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The Cask of Amontillado. By Edgar Allan Poe. Edgar Allan Poe January 19, 1809 – October 7, 1849. American writer, poet, editor and literary critic, considered part of the American Romantic Movement.

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The cask of amontillado

The Cask of Amontillado

By Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar allan poe january 19 1809 october 7 1849
Edgar Allan PoeJanuary 19, 1809 – October 7, 1849

  • American writer, poet, editor and literary critic, considered part of the American Romantic Movement.

  • Best known for his tales of mystery and the macabre, Poe was one of the earliest American practitioners of the short story and is considered the inventor of the detective-fiction genre.

  • He is further credited with contributing

    to the emerging genre of science fiction.

  • He was the first well-known American

    writer to try to earn a living through

    writing alone, resulting in a financially

    difficult life and career.

Poe s innovative and unusual use of words

  • Words are frequently used for the way they sound, as well as for their meanings.

  • Poe's rhythm and internal rhyme becomes almost hypnotic in many poems.

    • The difficult vocabulary reflects the

      style of Poe's time period.

      Every important word is intended to evoke a mood or atmosphere in the reader, and Poe aimed for the same effect regardless of whether the work was prose or poetry.

Poe s ability to instill fear in the reader
Poe's ability to instill fear in the reader

  • Poe builds suspense throughout the stories, revealing some facts while withholding others.

  • The narration is frequently first

    person, which makes the reader's

    connection to the story more intimate.

  • Poe's descriptions are usually

    Minutely detailed to give a sense of

    reality to the stories, despite their

    supernatural atmosphere.

Other ways that poe instills fear
Other ways that poe instills fear

  • The use of irony and black humor is common.

  • Gothic elements are usually prominent in his writing: the supernatural, evil animals, and dark, gloomy settings

  • Poe's depictions of how the human mind works heighten a reader's connection to the story.

  • The surprise endings provide a reason to go back through the work to look for clues missed on the first reading.

The cask of amontillado1
The Cask of Amontillado

  • The story is set in a nameless Italian city in an unspecified year and concerns the deadly revenge taken by the narrator on a friend whom he claims has insulted him. Like several of Poe's storiesthe narrative revolves around a person being buried alive

  • As in "The Black Cat" and "The Tell-Tale Heart", Poe conveys the story through the murderer's perspective.

  • First published in the November 1846 issue of Godey's Lady's Book.

Possible inspiration
Possible Inspiration

A legend holds that the inspiration for "The Cask

of Amontillado" came from a story Poe had heard

at Castle Island in Massachusetts when he was a

private there in 1827. According to this legend,

Poe was told the story of alieutenant named

Drane who killed another officer,named Massie,

by burying him alive.

A more likely though far less terrifying inspiration
A more likely, though far less terrifying inspiration

  • Poe wrote his taleas a response to his personal rival Thomas Dunn English.

  • Poe and English had several confrontations, usually revolving around literary caricatures of one another.

  • One of English's writings went a bit too far, and Poe successfully sued his editors at The New York Mirror for libel in 1846.

  • That year English published a revenge-based novel called 1844, or, The Power of the S.F.

  • It included a character named Marmaduke Hammerhead, the famous author of "The Black Crow", who uses phrases like "Nevermore" and "lost Lenore", referring to Poe's poem "The Raven".

  • In this parody, Poe was depicted as a drunkard, liar, and domestic abuser.