Brick by Brick

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Brick by Brick

A Cask of Amontillado, by Edgar Allan Poe

Irony: Poe uses irony throughout the story. Montressor's constant concern for Fortunato's heath and welfare is a perfect example, because Fortunato's heath really does not matter. Montressor is getting ready to murder him.

Literary Criticism "The Cask of Amon-tillado" by Edgar Allan Poe, is an outstanding example of dramatic irony in American Literature. Irony may be utilized as verbal or dramatic and this story involves both of these forms. There are different levels of irony at play in this story. Poe cleverly weaves this story so that he has perfect control of the narrative while allowing the reader some freedom in their own interpretations as well. The basis of the story is best stated as "The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult, I vowed revenge." and " 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." Essentially, It is a tale of revenge. It does not matter whether or not the author reveals how Fortunato insulted Montresor. The story is just as effective with a bit of mystery behind it because it allows the reader the "freedom" to decide how Montresor was wronged.Are Montresor and Fortunato friends or foes? Here is the first case of irony. While we all know the outcome of this story, Montresor refers to Fortunato as "My friend" and pretends concern for his health and about his making the trek to the vaults as they are "insufferably damp. They are encrusted with nitre." The irony here is that we all know that Montresor does not really care about the well-being of Fortunato because he is planning to kill him. Throughout the story, Montresor continues to refers to Fortunato as "friend." Poe employs the use of irony in the selection of Fortunato's name by giving the very character who is doomed to die such a fortunate name. The very comment "My dear Fortunato, you are luckily met." is one of the most ironic statements of the whole story, because if he had not run into Montresor at all that fateful evening, perhaps he would have had much better luck and been much more fortunate.

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