illustration of Fortunato standing in motley behind a mostly completed brick wall with a skull superimposed on the wall where his face should be

The Cask of Amontillado

by Edgar Allan Poe

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The mood and tone in "The Cask of Amontillado."

Summary:

The mood in "The Cask of Amontillado" is eerie and suspenseful, while the tone is dark and ominous. Edgar Allan Poe creates a sense of foreboding through the unsettling atmosphere of the catacombs and the sinister intentions of Montresor, which keeps readers on edge throughout the story.

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What are examples of mood and tone in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Montresor's rather diabolical nature is conveyed as early as the first paragraph of the text when he explains his philosophy regarding revenge. He says that he

must not only punish, but punish with impunity. A wrong is unredressed when retribution overtakes its redresser. It is equally unredressed when the avenger fails to make himself felt as such to him who has done the wrong.

He goes on to say that he continues to smile in the face of his enemy, never giving the man cause to doubt his good will or friendship, and Montresor says that Fortunato "did not perceive that [Montresor's] smile now was at the thought of [Fortunato's] immolation." These descriptions help to establish an ominous mood of foreboding, in part, by creating dramatic irony. The reader knows that Montresor plans to destroy Fortunato, but Fortunato himself does not know, and this irony makes for a very tense mood.

In terms of tone, which refers to how the author feels about the subject of the text, it would seem that Poe's tone is rather knowing or matter-of-fact and, perhaps, even a little judgmental. Montresor claims to be speaking to someone who he says "well know[s] the nature of [his] soul" and, later, that it has been "half of a century" since he committed this heinous act of revenge. He evidently believes that he has gotten away with the revenge, that he has incurred no negative consequence as a result of it—just as he specified he must early on in the telling of the story—but one might argue that there are grounds to suggest that he has been punished by his own guilt. First, he could be confessing to a priest on his deathbed, as why else would he tell the story now? If he wishes to be absolved and forgiven, then he must be feeling the weight of guilt on his conscience. Second, Montresor admits that, when Fortunato ceased to speak from behind the wall, his own "heart grew sick," and he "struggled with [the] weight" of the final stone. He chalks up the feeling of sickness to the dampness of the catacombs, but this dampness has not bothered him before, and he has just bricked an entire wall without struggling with a single stone's weight. Poe punishes him with his own conscience, nullifying his revenge and making Montresor just a simple murderer.

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What are examples of mood and tone in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Much like in Poe's "The Tell-Tale Heart," the narrator of "The Cask of Amontillado" begins by telling the reader of their murderous intention. This creates tension for the rest of the story, as the reader knows what will eventually come, even when the narrator's victim does not. By setting the action during the Venetian carnival and putting his characters in costume, Poe accentuates the story's pervasive mood of eerie macabre as well as its pervasive irony and satire. Fortunato, the doomed connoisseur is dressed in "motley," the clothes of a court jester or "fool," with bells on his hat that clearly make him look ridiculous. The name "Fortunato" sounds like the word "fortunate," meaning lucky-something—something the drunken Italian so despised by the French aristocrat Montresor certainly is not. Montresor, fitting his plot, is dressed in a black mask and cloak, which suggests the grim reaper or other deathly specter.

Fortunato and Montresor's journey through the palace's catacombs is filled with symbols of death that accentuate the eerie mood and suspenseful tone, that also continue to poke fun at the haughty ways of the European upper classes. For example, bones are stacked everywhere below ground, which the many bottles of fine wine seem to be mixed in with. The deeper the two characters go into the bowels of the palace, the more Fortunato's drunkenness increases, the torchlight fading away to darkness. Poe openly critiques the secret society of Freemasons through Fortunato's character, suggesting its pretentiousness and corruption justifies its interment with the rest of Old Europe's bones. These stylistic and contextual elements, along with the Old World setting, combine into the fictional genre known as gothic, which Poe helped popularize in American fiction.

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What are examples of mood and tone in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Author Edgar Allan Poe mixes several moods in his short story "The Cask of Amontillado." Outside of Montresor's home there exists the "supreme madness of the carnival season," where Montresor's servants have headed for a night of celebration. It is from this madness that Fortunato comes, hoping to further his drunken state with a taste of the rare Amontillado. But within Montressor's palazzo their exists a state of deadly seriousness. He has planned Fortunato's death carefully, luring the victim deep into the gruesome depths of the catacombs, where centuries of bones are strewn about the bottles of wine that also are stored there. Fortunato does not foresee the danger that awaits him, nor does he recognize the irony of some of Montresor's comments, such as the double meaning of the trowel and Montresor's agreement that Fortunato will not die of a cough. Poe maintains an ominous mood as well: We know that Montresor plans to kill Fortunato, but we don't know how until the end.

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What are examples of mood and tone in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The mood is psychologically disturbing as is made clear by Montresor's choice to sit "down upon the bones" and listen to the lament of Fortunato's "low moaning cry" and the "furious vibrations of the chain":

I laid the second tier, and the third, and the fourth; and then I heard the furious vibrations of the chain. The noise lasted for several minutes, during which, that I might hearken to it with the more satisfaction, I ceased my labours and sat down upon the bones. When at last the clanking subsided, I resumed the trowel,...

The narrator is obviously disturbed, bitter and hateful: "A thousand injuries I had suffered" he exclaims in the opening sentences. Then Montesor gives a psychotic justification for his actions against wrongs that must be redressed and avenged.

With his obsessive hatred he always explains to the reader how well he has prepared his plan. Then, when Fortunato makes the sign of a Mason, Montesor returns with a bizarre movement and laughs, enjoying his sick pun on stone mason. Later, as he gently lures his unsuspecting victim into a dark, narrow recess in the granite catacomb wall, Montesor fetters his victim to the granite rock wall with the steel of chain and padlock.

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What are examples of mood and tone in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

"The Cask of Amontillado" has a dark, ominous mood, established fairly quickly by the narrator, Montresor.  He speaks so formally that he immediately impresses the reader as being very smart and somewhat cold.  His first line -- "The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could; but when he ventured upon insult, I vowed revenge" -- relies on hyperbole (also called overstatement) in order to impress his audience with just how incredibly injured Montresor felt.  Then, his declaration that "I must not only punish, but punish with impunity" lets us know that he is both intelligent and calculating; it isn't enough for him to simply exact revenge, but he must do so without any chance of being punished in return.  This means that he will have to employ a great deal of deception in order to achieve his brutal goal because no one can know that he is guilty of it.  Further, he seems intelligent and calculating enough to achieve such a goal.

