In "The Cask of Amontillado," name three of Fortunato's weaknesses and explain how Montresor exploits them.

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It is of course a reflection on the criminal genius of Montresor that he knows his victim well enough to be able to plot how he can manipulate him through his weaknesses. Of course, his first weakness is his trust of Montresor. Montresor himself tells us that Fortuanto had no reason to doubt his friendship, even though Montresor tells us he had been "insulted" by Fortunato:

It must be understood that neither by word nor deed had I given Fortunato cause to doubt my good-will. I continued, as was my wont, to smile in his face, and he did not perceive that my smile now was at the thought of his immolation.

Of course, Fortunato believes Montresor and follows him into his catacombs - a very foolish decision.

The next weakness is stated directly by Montresor:

He had a weak point - this Fortunato - although in other regards he was a man to be respected and even feared. He prided himself on his connoisseurship in wine.

This allows Fortunato to be tempted down into the catacombs with the promise of tasting the eponymous cask of Amontillado.

Lastly, Fortunato's weakness is his susceptibility to dampness, which of course finishes him off. Note how he coughs more and more as he and Montresor descend deeper and deeper into the catacombs.

This story thus charts an act of supposed revenge, but one carried out by someone who is able to use his opponent's weaknesses to help him in destroying his enemy.

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The Cask of Amontillado

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