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Shvoong Home>Books>Mystery & Thrillers>Montresor in The Cask of Amontillado – Character Analysis Review

Montresor in The Cask of Amontillado – Character Analysis

Book Review   by:Smash334     Original Author: Edgar Allan Poe
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People have always been trying to explore human mentality, to figure out how the brain works. They have been particularly interested in psyche of madmen. Many writers also shared that interest and one of them was Edgar Allan Poe, who, in his “The Cask of Amontillado”, presents a character, whose insanity leads to a murder. His name is Montresor. Vowing revenge, because of some insult, which one of his acquaintances, Fortunato, ventured upon, he tells him, that he has bought a cask of what passes to be Amontillado, but, being not sure, whether it is really it, he wants his advice. He leads drunken Fortunato, who doesn’t suspect anything, to his vaults where he fetters him to the wall and then bricks him up in that niche. After fifty years, unpunished and probably not even suspected to be able to do such a thing, he tells this story. His insanity is caused by his inability to control emotions, which results in excessive sensitivity and cruelty. However, his logical brain, unlike the emotional one, still works properly, which makes him impossible to be recognized as mad. Montresors madness is a result of his problems with emotions. He easily gets angry and is very sensitive upon other’s people opinion about him. He is vain and proud, because of which unable to stand an insult, which, to his mind, damages his reputation. Because of his vanity and pride, he treats this as a serious hurt, although Fortunato doesn’t even suspect, that Montresor can want revenge for something he has done. On the other hand, for Montresor, this murder is something quite natural. Saying: “It is […] unredressed when the avenger fails to make himself felt as such to him, who has done wrong”, he admits that, in his opinion, his revenge is equally painful for Fortunato as the insult is for him. He also takes pleasure in others suffering. His murder is very cruel. Fortunato is fettered to the wall, without food and water, and with an illness, which makes him sensitive for the dampness of the vaults. During the whole story Montresor is also very ironical, saying, for example: “And I [drink] to your long life” and “We will go back; you will be ill and I cannot be responsible”. He also enjoys giving the clues about his plan to Fortunato, who doesn’t understand them.
Despite his madness and hate and anger overwhelming him, Montresor’s logical brain still works properly. His isn’t impulsive and his murder is carefully planned. He says: “At length I would be avenged. I must not only punish, but punish with impunity”. The whole murder is arranged in details. He tells his servants to take a day off, so that no one can see him going to the vaults with Fortunato. Knowing about Fortunato’s connoisseurship in wine, Montresor skillfully makes Fortunato eager to go with him, claiming that he has rare and precious Amontillado. Saying “I was silly enough to pay […] without consulting you in the matter” and then “As you are engaged, I’m on my way to Luchresi. If any one has a critical turn it is he”, Montresor takes advantage from Fortunato’s pride. Acting naturally he gives no reason for anybody, including Fortunato, to suspect him to be mad or to have bad will (“…neither by word or deed I had given Fortunato cause to doubt my good will.”). During the fifty years of keeping his secret to himself, no one considers him to be mad and the truth is revealed by him only before his death (“You, who so well the nature of my soul, will not suppose, however, that gave utterance to the threat”). Most of the time, he behaves as a normal person. Edgar Allan Poe in the “Cask of Amontillado” presents a madman, whose insane vanity and pride leads to a murder. Montresor is emotionally unstable, very sensitive about his reputation, and cruel, although his visible behavior seems to be natural and normal at the same time. He is also very intelligent – the cleverly and carefully planned murder hasn’t been discovered till his death. In spite of it, his revenge isn’t done with impunity. His punishment is his secret, from which he is released only on his deathbed.
Published: January 07, 2008   
Please Rate this Review : 1 2 3 4 5
  1. Answer   Question  :    Is he evil so? View All
  1. Answer   Question  :    ? View All
  1. Answer   Question  :    what supplies did Montresor need to execute his plan ? ( 1 Answer ) View All
  1. Answer  :    A trowel, the bricks, the chained wall place, and fortunado Friday, October 18, 2013
  1. Answer   Question  :    What made fortunato an easy prey for montressor? ( 1 Answer ) View All
  1. Answer  :    his own weakness! Saturday, December 15, 2012
  1. Answer   Question  :    how was montresor an insecure person View All
  1. Answer   Question  :    How did Montresor lie during the book? ( 1 Answer ) View All
  1. Answer  :    Read it idiot Monday, October 14, 2013
  1. Answer   Question  :    What was the conflict in the story? ( 1 Answer ) View All
  1. Answer  :    The conflict of the story was Fortunato insulted Montressor in some way because then Montressor wanted revenge. Thursday, April 18, 2013
  1. Answer   Question  :    what is the educational attainment of montresor? View All
  1. Answer   Question  :    why does montresor choose the carnival season to carry out his revenge View All
  1. Answer   Question  :    montresor's repeated warninga to fortunado to turn back because of damp? View All
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  1. 1. kev

    this poor analysis

    is this nonsense propaganda, idiocy, or ignorance of literature?!?!?

    0 Rating Monday, March 11, 2013
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