The Cask of Amontillado Questions and Answers
by Edgar Allan Poe

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How is allegory represented in "The Cask of Amontillado?"

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On the whole, Poe was somewhat hostile to the use of allegory . However, in writing about Hawthorne, he did say that allegory was permissible so long as it was "judicially subdued, seen only as a shadow or by suggestive glimpses." One could see Montresor's family crest as an example of just such a subtle use of allegory. The crest depicts a human foot crushing the head of a serpent. A number of critics have interpreted this image in traditionally Christian terms as Christ vanquishing the devil, who of course took on the form of a serpent in the garden of Eden when he tempted Eve. Some other critics, however, have disagreed with this assessment, seeing the story as a recreation...

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