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Introduction: country

United States
The United States of America (USA or U.S.A.), commonly referred to as the United
States (US or U.S.), America, and sometimes the States, is a federal republic

consisting of
50 states and a federal district. The 48 contiguous states and Washington, D.., are in central !orth
"merica bet#een anada and $e%ico. The state of "las&a is the north#estern part of !orth "merica
and the state of 'a#aii is an archipelago in the mid()acific. The country also has fi*e populated and
nine unpopulated territories in the )acific and the aribbean. "t +.,- million s.uare miles
(/.01 million &m
) and #ith around +-8 million people, the 2nited 3tates is the #orld4s third or fourth(
largest country by total area and third(largest by population. 5t is one of the #orld4s most ethnically
di*erse and multicultural nations, the product of large(scale immigration from many countries.
The geography and climate of the 2nited 3tates is also e%tremely di*erse, and it is home to a #ide
*ariety of #ildlife.
)aleo(5ndians migrated from 6urasia to #hat is no# the 2.3. mainland around -5,000 years ago,
#ith 6uropean coloni7ation beginning in the -0th century. The 2nited 3tates emerged from -+ 8ritish
colonies located along the "tlantic seaboard. Disputes bet#een 9reat 8ritain and these colonies led
to the "merican :e*olution. ;n <uly 4, -,,0, as the colonies #ere fighting 9reat 8ritain in
the "merican :e*olutionary War, delegates from the -+ colonies unanimously issued
the Declaration of 5ndependence. The #ar ended in -,8+ #ith the recognition of independence of
the 2nited 3tates from the =ingdom of 9reat 8ritain, and #as the first successful #ar of
independence against a 6uropean colonial empire. The current onstitution #as adopted on
3eptember -,, -,8,. The first ten amendments, collecti*ely named the 8ill of :ights, #ere ratified in
-,/- and guarantee many fundamental ci*il rights and freedoms.
Dri*en by the doctrine of manifest destiny, the 2nited 3tates embar&ed on a *igorous e%pansion
across !orth "merica throughout the -/th century. This in*ol*ed displacing nati*e tribes, ac.uiring
ne# territories, and gradually admitting ne# states. The "merican i*il War ended legal country. 8y
the end of the -/th century, the 2nited 3tates e%tended into the )acific ;cean, and its economy #as
the #orld4s largest. The 3panish>"merican War and World War 5 confirmed the country4s status as a
global military po#er. The 2nited 3tates emerged from World War 55 as a global superpo#er, the first
country #ith nuclear #eapons, and a permanent member of the 2nited !ations 3ecurity ouncil.
The end of the old War and the dissolution of the 3o*iet 2nion left the 2nited 3tates as the sole
The 2nited 3tates is a de*eloped country and has the #orld4s largest national economy, #ith an
estimated 9D) in 10-+ of ?-0.8 trillion@1+A of global nominal 9D) and -/A at purchasing(po#er
parity. The economy is fueled by an abundance of natural resources and high #or&er producti*ity,
#ith per capita 9D) being the #orld4s si%th(highest in 10-0. While the 2.3. economy is
considered post(industrial, it continues to be one of the #orld4s largest manufacturers. The 2.3. has
the highest mean and fourth highest median household income in the ;6D as #ell as the highest
gross a*erage #age, though it has the fourth most une.ual income distribution, #ith roughly -5A of
the population li*ing in po*erty as defined by the 2.3. ensus. The country accounts for +0.0A
of global military spending,
being the #orld4s foremost economic and military po#er, a prominent
political and cultural force, and a leader in scientific research and technological inno*ation.
5n -50,, the 9erman cartographer $artin WaldseemDller produced a #orld map on #hich he named
the lands of the Western 'emisphere E"mericaE after the 5talian e%plorer and cartographer "merigo
Fespucci (GatinHAmericus Vespucius). The first documentary e*idence of the phrase E2nited 3tates
of "mericaE is from a letter dated <anuary 1, -,,0, #ritten by 3tephen $oylan, 6s.., 9eorge
Washington4s aide(de(camp and $uster($aster 9eneral of the ontinental "rmy. "ddressed to Gt.
ol. <oseph :eed, $oylan e%pressed his #ish to carry the Efull and ample po#ers of the 2nited
3tates of "mericaE to 3pain to assist in the re*olutionary #ar effort.
The first publicly published e*idence of the phrase E2nited 3tates of "mericaE #as in an
anonymously #ritten essay in The Virginia Gazette ne#spaper in Williamsburg, Firginia, on "pril 0,
-,,0. 5n <une -,,0, Thomas <efferson included the phrase E2!5T6D 3T"T63 ;I "$6:5"E in all
capitali7ed letters in the headline of his Eoriginal :ough draughtE of the Declaration of 5ndependence.
5n the final Iourth of <uly *ersion of the Declaration, the pertinent section of the title #as changed to
read, EThe unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united 3tates of "mericaJ. 5n -,,, the "rticles of
onfederation announced, EThe 3tile of this onfederacy shall be 4The 2nited 3tates of "merica4E.
The short form E2nited 3tatesE is also standard. ;ther common forms include the E2.3.E, the
E2.3.".E, and E"mericaE. ollo.uial names include the E2.3. of ".E and, internationally, the E3tatesE.
EolumbiaE, a name popular in poetry and songs of the late -,00s,

