Saturday, June 25, 2016

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The Cask of Amontillado Question and Answer for your Assignments

What is the meaning of the phrase “A wrong is unredressed when retribution overtakes its redresser”?
  • This means that to obtain the perfect revenge one has to execute their revenge with such perfection that they can successfully perform it without being caught. In this case Montresor is talking about getting revenge on Fortunado for insulting him. He wants to get even with Fortunado and then some by killing him as revenge. But if he is caught and arrested then Fortunado really wins so he has to get revenge with ease. 
  • The way I see it, Motesor is saying that when taking revenge on someone, you have to “one up” them, doing something even worse than what they did to you for you to seek revenge. 
Why did Montresor seek revenge on Fortunato?
  • Montresor wanted revenge on Fotunado because Forunado insulted him one too many times. He wanted to “one up” him so to speak by killing him as his perfect revenge. 
  • It seems that Fortunato did bad things to Montresor before but it was physically. Montresor made no attempt to avenge himself but as soon as Fortunato insulted him, Montesor wouldn’t allow that and is now seeking revenge.
How did Montresor know that the house would be empty?
  • Montresor knew the house would be empty because the Italian carnival was going on and all of the house servants would be out partying. He cleverly used this to his advantage to lure Fotunado back to his house to get his revenge. 
  • Montresor knew the house would be empty because he used reverse phycology to get his attendants to go celebrate at the carnival when after he left. He said he wouldn’t be back and to stay at the house. This only further encouraged the attendants to leave after he left.
Where had the stone and mortar, used by Montresor to wall up the entrance to the niche, been hidden?
  • The stone and mortar was hidden in a crypt deep within the catacombs. He revealed to Fortunado that he was a mason, or stone builder, moments before chaining him up. 
  • The stone and mortar used by Montresor to wall in Fortunato was beneath a pile of bones where they lay hidden. 
In your own words, describe the catacombs that Fortunato is led through.
  • The catacombs are eerie, creepy dark caves dug out and lined with bones and buried humans. They are long tomb-like caverns that were damp and stuffy and could cause someone an awful coughing fit. They also led to a crypt with a mound of bones and dead-end niches where bodies were buried. 
  • I would describe the catacombs as dangerous, ominous, and suspicous. The catacombs were dangerous as is because of the nitre gas. It was ominous and suspicious because of the amount of bones and skeletons lay strewn about.
Where and when is the story set? Give reasons for your answer.
  • The story is set in Italy the day before Ash Wednesday, which is known as Mardi Gras in America. There is a carnival going on and the year in which the story takes place is unknown since the Italian carnival still exists today. 
  • If I was to give my best guess, I would say maybe eighteenth or nineteenth century. Their vocabulary is what I am mainly going on. Also the use of torches dates the story to sometimes probably before electricity.
Why does Montresor make sure Fortunato has drunk a lot of wine?
  • He wants to get Fortunado buzzed or a little drunk so he’ll be calm and his reactions will be slowed. Since alcohol is a depressent it slows down the body and if Fortunado is calm and stationary then he is easier to trap and keep dazed. Also, Fortunado was affected by the nitre in the catacombs and used wine as a medoc to keep it under control. 
  • This makes Fortunato even more vulnerable both physically and mentally enough to the point that he could chain him up before sealing him in.
What is Luchesi’s role in the story?
  • Luchesi is a wine expert who Montresor threatens to go to for advice when trying to capture Fortunado’s attention. Montresor claimed to have Amontillado, which is a rare wine. He boasted about it to Fortunado, who was eager to go to Montresor’s house to see it. Montresor says he’ll ask Luchesi for help instead to make sure he could lure Fortunado into his trap. Fortunado bad mouths Luchesi and insists on going to Montresor’s to see the wine. 
  • Luchesi is part of Montresor’s plan on persuading and encouraging Fortunato to come with him. 
What preparations had Montresor made for his revenge?
  • He prepared a fake story about having Amontillado to lure Fortunado to his house and he also set a shovel and lots of mortar and stone in a crypt deep within his catacombs where he would lead Fortunado. He planned to bury him alive within a wall of stone. 
  • Montresor clearly planed his revenge out. He hid the stone and mortar under bones also before even leading Fortunato down to the cellar. He also planed the timing. He was able to have it so no one would know of Fortunato’s disappearance before it was too late because everyone was celebrating. 
Why does Montresor appear concerned about Fortunato’s health?
  • Montresor is concerned with Fortunado’s health because he wants to be the cause of his death, not a cough. Plus he doesn’t want Fortunado to turn back and if a cough kills Fortunado then Montresor isn’t truly getting revenge. 
  • I can only think of two reasons to why Montresor would be at all concerned about Fortunato’s health. I think that he wanted to make sure Fortunato was well enough to know what he would do to him. Also I think he also wanted Fortunato to suffer in the wall after he seeled it off.
Do you think Montresor should have killed Fortunato? Why or why not?
  • I don’t think Montresor should have killed Fortunado because just because somebody insults you doesn’t mean you go and kill them. There is obviously a mental issue with Montresor if he can’t handle insults. If someone would be murdered everytime they insulted someone then there would be no more humans. He is probably psychotic or insecure if he murders somebody because they insult him. 
  • I can only say that I wouldn’t have if I was Montresor. Otherwise, Poe made Montresor a vengeful character to develop the story. Without Montresor’s desire for revenge, there would be no story.
What do you think Fortunato might have done to make Montresor want such a diabolical revenge?
  • Although personally I don’t think any act could drive someone to murder another human, Fortunado must have really done Montresor wrong if Montresor had plans to bury him alive. He must have talked badly of Montresor on several occasions and ruined his reputation for Montresor to want to kill him. He may have hurt Montresor’s feelings or spread lies about him and Montresor thought that to protect his pride he’s have to kill him. 
  • It says at the begining of the story that Fortunato insulted Montresor. Others may seek revenge but not one severe as death but Montresor must have had his pride hurt. Many men do not like getting their pride hurt.
In your opinion, did Montresor have to kill Fortunato? Is their any other way Montresor could have handled this situation? Explain
  • I think many alternative solutions could have and should have been exercised rather than murder. They could have talked it out, had an argument, Montresor could have ignored Fortunado, or even got into a physical altercation with him. Most things would have been better than killing him in my opinion. 
  • Montresor could have handled the problem better with a simple conversation or discussion but decided to turn to getting revenge. I would have done differently but Montresor is a vengeful person and there would be no story if he just talked it out with Fortunato.
Do you think Montresor's crime will ever be discovered? Why or why not?
  • I don’t think his crime will ever be discovered because well, for starters, Fortunado’s body was hidden in a niche covered by a wall of stone deep within dark catacombs. The odds are extremely low of anyone discovering Fortunado’s body. Also, at the end of the story Montresor says, “For the half century no mortal has disturbed them.” He is referring “them” as the bones and bodies in the catacombs. If 500 years passed with nobody finding the bones or bodies then I don’t think anyone will. Montresor performed the crime with such precision and efficiency that you wouldn’t have seen it coming. 
  • I highly doubt that his crime would ever be discovered becuase he planned it out so thoroughly. No one saw Fortunato enter his house and even if they did search his cellar and his house, they wouldn’t find anything but catacombs and a new wall. No one would suspect a thing. 
Select the best answer in each questions. Second answer is from Dana Xu. 


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