Montresor also says, in the second paragraph,

It must be understood, that neither by word or 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.

These lines also help to show how cunning and successful Montresor is at hiding his real intentions from his victim.  The fact that Montresor's goal is Fortunato's "immolation" -- a word that typically means complete destruction by fire -- indicates both the severity of his anger and the violence of which he is capable.  Words like "insult" and "impunity" and "immolation" help to darken the mood of the story, rendering it ominous and suspenseful, and to foreshadow Fortunato's horrific ending.

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What are examples of mood and tone in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The narrative of "The Cask of Amontillado" by Poe generates a mood of dreadful suspense that leads to horror.

In this disturbing story of deranged revenge and terror, the reader is in suspense from the beginning because of the ambiguities of the offense that Fortunato has purportedly committed against Montresor, and of the "redress" that Montresor has outlined. These ambiguities are created by the circuitous plan of Montresor that prolongs any definitive action as he seduces his victim with psychological tricks and provokes him with perverse puns. 

The inebriated Fortunato is certainly no match for the devious Montresor. For, this man who prides himself as a connoisseur of wine is led deeper and deeper into the catacombs as he is deceived by Montresor who feigns concern that the niter is bad for Fortunato's cough. As they turn and twist through these chambers of the catacombs, the reader fears what will be the result of this subterranean venture. Furthermore, these winding movements of the men are often halted by Montresor's sinister puns such as the double meaning connected to the trowel and a mason as well as Montresor's agreeing with Fortunato that he will not die of a cough.

The dark and horrifying mood of Poe's psychologically disturbing story continues to the very end as Fortunato is walled in without the reader's ever having been informed of Fortunato's actual offense. Added to this, Fortunato foolishly laughs and incongruously urges Montresor, "Let us be gone," suggesting that Lady Fortunato and others are waiting for him. But, of course, Montresor has no intention of disassembling all the tiers of bricks that he has so carefully laid in what one critic calls "a profane rite." Perhaps, then, the real horror lies in what men themselves are capable of doing to others.

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What are examples of mood and tone in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Edgar Allan Poe’s short story “The Cask of Amontillado” is a work of various moods, although most of them are dark and sardonic. Some of the moods presented in the work (which are inevitably also the moods of Montresor, the first-person narrator) are the following:

  • Vengeful, as in the story’s opening sentence.
  • Self-admiring and arrogant, as in the next two sentences:

You, who so well know the nature of my soul, will not suppose, however, that I gave utterance to a threat. At length I would be avenged; this was a point definitively settled -- but the very definitiveness with which it was resolved precluded the idea of risk. I must not only punish, but punish with impunity.

  • Hypocritical, as in the story’s second paragraph.
  • Judgmental, as in the story’s third paragraph.
  • Conspiratorial and self-satisfied, as when Montresor explains how he manipulated his own servants: “I had told them that I should not return until the morning.”
  • Comical and condescending, as when Montresor describes the drunkenness of Fortunato: “The gait of my friend was unsteady, and the bells upon his cap jingled as he strode.”
  • Ironic, as when Montresor says, to the man he intends to kill, “your health is precious.”
  • Gothic, as when one part of the dark, gloomy setting is described as follows: “At the most remote end of the crypt there appeared another less spacious.”
  • Gruesome and horrific, as when the Montresor hears Fortunato awakening before Montresor has completed his scheme to seal Fortunato behind a wall of bricks:

The earliest indication I had of this was a low moaning cry from the depth of the recess. It was not the cry of a drunken man.

  • Terrifying, as when Montresor admits that even he is afraid when he hears Fortunato laughing from behind the bricks: “But now there came from out the niche a low laugh that erected the hairs upon my head.”
  • Somewhat blasphemous and irreligious, as when, hearing Fortunato beg that he be released “[f]or the love of God,” Montresor replies: “Yes," I said, "for the love of God!"
  • Smug, as in the story’s next-to-last sentence.
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What are examples of mood and tone in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Mood refers to the emotional atmosphere of the text, or the feeling the text attempts to inspire within the reader. The mood of this particular story is rather dark and tense as a result of the dramatic irony. We know that Montresor is plotting Fortunato's "immolation," but Fortunato does not, and this knowledge makes the story feel very tense for readers. We are always waiting for what seems to be inevitable: Fortunato's horrible death.

Tone refers to the author's attitude about the text's subject. This story's tone could be described as ironic. One of Montresor's requirements for revenge is that "[he] must not only punish, but punish with impunity." It is imperative to him that he never experience any negative consequences of this murder. However, in the final paragraph he tells us that when Fortunato is finally locked away within the wall of his family vault Fortunato stops responding to Montresor, and Montresor's "heart grew sick . . . [and he] hastened to make an end of [his] labor." He attributes this feeling of sickness to the dampness underground, but that hasn't bothered him until now. One might interpret this feeling of sickness to be the effect of guilt. Further, the fact that he is confessing to this murder some "half of a century" after he commits it also makes it seem as though he feels guilty. Poe seems to realize this, though Montresor does not.

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What are examples of mood and tone in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Here is an answer to your question.

http://www.enotes.com/cask-amontillado/q-and-a/need-help-with-write-definition-mood-then-identify-171721

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What are examples of mood and tone in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Your question was somewhat confused, so I have edited it to focus on the mood in general in this excellent short story. The mood in this story is one that is sinister, threatening and disturbing as we move ever further down into the catacombs of Montresor's family home and we move ever closer to the grim revenge that he has planned against Fortunato. It is important to focus on how the description of the setting is used to create and sustain this mood. Consider the following quote:

We continued our route in search of the amontillado. We passed through a range of low arches, descended, passed on, and, descending again, arrived at a deep crypt in which the foulness of the air causes our flambeaux rather to glow than flame.

Note the repetition of the word "descended" - we are walking ever further deeper into the dark catacombs, so much so that we are disorientated and we have no idea of where we are. What is clear is that we have arrived at a crypt, where dead people are buried, and that the air is so foul that even the torches are subdued. Clearly Poe is trying to set the scene for the shocking events that are about to unfold.

I think another key passage that helps create the mood of horror is when Montresor finally shackles Fortunato into the alcove from which he will never leave:

In an instant he had reached the extremity of the niche, and finding his progress arrested by the rock, stood stupidly bewildered. A moment more and I had fettered him to the granite. In its surface were two iron staples, distant from each other about two feet horizontally. From one of these depended a short chain, from the other a padlock. Throwing the links about his waist, it was but the work of a few seconds to secure it. He was too much astounded to resist.

