Show MoreA man clever and ruthless, but when one gets to know him one will realize he is a conceited murderer. The man that fits the description is Montresor, a fictional character created by Edgar Allan Poe. He is of noble venetian descent but other than that not much else is known about him. He is the villainous antagonist who illustrates the theme of a perfect revenge. In the story The Cask of Amontillado he exacts his perfect revenge without impunity upon his victim, Fortunato. This man, Montresor is cunning and manipulative, as he'll get what he wants through trickery or deception. Montresor is sly because he notes that Fortunato is proud for being such a renowned wine connoisseur; therefore he utilizes this exploit to lure him into…show more content…
He also needed the time to plan the perfect revenge where he will punish with impunity and make it fail safe. With perfection in mind, he lays out all the items that are necessary for the revenge, such as the following: a stack of bricks, a trowel, Medoc for the drunkard Fortunato and chains to lock him up. He also had the careful tolerance to accommodate Fortunato, his sworn enemy, in order to carry out his plan and make his retribution even sweeter because then, he would be able to taunt and enjoy his revenge even more alone at a secure location where he wouldn’t get caught. Simply stated, he imperturbably prolongs the swift murder he could have brought upon Montresor to reap more satisfaction. Montresor's personality is very complex, but the most defining trait is probably selfishness. The insult that Fortunato said was not described, but for Montresor to have such ego that the reason for murder is the result of a petty insult is another example of how much he values himself. Montresor is a well-established man with a heir to a family fortune, he is in no doubt financially secure; therefore, one would reason why he couldn't have hired a assassin to do the job. Thus, he wouldn't run the risk of getting caught. “A wrong is ... undressed when the avenger fails to make himself felt as such to him who has done the
"The Cask of Amontillado" is a story of revenge, but the reader is never told exactly what Fortunato did to warrant such vengeance. In fact, throughout the story, the reader gradually realizes that Montresor is an unreliable narrator; that whatever insult Montresor believes Fortunato committed is probably imagined or exaggerated. It's certain that Fortunato has no idea of Montresor's anger, and this makes the story even more tragic and frightening. The seemingly happy jangling of the bells on the top of Fortunato's cap become more and more sad the deeper the two venture into the catacombs.
In the beginning of the story, Montresor defines revenge. He says he must "punish with impunity." He states if the avenger is caught, or does not make the punishment known to he who committed the wrong, the wrong goes unavenged.
With this in mind, he sets the trap for Fortunato. He gives Fortunato numerous opportunities to back out, using the tricks of classic conmen by playing on Fortunato's greed and pride. In fact, it is Fortunato who insists they carry on to find the Amontillado, and this will no doubt torture him as he is buried alive. Montresor also provides hints as to what he plans to do with Fortunato. He seemingly miraculously comes up with a cask of Amontillado during carnival, which Fortunato can scarcely believe. He tells Fortunato, "You are a man to be missed," and after Fortunato says he won't die of a cough, Montresor agrees. His family motto is "No one insults me with impunity" and he is carrying a trowel. Yet Fortunato suspects nothing, and is so shocked when Montresor chains him to the wall, he doesn't even try to fight.
The structure of the story places the events 50 years in the past. Montresor, perhaps on his own deathbed, is telling someone, perhaps a priest, the story, but not with any remorse. He still believes Fortunato wronged him, and at the end eerily says "In pace requiescat," or "May he rest in peace."