Parker Freeman Revenge is a Cask Best Served Cold In Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Cask of Amontillado,” the author uses the characterization of Montresor to show that justified vengeance, no matter how well executed, can possibly cause guilt. In the exposition of the story, the reader finds that the protagonist, Montresor, has a major problem with another man. Montresor rationalizes his problem “The thousands injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge.” (pg. 818) Montresor gives reason to his anger, attempting justify his vengeance. As the story progresses, Montresor begins enacting his devious plan to get back at Fortunato.
His plan of action was almost complete if he was able to murder Cassio. Iago’s motives are told throughout the entire play such as, seeking revenge due to the fact that Othello was given the title of lieutenant, throwing out accusations of him sleeping with his wife. In the end he is handed over to the torturers where he finally is quiet and stops giving reasons. Critic Robert Heilman (1956) states “lago’s case is too good; as a hunter of motives has bagged more than the legal limit” (pg.33). Othello is susceptible to lago’s evil.
Throughout the story, Montresor tries to convince the reader that Fortunato is a cruel drunk, and his own plans for murder are just. The tale begins with Montresor saying, "The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could; but when he ventured upon insult, I vowed revenge…” (157). Montresor is basically plotting his revenge and already trying to convince the reader of the gravity of Fotrunato’s many wrong doings, through a blatant exaggeration. The reader can assume that Montresor’s
Poe used symbolism to emphasize the pure disdain that Montresor felt for Fortunato, and the inevitable danger ahead. Edgar Allan Poe’s short story has multiple themes throughout. Revenge is conveyed as a driving factor, Montresor says he won’t stop until he gets revenge for his family. He states, “The thousand injuries Fortunato I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge. You, who so well know the nature of my soul, will not suppose, however, that I gave utterance to a threat.
In saying this, Oedipus is saying that he vows to find the murderer of Laïos, and hopes that their life is accursed. However, this is an example of irony because the audience knows that Oedipus is himself the murderer. This is also an ironic statement because Oedipus’ life is already wretched and will continue to get worse. This statement shows use of verbal irony in the play. Another example of verbal irony comes when Oedipus first begins his address to his people.
Firstly, there must be some form of revenge taking place within the narrative. Secondly, the narrative must include tragic elements. The Revenger, who is in most cases the protagonist and hero or antihero, has been wronged in some way before the beginning of the narrative. They spend much time plotting out a suitable revenge throughout the story, which is usually enacted at the climax. The revenge must be suitable and in kind for the wrong that has been done, and the victim must know of his or her downfall, and why it occurred.
Iago has many rather theoretical reasons for his revenge, one of which being his failure to receive the spot of lieutenant, and the other being that he “suspect[s] the lusty Moor” of sleeping with his wife, Emilia. Iago, being a very jealous and icy man sees that the only way to be “even’d with him” is to go “wife for wife”. Iago’s revenge is a carefully plotted strategy that involves many intricate details and occurrences. This extract tells the reader a lot about Iago’s plan that has previously only been assumed. Iago is so emotionally detached that he claims his ‘love’ for Desdemona exists predominantly “to diet [his] revenge”.
There is one main theme in Shakespeare’s play Othello, and that is revenge. In this play, Shakespeare shows that he believes all revenge is improper, and he displays this through his character Iago. Throughout the play, Iago completes copious events to seek personal revenge. It is very clear to see throughout the plot that Shakespeare implores the reader to acknowledge Iago as a character who completely embodies improper revenge. Iago not only attempts to seek out his own personal revenge, but he manipulates several other characters in order to help him reach his own goal.
Hamlet stabs the king and Laertes remarks, “He is justly serv’d” (5.2.294). Accordingly, Hamlet must also receive justice as well for he unwittingly murdered Polonius. Laertes achieves this retribution for both Polonius and Ophelia, whose death was spurred by Polonius’. Nearing the end of their lives, Laertes beseeches Hamlet, “Exchange forgiveness with me, noble Hamlet: Mine and my father’s death come not upon thee, nor thine on me!” to ensure that the two may pass peacefully without lingering dissention. (5.2.295-297) Gertrude’s lustful pitfall is also resolved when she sacrifices herself for her son by taking the poisoned drink.
The characters of Claudius, Hamlet, and Laertes all feel the need to exact revenge. They each have a poisonous desire to take the law into their own hands, seeking vengeance, which ultimately led to an unfortunate end for each of them. Shakespeare used the supernatural, multiple plot twists, irony, and distinctions between social classes to convey the theme of vengeance being a poisonous desire. Shakespeare skillfully uses the character of the ghost to more clearly understand the manifestation of one’s mind or thoughts. This helps the reader or audience to more clearly understand the depths of emotions that drive the characters to seek vengeance.