Use Of Irony In The Cask Of Amontillado

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Edgar Alan Poe was revolutionary in the field of cerebral, gothic fiction. His use of irony in his short stories had already become legendary by the time “The Cask of Amontillado” was written. In every line of Amontillado, Poe uses irony to set a somber and gloomy backdrop for the characters involved. A troubled alcoholic, Poe composed “The Cask of Amontillado” shortly after the death of his wife and before his mysterious death two years later. Irony defined is a playful use of words to convey a meaning that is opposite of its literal meaning, although no playfulness can be found in Poe’s Amontillado, the vehement use of irony brings forth Poe’s trademark style. In “The Cask of Amontillado” we see Poe’s mournful irony that leaves the audience/reader…show more content…
This “crypt – like area” had obviously been used before and the bones that had been removed may have been the decaying bodies of the earlier victims trapped there in the past. Montresor was able to chain Fortunato up within the opening and before he realized what was occurring, Fortunato was being walled into his very own grave. Poe builds a wall of suspense with each layer of bricks that Montresor lays, “…a very good joke, indeed…” a frightened Fortunato says, “Let us be gone.” Not realizing the danger that he is in and that his life is about to end Fortunato makes a joke out of what is occurring, which pushes Montresor to cruelly reply, “Yes let us be gone.” Both men know that there is only one of them walking out of the damp, bone ridden catacombs alive. Montresor tortures Fortunato psychologically when there is one brick left by calling to him, drawing attention to what is occurring to him, he wants to hear Fortunato’s cries for help and mercy. Montresor becomes “heartsick” but not at the loss of his friend or enemy but at the “dampness of the catacombs that made it so.” This shows the depravity and lack of compassion that Montresor has for Fortunato, he is not bothered by the death, but only the dampness of the catacombs. The story ends with a final jab by author Poe “In pace requiescat!” or “May he rest in peace!” Considering that Fortunato was buried alive without food, water or air, an easy death was not to be had rather he would suffer for a long time before death finally overtook
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