EDGAR ALLAN POE
Short Story: “The Cask of Amontillado” Author: Edgar Allan Poe, 1809–49 First published: 1846 The original short story is in the public domain in the United States and in most, if not all, other countries as well. Readers outside the United States should check their own countries’ copyright lawsto be certain they can legally download this e-story. The Online Books Page has an FAQ which gives a summary of copyright durations for many other countries, as well as links to more official sources.
This PDF ebook was created by José Menéndez.
THE thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could; but when he ventured upon insult, I vowed revenge. You, who so well know the natureof 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. A wrong is unredressed when retribution overtakes its redresser. It is equally unredressed when the avenger fails to makehimself felt as such to him who has done the wrong. It must be understood that neither by word nor 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. He had a weak point—this Fortunato—although in other regards he was a man to be respected and even feared. Heprided himself on his connoisseurship in wine. Few Italians have the true virtuoso spirit. For the most part their enthusiasm is adopted to suit the time and opportunity—to practise imposture upon the British and Austrian millionaires. In painting and gemmary, Fortunato, like his countrymen, was a quack—but in the matter of old wines he was sincere. In this respect I did not differ from him materially:I was skilful in the Italian vintages myself, and bought largely whenever I could. It was about dusk, one evening during the supreme madness of the carnival season, that I encountered my friend. He accosted me with excessive warmth, for he had been drinking much. The man wore motley. He had on a tightfitting parti-striped dress, and his head was surmounted by 3
THE CASK OF AMONTILLADOthe conical cap and bells. I was so pleased to see him, that I thought I should never have done wringing his hand. I said to him: “My dear Fortunato, you are luckily met. How remarkably well you are looking to-day! But I have received a pipe of what passes for Amontillado, and I have my doubts.” “How?” said he. “Amontillado? A pipe? Impossible! And in the middle of the carnival!” “I have mydoubts,” I replied; “and I was silly enough to pay the full Amontillado price without consulting you in the matter. You were not to be found, and I was fearful of losing a bargain.” “Amontillado!” “I have my doubts.” “Amontillado!” “And I must satisfy them.” “Amontillado!” “As you are engaged, I am on my way to Luchesi. If any one has a critical turn, it is he. He will tell me——” “Luchesi cannot tellAmontillado from Sherry.” “And yet some fools will have it that his taste is a match for your own.” “Come, let us go.” “Whither?” “To your vaults.” “My friend, no; I will not impose upon your good nature. I perceive you have an engagement. Luchesi——” “I have no engagement;—come.” “My friend, no. It is not the engagement, but the severe cold with which I perceive you are afflicted. The vaults areinsufferably damp. They are encrusted with nitre.” “Let us go, nevertheless. The cold is merely nothing. Amontillado! You have been imposed upon. And as for Luchesi, he cannot distinguish Sherry from Amontillado.”
EDGAR ALLAN POE
Thus speaking, Fortunato possessed himself of my arm. Putting on a mask of black silk, and drawing a roquelaire closely about my person, I suffered him to...
Leer documento completo
Regístrate para leer el documento completo.