What strikes me about this passage is the way that Montresor is able to describe the chains and their location with cool, calm, precision, even while he is planning a most heinous crime and a terrible death. The tone he takes adds to the mood of horror that dominates this excellent but terrifying work of short fiction which lingers in the readers' minds long after it has been finished.

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What is the significance of mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

In The Cask of Amontillado, the mood and the atmosphere contributes significantly to the nature of the protagonist and the horror ending. The story starts in a carnival where many gathered in the spirit of festivity. The fact that Fortunado has been drinking plays an important role that lead to his death. The mood changes when Montresor takes Fortunado into the family catacomb; the atmosphere is drastically contrasted by the mysterious and eerie setting of the catacomb. Since Fortunado is not fully conscious due to the influence of alcohol, he is not completely aware of his surroundings and the readers can only see in his narrow and limited vision and perspective. The dramatic contrast between the moods emphasizes the fate of Fortunado that changed from wealthy and merry to miserably tortured in a catacomb. 

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The mood of "The Cask of Amontillado" can be described as eerie, foreboding, suspenseful, and ominous. In order to create this unsettling atmosphere, Poe utilizes several literary techniques, which include setting, dramatic irony, foreshadowing, and imagery. At the beginning of the story, Poe introduces the reader to the vengeful narrator, Montresor, who elaborates on his desire to get revenge on Fortunato for causing him a "thousand injuries."

As Montresor's plot unfolds and he interacts with the unsuspecting Fortunato, dramatic irony creates an agitated, foreboding mood. The reader knows that Montresor is manipulating his enemy but is unsure how he plans on getting revenge. The more Fortunato trusts Montresor and follows his lead into the catacombs, the more anxiety and suspense the reader experiences. By purposefully leaving the details out of Montresor's revenge plot, Poe creates an uneasy, disturbing mood.

Poe also uses setting to create various moods. The carnival setting produces a hectic, chaotic atmosphere, which reflects Fortunato's intoxicated state. The irony of Fortunato's jester costume also contributes to the unsetting mood and foreshadows his demise. The reader is aware that Fortunato is literally playing the fool and will end up suffering in some terrible, unknown way.

Once the main characters enter Montresor's underground vaults, the dark crypt creates a threatening, terrifying mood. The visual imagery of decaying skeletons, scattered bones, hanging nitre, and broken bottles is unnerving and ominous. The damp, cold atmosphere inside the vaults also creates a chilling mood, and the desolate catacombs foreshadow Fortunato's ultimate fate. The reader recognizes that Fortunato will never return, and the horrific nature of his death is severely disturbing.

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Poe uses foreshadowing, which is hinting at what is to come later in the story to create a mood of foreboding and unease in this tale. It opens with Montresor ruminating on the many injuries he has suffered at the hands of Fortunato. In this beginning, Montresor also outlines his theories about revenge. This, from the start, raises in the reader's mind the idea that something terrible will happen.

A chief way any writer creates mood is through imagery, description that uses the five senses of sight, sound, taste, touch, and smell. Poe was a master of using imagery--often quite imaginatively--to raise a sense of horror. In this story, he uses sight, sound, and touch to create an increasingly terrifying mood.

Memorable visual images include the dark catacombs lit only by the flame of Montresor's torch, the black silk mask Montresor covers his face with, and the piles of human bones the two men pass. Memorable sound images include the tinkle of Fortunato's jester cap bells as he is led unwittingly to his doom and the echo of Fortunato's and then Montresor's responding screams as Fortunato is being walled up:

I replied to the yells of him who clamored. I re-echoed—I aided—I surpassed them in volume and in strength. I did this, and the clamorer grew still.

Touch imagery includes the damp and cold feeling in the catacombs.

All of this builds a sense of growing horror and foreboding that culminates in the way Fortunato is murdered.

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

One of the primary ways in which Edgar Allen Poe creates a dark and foreboding mood in his story "The Cask of Amontillado" is through the use of setting. It is in the pitch of night that Montresor happens upon Fortunato and invites him back to his abandoned estate. From there Fortunato and Montresor wander deep into the estates' underground vaults filled with decaying bones, narrow passages, and dark damp air. This setting creates a strong sense of foreboding and foreshadows Fortunato's unfortunate end. From the darkness of night, Montresor and Fortunato descend into the deeper blackness of the vault surrounded by death and decay. Poe conjures an end to meet this ominous setting as Montresor chains Fortunato to a wall at the back of a cave and buries him alive. Ultimately, Fortunato is swallowed up by the darkness before he even dies as his voice trails off and he stops responding to Montresor leaving the reader to wonder if he has met a more sinister fate than even Montresor imagined.

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The dark and terrifying mood of "The Cask of Amontillado" is created largely through imagery. Poe uses powerful descriptions to show the dark underground catacomb:

...a deep crypt, in which the foulness of the air caused our flambeaux (torch) rather to glow than flame.

At the most remote end of the crypt there appeared another less spacious. Its walls had been lined with human remains...
(Poe, "The Cask of Amontillado," eNotes eText)

This is no ordinary wine-cellar, but a crypt serving both functions. Instead of spacious rows of barrels and bottles, there are tight corridors and slimy walls, with musty air that threatens to extinguish the torch. Walking through the catacomb causes Fortunato to cough violently, and the space is so dark that even the torches themselves are insufficient to light the way. The environment couples with Montresor's constant litany of "revenge" to create a claustrophobic, sinister mood.

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The opening sentence establishes a revenge plot, and the narrator asserts that he must "punish with impunity" for the unnamed wrong done to him. The tone is thus established from the first paragraph as dark and vindictive, leading to initial feelings of suspense.

Poe also crafts an unreliable narrator to further the suspense. What exactly has Fortunato done to Montresor? What are these "injuries" the narrator has "borne" and which are so severe that Fortunato deserves to die for them? We never know, but we do know that the narrator is so deceitful that he is confident "that neither by word nor deed [has he] given Fortunato cause to doubt [his] good will." This narrator with an unnamed grudge, who is able to lie so effectively that his victim never suspects him, certainly furthers the story's suspense.

The murder plot begins in a suspenseful and ominous setting:

It was about dusk, one evening during the supreme madness of the carnival season, that I encountered my friend.

Night is falling. There is "madness" all around the men, and Fortunato himself is dressed in costume. His deceptive appearance thus matches Fortunato's deceptive inner soul, and it is at this point that Montresor begins to play upon Fortunato's various weaknesses. The narrator's ability to navigate the conversation in ways that foreshadow events to come furthers the suspense. As they pause for a moment, Montresor tells Fortunato,

You are rich, respected, admired, beloved; you are happy, as once I was. You are a man to be missed.