deri*es its origin from hristopher
olumbusK it appears in the name EDistrict of olumbiaE. 5n non(6nglish languages, the name is
fre.uently translated as the translation of either the E2nited 3tatesE or E2nited 3tates of "mericaE,
and collo.uially as E"mericaE. 5n addition, an abbre*iation (e.g. 23") is sometimes used.
The phrase E2nited 3tatesE #as originally treated as plural, a description of a collection of
independent states@e.g., Ethe 2nited 3tates areE@including in the Thirteenth "mendment to the
2nited 3tates onstitution, ratified in -805. 5t became common to treat it as singular, a single unit@
e.g., Ethe 2nited 3tates isE@after the end of the i*il War. The singular form is no# standardK the
plural form is retained in the idiom Ethese 2nited 3tatesE.

The difference has been described as more
significant than one of usage, but reflecting the difference bet#een a collection of states and a unit.
The standard #ay to refer to a citi7en of the 2nited 3tates is as an E"mericanE. E2nited 3tatesE,
E"mericanE and E2.3.E are used to refer to the country adLecti*ally (E"merican *aluesE, E2.3. forcesE).
E"mericanE is rarely used in 6nglish to refer to subLects not connected #ith the 2nited 3tates
"uthorH 6dgar "llan )oe
Edgar Allan Poe (Mp o MK born Edgar PoeK <anuary -/, -80/ > ;ctober ,, -84/) #as an "merican
author, poet, editor, and literary critic, considered part of the "merican :omantic $o*ement. 8est
&no#n for his tales of mystery and the macabre, )oe #as one of the earliest "merican practitioners
of the short story, and is generally considered the in*entor of the detecti*e fiction genre. 'e is further
credited #ith contributing to the emerging genre of science fiction. 'e #as the first #ell(&no#n
"merican #riter to try to earn a li*ing through #riting alone, resulting in a financially difficult life and
8orn in 8oston, he #as the second child of t#o actors. 'is father abandoned the family in -8-0, and
his mother died the follo#ing year. Thus orphaned, the child #as ta&en in by <ohn and Irances
"llan, of :ichmond, Firginia. "lthough they ne*er formally adopted him, )oe #as #ith them #ell into
young adulthood. Tension de*eloped later as <ohn "llan and 6dgar repeatedly clashed o*er debts,
including those incurred by gambling, and the cost of secondary education for the young man. )oe
attended the 2ni*ersity of Firginia for one semester but left due to lac& of money. )oe .uarreled #ith
"llan o*er the funds for his education and enlisted in the "rmy in -81, under an assumed name. 5t
#as at this time his publishing career began, albeit humbly, #ith an anonymous collection of
poems, Tamerlane and Other Poems (-81,), credited only to Ea 8ostonianE. With the death of
Irances "llan in -81/, )oe and "llan reached a temporary rapprochement. Gater failing as an
officer4s cadet at West )oint and declaring a firm #ish to be a poet and #riter, )oe parted #ays #ith
<ohn "llan.
)oe s#itched his focus to prose and spent the ne%t se*eral years #or&ing for literary Lournals and
periodicals, becoming &no#n for his o#n style of literary criticism. 'is #or& forced him to mo*e
among se*eral cities, including 8altimore, )hiladelphia, and !e# Nor& ity. 5n 8altimore in -8+5, he
married Firginia lemm, his -+(year(old cousin. 5n <anuary -845 )oe published his poem, EThe
:a*enE, to instant success. 'is #ife died of tuberculosis t#o years after its publication. Ior years, he
had been planning to produce his o#n Lournal, The Penn (later renamed The Stylus), though he died
before it could be produced. ;n ;ctober ,, -84/, at age 40, )oe died in 8altimoreK the cause of his
