Where did Montresor and Fortunato go when they were looking for Amontillado in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

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coachingcorner eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In the short story "The Cask of Amontillado" by Edgar Allen Poe, the author has the victim lured underground. The reason the victim goes along so willingly with the invitation is that he is used to going there. Both he and the murderous narrator share a hobby/passion/business which involves sampling or collecting the finest wines, sherries or ports. They are well used to visiting catacombs or caves under streets and houses as that is where the most ambient temperature for storing wine has been for centuries. It is not surprising to the unwary victim to be invited down there to sample wine. Somewhere along the line, there has been a slur or some sort of insult that he seems to have forgotten, but the murderer (whose wine production goes back centuries) hasn't.

epollock | Student

They end up in the catacombs or vaults. The setting is vital to the story, from the bizarre descriptions of the carnival and then the gloomy vaults. Poe's interest in describing the horror of the vaults is to cultivate reactions of repulsion and dread. One might raise the question of how Montresor could have kept the cement wet enough to work with a trowel during the time before he brings Fortunato into the vaults, but perhaps that would be carping. It is interesting to note the description of the walled area where Montresor imprisons Fortunato: "a still interior recess, in depth about four feet, in width three, in height six or seven" (paragraph 68). This wall recess corresponds closely to the measurements of a coffin.

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The Cask of Amontillado

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