The narrator hinges his plot on the man's pride, and it works. He uses verbal irony in telling him that he will be "missed." Fortunato, of course, believes that Montresor only means missed in that moment, yet the reader is increasingly aware that the real meaning is "missed for all time."

Setting, foreshadowing, characterization, verbal irony, and tone all work together to create a suspenseful story that ends with the death of Fortunato—and no feelings of regret for Montresor.

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Poe begins "The Cask of Amontillado" with Montresor, the narrator, speaking of his wish to avenge "the thousand injuries" he has suffered at the hands of Fortunato. From the start, we know that the narrator will try to achieve this revenge. However, we do not know how, which is how Poe first creates suspense in the story. Montresor also speaks of being avenged "with impunity"; the narrator does not intend to face any consequences, so we can guess that he will try to get rid of any evidence of his crime, maybe even any evidence of Fortunato himself, in order to escape retribution and punishment. Though the first paragraph is rather vague in describing Montresor's plot, Poe creates an interest in the reader's mind: we want to know what his plan is and whether he will be successful.

Once Montresor meets Fortunato at the carnival, Poe uses details and imagery that continue to amplify the suspense created by the story's opening. The narrator begins to hint at Fortunato's weakness: his (somewhat pretentious) love of wine. This is a clue as to how the narrator will exact his revenge. The two meet at the carnival and discuss a rare amontillado that Montresor wants his "friend" to taste. Thus, Montresor is able to lure Fortunato into his trap. The first bit of foreshadowing we get is that Fortunato has a bad cough, though he insists that it is nothing. Montresor tells him that the vaults where they will find the amontillado are damp and dangerous for someone with a bad cold. Fortunato, though, is so desperate to try the wine that he repeats that his cough is nothing. 

The other major example of imagery that creates suspense is the setting that the two characters enter on their way to the prized amontillado. They go down to the Montresors' vaults, and there are numerous descriptions of tombs and skeletons, hinting at Fortunato's imminent death. While discussing how vast and full this family vault is, Montresor quotes the family motto, "Nemo me impune lacessit," which translates to "No one provokes me with impunity." This is particularly ominous as we know that Montresor is leading Fortunato to his death. Their walk through the vaults is suspenseful because of the setting and because of the building tension as they approach the scene of Fortunato's demise: Montresor eventually walls him up in the vaults to die. 

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Edgar Allan Poe creates suspense in "The Cask of Amontillado" through the physical journey taken by the central characters, his eerie symbolism, and his references to sickness. These elements work together to let the reader know that Fortunato will die before the story is over.

First, the journey that Fortunato and Montresor take is from the light and joy of a carnival through an underground tunnel that becomes darker, colder and more poisonous as they continue walking. Poe describes their descent into a "deep crypt, in which the foulness of the air caused our flambeaux rather to glow than flame," and talks about the nitre in the air around them as they go deeper underground and Fortunato comes closer to death. This slow, dangerous descent helps build suspense as the reader becomes increasingly aware of Fortunato's murderous plan.

Similarly, Poe includes many symbols of death that become increasingly more macabre as the story continues. At the beginning of their journey together, Montresor draws a "mask of black silk" around him, as if he were on his way to a funeral. Next, Poe mentions the "damp ground of the catacombs," which are a more obvious symbol of death. Eventually, Poe launches into a vivid description of the piles of human remains which line the walls of the crypt into which they enter. At this point, the morbidity of the symbolism is clear, and this symbolism has helped to create suspense.

Finally, Poe also builds suspense through Montresor's constant references to Fortunato's sickness and impending death. At first, Montresor pretends to be concerned about Fortunato's cold and cough. Fortunato's response is that he "shall not die of a cough," an answer that seems trite but foreshadows a grim end. Finally, as the nitre begins to have a serious effect on Fortunato, Montresor talks freely about the way the "drops of moisture trickle among the bones." This disgusting response reminds us that they are entering a crypt whose air contains a dangerous chemical on their way to Fortunato's murder.

Because of Poe's skill with words, he was able to create suspense through the construction of a physical journey, the use of macabre symbolism and several references to sickness and death. These elements help keep the reader frightened, intrigued and engaged as the story moves toward its horrible end.

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Poe creates a sense of fear in "The Cask of Amontillado" through the use of dramatic irony and imagery. These literary devices build foreboding and a gradually rising horror in his readers.

Montresor opens the story with comments about the perfect revenge and makes it clear he has planned revenge against the unsuspecting Fortunato. This is an example of dramatic irony, which is when the audience knows what the characters in a work of literature don't. The reader therefore experiences dread and fear as Fortunato, not for a moment thinking Montresor harbors malice toward him, follows him drunkenly into a dark, isolated catacomb.

At this point, imagery builds our fear. Imagery is description using the five senses of sight, hearing, touch, taste, and smell. Poe provides vivid sensory description of the creepy, isolated, narrow catacombs with damp nitre on the walls. It is utterly dark except for the torch Montresor holds, and the twosome passes piles of bones. Images of darkness, death, and imprisonment touch on primal, atavistic fears in human beings and build to a crescendo in the final walling up of Fortunato.

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Poe's own fear of being buried alive is one of the most important themes in "The Cask of Amontillado." To project this fear on others, he stresses the dark and hostile environment of the catacomb, making what should be a simple, nonthreatening wine-cellar into a frightening tomb:

We had passed through long walls of piled skeletons, with casks and puncheons intermingling, into the inmost recesses of the catacombs.
[...]
We passed through a range of low arches, descended, passed on, and descending again, arrived at a deep crypt, in which the foulness of the air caused our flambeaux (torch) rather to glow than flame.
(Poe, "The Cask of Amontillado," eNotes eText)

The fear of being confined is called claustrophobia, and is a common fear. The damp walls, with their piled skeletons and sheen of nitre, are meant for confining the dead, not housing the living. The air itself is so thick with humidity and dust that it almost puts the torch out. As the air weighs heavy on their lungs, and the walls seem to press in, Montresor's plan becomes evident, and Poe uses Fortunato's mental deterioration to show his terrible fear, first screaming, and then laughing madly in disbelief.

