Cask of Amontillado Thesis Theme

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In The Cask of Amontillado, Edgar Allen Poe displays the theme of revenge. In the story, Montressor narrates the story and feels he has been wronged by Fortunado and vows for vengeance against him. Montressor attempts to justify his future crime to the reader. “A wrong is unredressed when retribution overtakes its redresser. It is equally unredressed when the avenger fails to make himself felt as such to him who has done the wrong.” (Poe 101) Fortunado is unaware of the wrong he caused Montressor by insulting him. Montressor feels that this is reason enough for his retribution. “The thousand injuries of Fortunado I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed for revenge.” (Poe 101) The thought of revenge is not only the plot to the short story, but also the underlying theme that Poe supports throughout.

An internal conflict of pride is a major element to the story. Fortunado thinks of himself on being a connoisseur of fine wine. The thought of Montressor seeking outside help in Luchresi for a wine tasting practically infuriates Fortunado. “Luchresi cannot tell Amontillado from Sherry.” (Poe 101) This causes Fortunado to be easily manipulated into following Montressor deep into his family vaults underneath his home. Fortunado’s pride even causes him to ignore his own health as moves deeper into the catacombs, “the cough is a mere nothing; it will not kill me. I shall die of a cough.” (Poe 102) The pride in Fortunado ultimately leads to Montressor fulfilling his plot of revenge to the point of Fortunado walking into his own resting place. “It was in vain that Fortunado, uplifting his dull torch, endeavored to pry into the depth of the recess.” (Poe 104) Montressor’s pride is shown when he finally corners Fortunado and locks him up before he lays bricks, blocking him in the recess. “I will first render you all the little attentions in my power.” (Poe 104) He finally is satisfied with the preceding outcome that he finally...
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