Elaborate once said, “From even the greatest of horrors, irony is seldom absent. ” In fact, irony is used very often in horror stories. One story that this is particularly overt in is Edgar Allen Pope’s “The Cask of Amontillado”. In “The Cask of Amontillado”, Poe utilizes irony to create dark humor by writing Motocross’s intentions to kill Fortunate at the beginning of the story, and then making light of the whole situation. The first case of irony is that Fortunate was dressed as a fool.
This is ironic firstly cause he claims to have a penchant for wines, and also because he is being taken for a fool. It is said, “He had on a tight-fitting apart-striped dress, and his head was surmounted by the conical cap and bells” (Poe, 3-4). The bells on his hat are significant because they continue to Jingle throughout the story, providing irony and dark humor each time they are mentioned. Also, as James Coney put it, “the high spirits of the season provided an appropriately ironic background for Motocross’s lawful antics with his victim” (Some Further Ironies, 196).
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It is not Just the bells that provide irony; the mere fact that the story takes place in carnival season is twisted. The more distraught Fortunate becomes, the bells seem more twisted and dark. Another example of irony is that Mentors continuously expresses concern for Fortune’s health. Fortunate is so avid about seeing the Amontillado, however, that he brushes the concerns off with, “l shall not die of a cough” (6). This is ironic because he readers and Mentors know this is true, since Mentors plans in killing Fortunate before his cough has the chance. By using such examples of dramatic irony, in which the reader knows more about something than a character in the story does, Poe takes a simple story of murderous revenge and makes it into something more menacing and intricate” 0. Because the reader has prior knowledge of Motocross’s plan, the irony is not lost on them. This allows for some more of Pope’s articulate, twisted humor to come across. Towards the end of the story, Poe leaves us with a very sick Joke.
Mentors has just finished walling up Fortunate, when he says, “In pace requisites! ” (10). This means “rest in peace”. It is ironic because Mentors has hidden Fortune’s body well, and he knows that the body will never be disturbed. He is seemingly undisturbed by his actions; this makes the comment even creepier. H. P. Liverwort’s comment about irony in horror stories could not be truer when applied to “The Cask of Amontillado”. There are many examples of irony throughout he story.