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How does Poe create atmosphere and tension in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The setting of the gloomy catacombs works effectively to create atmosphere in "The Cask of Amontillado," especially in contrast to the high spirits of carnival time. Poe develops tension in many ways as the narrator Montresor draws Fortunato closer and closer to his inevitable doom. We know that Montresor is up to no good--that he is avenging a wrongdoing by luring Fortunato down to the catacombs: "THE thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge." Fortunato doesn't know he is walking into a trap. His arrogance makes him continue further on despite the warnings Montresor knowshe will ignore: warnings about the cold and damp. When Fortunato says that a cold won't kill him, we pick up the increasing tension and the double meaning (that is--a cold won't kill him but something else WILL) when Montresor says "True." The tension escalates as Montresor gets Fortunato drunk and begins walling him in. As the e-notes guide to "A Cask of Amontillado" states, Montresor’s calm voice in the face of his evil intention also contributes to the tension and horror: "Even at the most terrifying moment in the story, when Fortunato realizes that Montresor intends to seal him up behind a wall, the narrator is calm and detached." It is the abnormal psychology of the psychopathic, vengeful Montresor that grabs us in this masterful story.

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How does the setting in "The Cask of Amontillado" build suspense?

The setting of ‘‘The Cask of Amontillado’’ builds suspense in many ways. One is that both the location and the time of the story are only hinted at. It seems to take place in Venice during Carnival, yet the year is unclear, as is the nationality of everyone. To bring touches of the exotic to his murky atmosphere, Poe freely combines elements of different nations and cultures. Fortunato and Luchesi are Italians, knowledgeable about Italian wines. Montresor may be a Frenchman. Amontillado is a Spanish wine. Montresor's family motto is in Latin, Nemo me impune lacessit, and is the motto of the royal arms of Scotland. There are also references to Montresor's palazzo, his roquelaire, his rapier, and his flambeaux. This mix of images and phrases suggests a "placelessness" to the story.

The specific location of the catacombs truly adds suspense in the story. The niter growing upon the walls, the water dripping, the stacks of human bones...all this contributes to a mood of eeriness and builds the tension to the point of breaking. When the climax actually comes, one can almost feel the chains around their wrists, hear the clinking and the slap of the mortar, & see the flicker of the candle on the walls. Overall, the intense imagery of the surroundings adds to the suspense of the story.

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How does the setting in "The Cask of Amontillado" build suspense?

The setting in "A Cask of Amontillado" is very appropriate to the story.  Montresor is getting revenge on Fortunato for an unknown reason by taking Fortunato into the catacombs and burying him alive.  The catacombs would be the maze or the hallways or the corridors that were built underneath the houses or the city.  It was where wine was stored (which was the bait Montresor used to get Fortunato to follow him).  They are approrpriate because they are dark, isolated, and to be blunt, scary.  The story talks about how as they are walking through the corridors they see skeletal remains and the entire area is essentially a maze -- where anyone could get lost.  The setting is also ironic because a party is happening above all of this treachery.  While everyone is enjoying themselves, they are completely unaware that a murderous act is occurring beneath them.

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The Cask of Amontillado was first published in 1846. It is the story of a murder, told by the murderer. Montresor kills his "friend", Fortunato. The story starts out with a foreshadowing of what is to come, with Montresor, confessing his crime to an unknown person. Obviously this person knows him well.

The first sight of irony in the story is that Montresor waits for Fortunato at Carnival. Carnival is celebrated right before Lent starts. This is ironic, because the last day of Carnival is usually described as the last day of sin before Lent begins. Fortunato is already drunk from the party and Montresor lures him away with the promise of tasting a very expensive amontillado. As they are walking down the catacombs, Montresor pretends to act like he cares about Fortunato's ill health. This is ironic in the fact that he is going to kill Fortunato. It is also ironic that they are going down into the catacombs, which are filled with bones hanging from chains, foreshadowing the death that awaits Fortunato. The trowel that Montresor carries and explains away that he has it because he is a Freemason is also ironic, that tool will lead to the murder. The toast that Fortunato makes is also ironic. He toasts "I drink to the buried that repose around us", having no idea that he is soon to be buried there. The beginning of the story is foreshadowing what has already taken place.

One of the best uses of irony is when Montresor confesses to this person. 

               "It must be understood that neither by word or deed had I given                       Fortunato cause to doubt my goodwill. 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."

This story makes you, the reader, use your imagination on how this will end. There is no detective investigating the crime. No one knows about it. Montresor even states that for 50 years, no one has disovered what he has been doing. Leading us to believe that he has done this many times before. He never gives a clear motive for killing Fortunato, only to say he had suffered a thousand injuries by him. Just the Fortunato is ironic. Edgar Allan Poe sneaks in clever ironies all through the story. He leaves us wondering who is Montresor confessing to? How long has he been killing? Will he ever be caught? 

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How does Poe develop a sense of suspense in “The Cask of Amontillado”?

Poe creates suspense through the use of word choice, apt phrasing, verbal irony, and even setting. For example, the title of the story contains the word "Cask," which sounds a lot like the word casket, another word for a coffin. When Montresor and Fortunato discuss the amontillado Montresor claims to have purchased, they never call it a cask; rather, they refer to the quantity as a pipe of amontillado. This might compel us to wonder why the word cask is used in the title, a clue to Fortunato's deadly fate. One example of apt phrasing is Montresor's description of the nitre that encrusts the walls of the catacombs. He calls it "white web-work," comparing it, via metaphor, to a spider's web. Montresor is literally luring his enemy, Fortunato, into something that resembles a spider's web, making Montresor the deadly spider. This metaphor emphasizes his evil intentions and creates suspense about what horrors are to come.

Another metaphor that helps to create suspense is when Montresor describes Fortunato's eyes as "two filmy orbs that distilled the rheum of intoxication." While Montresor is keen and deadly, Fortunato is relatively helpless and ignorant. He has no idea what he is in for, adding to the suspense the reader feels. Fortunato begins to cough so hard that Montresor says that his "poor friend" couldn't reply to him for many minutes. This use of verbal irony—saying the opposite of what he means as he does not consider Fortunato his friend, and he certainly doesn't feel sorry for Fortunato—makes it even clearer how remorselessly he carries out his crime. Finally, the setting also adds to the suspense because they are literally in a crypt, surrounded by dead bodies! These are places living people do not usually like to go, and this setting hints at Fortunato's fate as well.

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How does Poe develop a sense of suspense in “The Cask of Amontillado”?

"The Cask of Amontillado" opens with the words:

The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge.

Poe makes the fullest possible use of the unreliable narrator here. The reader immediately wonders whether Montresor really imagines he has been injured a thousand times, or if this is hyperbole. Even if it is hyperbole, when we encounter Fortunato, he does not seem to think that he has injured or insulted Montresor at all. We do not know the nature of the injuries or the insult. All this makes Montresor seem mysterious, unreliable and unpredictable. We have the sense that he might do anything and go on to justify it with brilliant sophistry. A few sentences further on, he says:

A wrong is unredressed when retribution overtakes its redresser. It is equally unredressed when the avenger fails to make himself felt as such to him who has done the wrong.

