Why is the prince drawn to excessive luxury and merriment?  What details portray his obsessive nature in "The Masque of the Red Death"?

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People are often drawn to things that help them escape the realities of daily life.  For example, someone who works in a hectic city might like looking at pictures of the country or the mountains, and might travel to those places frequently.  What do you know about life outside of...

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People are often drawn to things that help them escape the realities of daily life.  For example, someone who works in a hectic city might like looking at pictures of the country or the mountains, and might travel to those places frequently.  What do you know about life outside of the castle walls?  What reality/events might the prince be trying to escape?

As for the prince's "obsessive nature", you need to find passages that prove that the prince is "over the top" when it comes to "luxury" and "merriment."  How is his castle itself over the top?  What about the entertainment for his party?  How about the costumes, decorations, etc?

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