The Cask of Amontillado Questions and Answers
by Edgar Allan Poe

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Please discuss five examples of dramatic irony in Edgar Allan Poe's "The Cask of Amontillado."

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Poe's "The Cask of Amontillado" is rich in both verbal irony and dramatic irony, both of which help create a story in which the narrator.   Montresor, and his victim, Fortunato, inhabit an ironic universe, and this world creates a constant tension between what a character thinks should happen and what actually happens.  Dramatic irony is generally defined as irony in which a character knows less about his or her situation than the reader knows, creating situations that have a different outcome from the character's expectations.  It is as if we are watching a train moving relentlessly toward a brick wall, which one or more characters perceive as an open tunnel.  A wreck is the only outcome.

Poe sets up the framework of dramatic irony as early as the story's second paragraph, creating a web of false expectations for his victim:

It must be understood that . . . I continued as was my wont, to smile in his [Fortunato's] face, and he did not perceive that my smile was at the thought of his...

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