The elegant prose style smooths over the sinister point that this is a man who has thought long and hard about the nature of revenge. This focus and attention to detail are evident throughout Montresor's narrative. He does not, like the narrator of "The Tell-Tale Heart", continually accuse us of thinking him mad. Instead, he quietly reveals his utter lack of proportion and sanity, at the same time as his intelligence and single-mindedness, finishing the story on a triumphant note, by remarking upon how successfully he has managed to punish with impunity. It is through Poe's acute depiction of the psychology of Montresor's brilliant but wildly unpredictable and amoral mind that suspense is achieved and maintained in "The Cask of Amontillado."

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How does Poe develop a sense of suspense in “The Cask of Amontillado”?

I would say that Edgar Allan Poe, in "The Cask of Amontillado", relies heavily on his use of first-person narration, as well as his use of dramatic irony, in order to create much of the story's suspense.

The great strength of first person narration lies in how it transports readers directly into the mindset of a character within this story, an element that Poe uses to powerful effect. It should also be noted that first-person narration also lends itself well to unreliable narrators, and this is certainly the case with Montresor himself. For one thing, note that Montresor never details what Fortunato's various slights entailed, or why he has such hatred against his friend. These elements create a deeply disconcerting effect, as we watch the murderer draw his victim deeper into his web, through the perspective of the murderer himself.

At the same time, Poe's suspense relies on his use of dramatic irony. Dramatic irony refers to a form of irony created by making readers aware of details which characters within the story are ignorant of. This is found from the story's very beginning, when Montresor makes clear his hatred of Fortunato and his desire for revenge. However, Fortunato himself is entirely unaware of Montresor's ill intention, while Montresor essentially is feigning friendship to lure him into a trap. As they proceed further into the catacombs, with Montresor getting Fortunato increasingly inebriated on wine, that sense of suspense continues to build. Readers are well aware that an unpleasant fate awaits Fortunato, even if they do not know what that fate entails.

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How does Poe develop a sense of suspense in “The Cask of Amontillado”?

Poe is the master of suspenseful writing and unique plot twists. He develops suspense through the use of setting and the characters. When Montresor begins the story immediately we know we are dealing with a volatile loose cannon. Poe uses Montresor, the unreliable narrator, to tell this gruesome tale. We know right away that Montresor plans to exact revenge for the "thousand injuries"Fortunato has inflicted upon him. The story unfolds during the carnival season and Montresor happened to come dressed as the Grim Reaper while Fortunato, in stark contrast, comes dressed as a jester. The two meet at night and Montresor speaks to his "friend" very darkly, although Fortunato is too drunk to realize. Montresor lead Fortunato to his empty estate under the auspices of tasting a fine wine. Once there he leads him into the catacombs, which also served as the burial tombs for the family's generations passed. The suspense grows and reaches its climax when we realize along with Fortunato that Montresor plans to bury him alive in the tombs behind a newly built brick wall.

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Edgar Allan Poe is the classic American master of suspense and horror. The story to which you are referring, “The Cask of Amontillado,” is frequently read and taught in American high schools. In your question you asked for evidence from page 4. Unfortunately, it is impossible to compare page numbers across different editions of the story, so I’ll give you several examples of how Poe builds suspense from different parts of the story.

Early in the story, Poe prepares the reader with the very first line, in the words of the narrator Montresor:

The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as best I could; but when he ventured upon insult, I vowed revenge.

The reader knows immediately that Montresor is planning to do something harmful to the character of Fortunato.

Then he gives the reader a hint of how he will take his revenge by pointing out a character trait of Fortunato’s that he can exploit: “He prided himself on his connoisseurship in wine.” Although this doesn’t sound like much, pride can often be manipulated. This is Montresor’s plan.

A little later, the Montresor and Fortunato converse, and the Montresor sets up Fortunato. He tells him that he has a “pipe of what passes for Amontillado.” This means he has a cask of a desirable wine called Amontillado. This is something that he knows will greatly interest Fortunato. Then he hooks him with the following line:

 As you are engaged, I am on my way to Luchesi. If anyone has a critical turn, it is he. He will tell me –

which is shortly followed by:

And yet some fools will have it that his taste is a match for your own.

So now the Montresor has enticed Fortunato with the promise of good wine and appealed to his pride by suggesting someone else can test the wine and determine its authenticity. He knows Fortunato will take the bait.

The conversation now takes on an ironic twist as Montresor pretends to try to convince Fortunato not to come to his vaults to taste the Amontillado. Fortunato, however, is too interested and insists on coming. The reader’s sense of suspense is heightened by this unexpected development, as Fortunato runs right into the Montresor’s trap.

Once they reach Montresor’s home and descend into the vaults, Fortunato begins to cough. Montresor suggests that they leave the vault (although he doesn’t really want to), but again Fortunato leads himself to his own destruction with the ironic statement,

I shall not die of a cough.

The reader and Montresor know that this is, in fact, true, because Montresor has something else in mind.

A little further on, Montresor again hints at Fortunato’s fate when he tells him his family motto in Latin:

Nemo me impune lacessit.

which means “nobody attacks me without punishment.” The irony here is that this is exactly the Montresor’s plan for Fortunato.

From here, the Montresor, leads him to the end of the vault, where he chains him to the wall and then bricks him in, covering him with a new wall. Fortunato only realizes what is happening when it is too late to do anything about it.

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How does Poe create mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

In most stories the protagonist has a motivation to achieve something, and the reader wants to see if he will succeed or fail in achieving it. This usually involves keeping the reader in the protagonist's point of view from beginning to end. A good example would be Jack London's "To Build a Fire." The protagonist wants to get to a camp where he will be safe and warm. He keeps running into problems and in his case fails to achieve his objective; but we remain interested to the end because we want to find out what happens. In most stories the reader is kept interested because he wants to find out what happens.

In "The Cask of Amontillado" we know that Montresor wants to murder Fortunato. We don't know whether he will be successful or exactly how he intends to murder his enemy. We want to find out what happens. Montresor has numerous problems to cope with even before he gets Fortunato underground. He has to lure Fortunato off the crowded street without being recognized himself. Fortunato is wearing a gaudy costume and even a cap with ringing bells. This turns out to be an advantage because Fortunato attracts all the attention and Montresor, in a black cloak and black mask, is not noticed. He is like a shadow. Then when Montresor gets Fortunato down into his wine vaults and the catacombs he has to keep his victim drunk, and in at least one instance he has to distract him from asking questions about the Amontillado--questions such as, "Where are we going?" "Why is it so far from the bottom of the steps?" "Why are we taking so long?" 

