Cask of Amontillado compared to Poes own lifegreenspun.com : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread
I need to find as many points in the cask of amontillado that conflict or tell about E.A. Poe's own life. If anyone's got any input it would really help
-- Anonymous, September 30, 2000
In his biography of Poe, Kenneth Silverman seems to indicate that the bulk of the tale, The Cask of Amontillado is an allegorical representation of Poes relationship to John Allan, Poes foster father. In his book, Edgar Allan Poe Mournful and Never-ending Remembrance, Silverman compares the similarities between Fortunato and John Allan and even points out that the name Allan is anagramatically embodied within the title word Amontillado.
Other similarities include the fact that the motto emblazoned on the family crest of the House of Montresor, Nemo Me Impune Lacessit is of Scottish origin and was used as a motto for the Order of the Thistle. John Allan was a Scotsman.
Fortunato fancied himself a connoisseur of fine wines. Allan always maintained an interest in vintage wines.
Fortunato was wealthy, respected, admired and beloved. So Allan was thought to be as well. The parallel here was that Poe felt they were both endowed these qualities through fear and bullying.
Both were a member of the Masons.
Poe saw them both as pompous, arrogant buffoons, undeserving of respect or wealth.
I dont know that I agree with Silverman in total but his views are interesting. In studying Poe, one element in this tale that comes to the forefront is the humiliation Montresor had suffered at the hands of Fortunato. Poe had similar experiences with the New York literary societies who were hesitant to accept Poe as literary equal. Some said it was his Virginia background and his Southern Gentleman demeanor. Others said it had more to do with his literary critiques that were often brutal and uncompromising.
-- Anonymous, October 03, 2000