The Cask of Amontillado
by Edgar Allan Poe
Suitability: Age 13 to adult, mother tongue or EAL.
Questions are divided into three rough categories:
1. Literal
2. Inferential
3. Evaluative
Questions marked are more advanced.

1.1 What is the meaning of the following words in the context in which they appear:
   a) Catacombs  (top page 3)
   b) Virtuoso  (middle page 1)
   c) Motley  (bottom page 1)
   d) Arms  (top page 4)
   e) Fettered  (bottom page 5)
   f) Promiscuously  (middle page 5)
   g) Impunity  (top page 1)
   h) Gait  (top page 3)
   i) Rheum  (top page 3)

1.2 What is the meaning of the phrase "A wrong is unredressed when retribution overtakes its redresser."?  (top page 1)

1.3 The answers to the following questions can be found in the text:
   a) Why did Montresor seek revenge on Fortunato?
   b) How did Montresor know that the house would be empty?
   c) Where had the stone and morter, used by Montresor to wall up the entrance to the niche, been hidden?

1.4 In your own words, describe the the catacombs that Fortunato is led through.  (page 5)

1.5 Draw a picture or diagram of of the deep crypt described on page 5. Fortunato should be shown already fettered.

2.1 Where and when is the story set? Give reasons for your answer.

2.2 Why does Montresor make sure Fortunato has drunk a lot of wine?

2.3 What is Luchresi's role in the story?

2.4 What preparations had Montressor made for his revenge?

2.5 Why does Montresor appear concerned about Fortunato's health?

2.6 Describe Fortunato's character.

2.7 Comment on the author's use of the word "mason". (bottom page 4)

3.1 Write a sequel describing the discovery of the niche.

3.2 Discuss how the Poe uses setting to enhance the atmosphere of horror in the story.

3.3 Why do you think Montresor succeeded in leading Fortunato to the niche without raising his suspicions?

3.4 Why do you think Fortunato became silent at the end? What do you think the effect was on Montresor?

3.5 Why did Montresor go to such lengths to get his revenge? After all, he could merely have run Fortunato through with his sword.

3.6 Describe the Montresor's family arms. What significance do they have in the story?

3.7 Do you think the degree of revenge described in the story is ever justified? What other actions could Montresor have taken?

3.8 Discuss whether you believe insults or bullying could cause this degree of revenge today. What, in your opinion, could be done to prevent it?

3.9 To what extent can the narrator be relied upon to give an accurate portrayal of events? How might the reader's view of his actions change if the story were written in the third person?

3.10 Discuss Poe's use of irony and black humour in the story.
 Questions by Jane Quest