“The pipe,” he said.

“It is farther on,” said I; “but observe the white web-work which gleams from these cavern walls.”

Montresor gets Fortunato interested in the nitre gleaming all around him. He talks about other things as well, all intended to keep Fortunato distracted during their long journey to the place of execution, where Fortunato expects to find a huge pipe of gourmet Amontillado sherry. Another way in which Montresor keeps Fortunato distracted and confused is by urging him to go back.

“Come,” I said, with decision, “we will go back; your health is precious. You are rich, respected, admired, beloved; you are happy, as once I was. You are a man to be missed. For me it is no matter. We will go back; you will be ill, and I cannot be responsible. Besides, there is Luchesi—”

Montresor has many problems to cope with, but finally we see how he has accomplished his purpose, which was to commit a perfect crime without any risk of being suspected as the perpetrator. He has Fortunato chained inside the narrow niche and is building a wall to hide him forever. The story quickly ends because the protagonist has achieved his goal and the reader's curiosity is satisfied.

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What is the mood of the carnival in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Montresor, the first-person narrator of Poe's "The Cask of Amontillado," describes the carnival as "supreme madness." By this, he is referring to the raucous drinking and celebration which occurs during the days before Lent. Lent is a Catholic religious observance leading up to Easter Sunday. During Lent, people often abstain from drinking alcohol and eating meat. Therefore, they view the carnival as a time to drink and eat before a period of abstinence. The term "carnival" literally means a farewell to meat, and the celebration involves a great indulgence in both drinking and eating. People also often dress in bright-colored and absurd clothing.

Montresor says Fortunato "wore motley," including a "tight fitting parti-striped dress" and a "conical cap and bells." Montresor also notes that his servants have all left his estate "to make merry in honor of the time." Thus, the mood of carnival is happy and festive with people enjoying themselves and many becoming quite drunk. In fact, Montresor describes Fortunato as being partially inebriated when they meet. For Montresor, the holiday atmosphere is perfect for his plot. No one is paying attention to what he is doing as he lures Fortunato into the catacombs below his estate with the pretext of getting Fortunato's opinion on a bottle of wine.   

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Which word best describes the mood of the carnival at the beginning of "The Cask of Amontillado"?

When the narrator says that he encountered Fortunato during the "supreme madness" of the carnival, he is conveying important bits of information. One is that Fortunato is drunk. Poe writes: "He accosted me with excessive warmth, for he had been drinking much." Everybody is drunk during the supreme madness of a big carnival--except for Montresor himself, who is cold sober. Another bit of information suggested by the descriptive words "supreme madness" is that Montresor is going to have an extremely difficult task of leading Fortunato away from the mob to his palazzo without being recognized. Montresor certainly doesn't want people to remember that the last person seen with Fortunato on the night he disappeared was himself. Poe provides Fortunato with the most conspicuous possible costume, a jester's motley complete with a cap with jingling bells. Fortunato is sure to attract attention, but Montresor knows this will attract attentionawayfrom himself. All anyone will remember would be that Fortunato was accompanied by a man in a black cloak wearing a black mask. He could have been anybody. Getting Fortunato down into his catacombs is Montresor's main problem, and hence it is the main conflict in the story. The drama in the story is created by the logistical problems involved in getting Fortunato into the catacombs, leading him to the niche, wrapping the short chains about him, and locking the padlock. The fact that Fortunato is drunk makes it easier and at the same time harder. It is not easy to handle a large, boisterous, drunken man, especially in the darkness, although it is fairly easy to deceive a man in such condition.

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Which word best describes the mood of the carnival at the beginning of "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The word "madness" seems to express the mood of the carnival better than any other adjective. If two words were permitted, they would be "supreme madness." Poe does not specify where this carnival is taking place, but there are many indications that it must be in Venice. For one thing, the Carnival of Venice is world-famous. It would have to be taking place in a big Italian city to justify the description of the event. Furthermore, the word "palazzo" is used several times. Venice is full of palazzi, many of them hundreds of years old, and it would have to be an important city to contain palaces. Both Montresor and Fortunato live in palazzi. The city would have to be one that does considerable importing and exporting. The cask of amontillado, if it had existed, would have had to come in by ship from Spain. Montresor states that they are under the river towards the end of their underground journey. This would have been, suggestively, the Po River which runs through the rich Po Valley and terminates near Venice.

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Which word best describes the mood of the carnival at the beginning of "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The carnival at which the narrator, Montresor, meets Fortunato is occurring "during the supreme madness of the carnival season."

The "carnival season" is the period of time preceding Lent, the Christian period of preparation for marking the death of Jesus on Good Friday. During Lent, particularly in predominantly Roman Catholic countries such as Italy (where "The Cask of Amontillado" presumably takes place), believers are expected to make sacrifices in their lives in remembrance of Jesus's sacrifice. This includes giving up meat, eggs, and other foods or beverages, and activities that appear too boisterous and celebratory during the time of preparation to mark Good Friday and Jesus's death.

Carnival season is the time prior to Lent. It is a time to celebrate and party before such activities need to cease; a time to use up the alcoholic beverages and rich foods that will be banned during Lent; a time to use costumes to hide one's identity while indulging all the fantasies that will be forbidden soon.

Many words could describe the mood of the carnival. Uninhibited, celebratory, excited, flamboyant, unrestrained - take your pick.

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Which word best describes the mood of the carnival at the beginning of "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The carnival was a time of drunkenness and masked identity. It sounded a lot like Mardi Gras to me. In the evening, costumed people took to the streets for merrymaking. There was much drinking, food, laughter, and music. It was a noisy, wild scene. If people did not show up the next day, the assumption was they were sleeping the alcohol off. People did things they wouldn't ordinarily do because their identity was masked. Since Italy was primarily a Catholic, the carnival probably took place just before Lent, a time of giving up the pleasures of life to prepare for Easter.

