an imprint of black cat
…show more content…
When the narrator came home drunk at the end of the story, the cat got in the way just like what Pluto I did in the beginning of the story. The narrator once again got very angry and then tried to kill the cat just like what he did to Pluto I when he cut out it’s eye. When he went to kill Pluto II with an axe, his wife interfered and pulled the axe away. As a response, the narrator turned around and buried the axe into his wife’s skull, killing her instantly.
“I withdrew my arm from her grasp and buried the axe in her brain. She fell dead upon the spot, without a groan.” (Poe 5)
In order to conceal the body, he hid her in the wall and at some point while he was in the process of rebuilding the wall, Pluto II found a way into the wall without a sound and had went unnoticed by the narrator. After the murder, the narrator went to look for the cat but had no luck so he eventually gave up because for the first time in a very long time, he was finally able to sleep in peace without the burden of the cat or his wife.
“It did not make it’s appearance during the night -- and -- thus for one night at least, since it’s introduction into the house, I soundly and tranquilly slept; aye, slept even with the burden of murder upon my soul! (Poe

Related Documents

  • Decent Essays

    Many people relate the color black to sin, sadness, or lacking luck. They think that just because the color is black, that the cat is evil, although the cat can’t pick its own color. It is just a mixture of genetics from the cat’s parents and grandparents. Black cats are also portrayed as evil or mysterious creatures in scary or Halloween themed movies, because of the witch myth. Many people think that witches own black cats.…

    • 339 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Todorov Gothic Criteria

    • 2000 Words
    • 8 Pages

    Poe writes, “In speaking of his intelligence, my wife, who at heart was not a little tinctured with superstition, made frequent allusion to the ancient popular notion, which regarded all black cats as witches in disguise” (79). The narrator continues on and tells readers that he is an alcoholic and often times hurts the animals and his wife. He even goes as far as removing one of Pluto’s eyes and regretting it afterwards. One day he decided that he needs to complete his evil needs. The narrator says, “And then it came, as if to my final and irrevocable overthrow, the spirit of PERVERSENESS” (80).…

    • 2000 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    “My wife, who at heart was a little tinctured with superstition, made frequent allusion to the ancient popular notion, which regarded all black cats as witches in disguise” (838).after drinking excessively Poe hangs Pluto off one of the threes in their yard. That night their house catches on fire leaving nothing except for one of the walls. On the standing wall was an imprint of a cat that resembled Pluto. His mind fills with terror but quickly finds an explanation…

    • 665 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    He describes Pluto as a beautiful large black cat, however he makes note that all black cats are “witches in disguise”. He says the word witches because he is now labeling all black cats to be evil and are bad luck. Also, the short story says, “I alone fed him, and he attended me wherever I went about the house. It was even difficulty that I could prevent him from following me through the…

    • 746 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    When the cat almost tripped him, he went into a rage and tried to kill it, but his wife tried to stop him and became the victim of his fury (“The Black Cat” 120). “The Black Cat”s narrator’s madness is instant and wild, unlike the narrator of “The Tell-Tale Heart”, who is meticulous and cautious about his planning. The narrator of “The Tell-Tale Heart” had planned the murder for a week before following through (“The Tell-Tale Heart” 81). The two narrators may both be crazy, but it is not in the same way. Even though the narrators are not exactly alike, they do have things in common with themselves and with other narrators in Edgar Allan Poe’s…

    • 886 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Black Cat Unlucky

    • 1016 Words
    • 5 Pages

    However caused the numbers of rats increased, this is also one of the reasons that the Black Death quickly overspreading in all over Europe. In the fairy story, the witch always has a pet which is a black cat, but why? No one cares the reason back of the story, and letting the story circulates around the world in the different versions. After lasted for a long time, now all the people think that black cat is as mean as the cold-blooded witch. Actually, when you try to think it carefully, the answer is interesting.…

    • 1016 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The Witches had poisoned Macbeth in a way that no antidote but death can cure. After this little excerpt, they recite the first of the “double, double, toil and trouble…” lines. The next stanza is rather self explanatory. It talks about the wool of a bat, the tongue of dog, but then it mentions a blindworms sting.…

    • 1153 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Frau Trude And The Witches

    • 1009 Words
    • 5 Pages

    The two documents that will be discussed in this essay are Eyes Too Many, Frau Trude and The Witches’ Revenge. The accused witches in these stories are older woman due to their vulnerability. In the document Eyes Too Many the people believed widowed women were witches and under the influence of the devil. This takes place in Hiddestorf…

    • 1009 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    The titular character, a black cat, symbolizes bad luck and the narrator’s wife alluded to their superstition that “all black cats as witches in disguise.” The second’s cat white fur depicted the gallows, which draws attention to the theme of death, especially death by hanging. Despite the difference of the white fur, both cats in the story are strikingly similar, and they both lack an eye. Popular legend says that cats have nine lives, and the story seems to suggest this notion of reincarnation. Since black cats symbolize witchcraft, and witches are often burned, the fire that burns the narrator’s house down carries its own weight in symbolism as well. The fire occurs after Pluto’s murder, so it could be a punishment for killing a cat named after the god of the underworld that happens to symbolize bad luck and witches.…

    • 1332 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Cat People Film Analysis

    • 1891 Words
    • 8 Pages

    Irena was the monster here, and they made a big debate in society. They were used to women being the victim, but instead she was the one taken over and caused the havoc. Lastly, shadow play was the major part of the story without it the audience would have seen that Irena was the cat all along and people may have found the rest of the film quite dry and boring. With this the producer was able to draw the audience in and keep them guessing of what the cat looks like and what will happen next. Cat People overall is a film that is suspenseful and has the audience anticipating the next…

    • 1891 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Improved Essays