The Cask of Amontillado Questions and Answers
by Edgar Allan Poe

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In "The Cask of Amontillado," is the narrator reliable or unreliable, and why?

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There is enough evidence to suggest that Montresor is certainly an unreliable narrator in Poe's classic short story "The Cask of Amontillado." In the opening paragraph of the short story, Montresor states that Fortunato had caused him a "thousand injuries" and "ventured upon insult," which apparently justify his motivation for seeking revenge. Montresor's reason for committing a horrific murder is vague, obscure, and ambiguous. He provides no solid evidence to support his decision, which is unsettling and problematic. If one were to even contemplate burying another person alive, there should certainly be legitimate evidence to even justify the thought of taking that person's life. However, Montresor simply glosses over Fortunato's "injuries" and assumes that his actions are warranted.

In addition to Montresor's vague reasoning for seeking revenge on Fortunato, the fact that Montresor commits murder is further evidence of his unreliability. One could argue that a sane, rational person...

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