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What is the mood or atmosphere of "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The overall mood and atmosphere of Poe's classic short story "The Cask of Amontillado" can be described as disturbing and menacing. At the beginning of the story, the narrator explains to the reader how he got revenge on Fortunato for causing him a "thousand injuries." Montresor proceeds to outline his requirements for committing the perfect crime and elaborates on how he deceived Fortunato into following him down into his family's catacombs. By utilizing dramatic irony, Poe creates an eerie, ominous mood. The reader is aware that Montresor has an evil plan for the unsuspecting Fortunato, who is visibly intoxicated and unaware that he is being deceived by a malevolent enemy. The carnival setting also adds an element of chaos and bizarre to the story's atmosphere, which heightens the suspense and contributes to the unsettling mood. As Fortunato follows Montresor into his family's vaults, the mood becomes increasingly ominous and threatening. The dingy nature of the catacombs and the skeletons surrounding the two characters also contribute to the sinister atmosphere. Once Montresor successfully clasps Fortunato to the back wall of the vaults, Poe creates an atmosphere of danger, panic, and fear as Montresor steadily builds a wall to bury his enemy alive.

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What is the mood or atmosphere of "The Cask of Amontillado"?

The mood of this story is characterized by foreboding and danger. We know from the outset that Montresor is planning to do something terrible to Fortunato. He says, "I would be avenged" and that "I must not only punish but punish with impunity." Therefore, we know Montresor is plotting revenge for the "thousand injuries" Fortunato has done him as well as whatever "insult" Fortunato has offered him. Further, Montresor vows that he must not only exact such revenge, but he must do so without incurring personal consequence for himself. He feels both that he must go unpunished for whatever retribution he exacts as well as that he must make himself known as the author of this retribution. Several times Montresor hints about what he plans to do; the foreshadowing of his later actions lends to the foreboding atmosphere. His calculated coldness—his ability to deceive his victim up until the last moment—helps to create a mood of danger.

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Describe the mood of "The Cask of Amontillado."

The mood in this story is one that is sinister, threatening and disturbing as we move ever further down into the catacombs of Montresor's family home and we move ever closer to the grim revenge that he has planned against Fortunato. It is important to focus on how the description of the setting is used to create and sustain this mood. Consider the following quote:

We continued our route in search of the amontillado. We passed through a range of low arches, descended, passed on, and, descending again, arrived at a deep crypt in which the foulness of the air causes our flambeaux rather to glow than flame.

Note the repetition of the word "descended" - we are walking ever further deeper into the dark catacombs, so much so that we are disorientated and we have no idea of where we are. What is clear is that we have arrived at a crypt, where dead people are buried, and that the air is so foul that even the torches are subdued. Clearly Poe is trying to set the scene for the shocking events that are about to unfold.

I think another key passage that helps create the mood of horror is when Montresor finally shackles Fortunato into the alcove from which he will never leave:

In an instant he had reached the extremity of the niche, and finding his progress arrested by the rock, stood stupidly bewildered. A moment more and I had fettered him to the granite. In its surface were two iron staples, distant from each other about two feet horizontally. From one of these depended a short chain, from the other a padlock. Throwing the links about his waist, it was but the work of a few seconds to secure it. He was too much astounded to resist.

What strikes me about this passage is the way that Montresor is able to describe the chains and their location with cool, calm, precision, even while he is planning a most heinous crime and a terrible death. The tone he takes adds to the mood of horror that dominates this excellent but terrifying work of short fiction.

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How does the setting of "The Cask of Amontillado" contribute to its tone, mood, and effect?

The author specifically chose the setting of the crypt in “The Cask of Amontillado” to go with an ironic, spooky and sophisticated tone to create an ominous and disturbing mood.

Setting is the time and place of the action of the story.  The story is set in Montresor’s family crypt, where wine is stored.  Crypts have plenty of bones and are dark and ominous.  The fact that the story takes place during carnival, which is important because it leads to the irony because you don’t expect a murder during a time of merriment.

Tone is the author’s attitude toward a subject.  The tone of this story can be described as ironic, spooky and sophisticated.  Consider the author’s word choice in the first line.  You can hear the sophistication, but there is definitely a spookiness to it.

THE THOUSAND INJURIES of Fortunato I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge.

There is also a lot of irony in the tone.  The tone is ironic because the irony is clear from the word choice.  For example, Fortunado toasting the dead and Montresor resting in peace are backed up with the overall feeling from the author’s word choice that we know something that the characters don’t, and there are contradictions everywhere.

Consider also how the setting and word choice create the mood, or the reader’s feelings when reading the passage.

I passed down a long and winding staircase, requesting him to be cautious as he followed. We came at length to the foot of the descent, and stood together upon the damp ground of the catacombs of the Montresors.

The choice if words like “winding,” “cautious,” “descent,” “damp,” and “catacombs” were carefully chosen to create the ominous and disturbing mood.

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How does diction affect the mood in "The Cask of Amontillado"?

Montresor's diction is quite formal in "The Cask of Amontillado," and this conveys both his intelligence and his capacity to actually achieve the thing he sets his mind to.  We can tell by his vocabulary, and his use of words such as "impunity" and "retribution" and "immolation" that he has a highly developed intellect.  He wants to utterly destroy his nemesis, and his diction indicates that he has the smarts to do it. 

In this way, then, his diction affects the mood.  Montresor is not some bumbler who we believe to be incapable of meeting his goal of annihilating his enemy; rather, his diction conveys his intelligence and helps us to ascertain that he is absolutely capable of his enemy's destruction.  Thus, his diction darkens the mood, and renders it more ominous and suspenseful, because we are led to believe that Fortunato's destruction is imminent and inevitable based on what we know about Montresor.

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How does the setting of "The Cask of Amontillado" contribute to its overall mood?

For English-speaking readers, especially of the early nineteenth century, the setting of a story in Italy or other Mediterranean countries often conveyed a sense of mystery and deep romanticism. Poe places his tale not only in Italy, but also during Carnival time, which adds an element of wildness and abandon. The costumes of the revelers, such as Fortunato's "tight-fitting dress" with "conical cap and bells," depict something not only amusing but also grotesque, as with the characters in Poe's "The Masque of the Red Death." It's as if both the narrator and Fortunato have become slightly monstrous in their disguises.

An even more significant element of the setting may be the underground vault—the catacombs in which the bones of the dead are visible. Underground chambers are a recurring theme in Poe's works and always have the implication of horror and murder. "The Pit and the Pendulum" takes place in such a chamber during the Inquisition, and in "The Black Cat," the narrator says he is walling up his wife's body in the cellar of their home as the monks of the Middle Ages did with those of their victims.

A last detail is that Fortunato is so drunk that he at first does not seem to understand he is being entombed alive, and he asks naively if there is fun to be had back at the palazzo. Then we have the sudden shock of his crying, "For the love of God, Montresor!" One might ask if the disconnect in tone between Fortunato's statements adds to the horror or, on the contrary, defuses it in some way, making the whole tale into a mystifying and unreal dream.

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