death is un&no#n and has been *ariously attributed to alcohol, brain congestion, cholera, drugs,
heart disease, rabies, suicide, tuberculosis, and other agents.
)oe and his #or&s influenced literature in the 2nited 3tates and around the #orld, as #ell as in
speciali7ed fields, such as cosmology and cryptography. )oe and his #or& appear throughout
popular culture in literature, music, films, and tele*ision. " number of his homes are dedicated
museums today. The $ystery Writers of "merica present an annual a#ard &no#n as the 6dgar
"#ard for distinguished #or& in the mystery genre.
Life and career
Early life
'e #as born 6dgar )oe in 8oston, $assachusetts, on <anuary -/, -80/, the second child of
6nglish(born actress 6li7abeth "rnold 'op&ins )oe and actor Da*id )oe, <r. 'e had an elder
brother, William 'enry Geonard )oe, and a younger sister, :osalie )oe. Their grandfather, Da*id
)oe, 3r., had emigrated from a*an, 5reland, to "merica around the year -,50. 6dgar may ha*e
been named after a character in William 3ha&espeare4s King Lear, a play the couple #as performing
in -80/. 'is father abandoned their family in -8-0, and his mother died a year later from
consumption (pulmonary tuberculosis). )oe #as then ta&en into the home of <ohn "llan, a
successful 3cottish merchant in :ichmond, Firginia, #ho dealt in a *ariety of goods including
tobacco, cloth, #heat, tombstones, and sla*es. The "llans ser*ed as a foster family and ga*e him
the name E6dgar "llan )oeE,though they ne*er formally adopted him.
The "llan family had )oe bapti7ed in the 6piscopal hurch in -8-1. <ohn "llan alternately spoiled
and aggressi*ely disciplined his foster son. The family, including )oe and "llan4s #ife, Irances
Falentine "llan, sailed to 8ritain in -8-5. )oe attended the grammar school in 5r*ine, 3cotland
(#here <ohn "llan #as born) for a short period in -8-5, before reLoining the family in Gondon in -8-0.
There he studied at a boarding school in helsea until summer -8-,. 'e #as subse.uently entered
at the :e*erend <ohn 8ransby4s $anor 'ouse 3chool at 3to&e !e#ington, then a suburb four miles
(0 &m) north of Gondon.
)oe mo*ed bac& #ith the "llans to :ichmond, Firginia in -810. 5n -814 )oe ser*ed as the lieutenant
of the :ichmond youth honor guard as :ichmond celebrated the *isit of the $ar.uis de Gafayette. 5n
$arch -815, <ohn "llan4s uncle

and business benefactor William 9alt, said to be one of the
#ealthiest men in :ichmond, died and left "llan se*eral acres of real estate. The inheritance #as
estimated at ?,50,000. 8y summer -815, "llan celebrated his e%pansi*e #ealth by purchasing a
t#o(story bric& home named $olda*ia.
)oe may ha*e become engaged to 3arah 6lmira :oyster before he registered at the one(year(
old 2ni*ersity of Firginia in Iebruary -810 to study ancient and modern languages. The uni*ersity, in
its infancy, #as established on the ideals of its founder, Thomas <efferson. 5t had strict rules against
gambling, horses, guns, tobacco and alcohol, but these rules #ere generally ignored. <efferson had
enacted a system of student self(go*ernment, allo#ing students to choose their o#n studies, ma&e
their o#n arrangements for boarding, and report all #rongdoing to the faculty. The uni.ue system
#as still in chaos, and there #as a high dropout rate. During his time there, )oe lost touch #ith
:oyster and also became estranged from his foster father o*er gambling debts. )oe claimed that
"llan had not gi*en him sufficient money to register for classes, purchase te%ts, and procure and
furnish a dormitory. "llan did send additional money and clothes, but )oe4s debts increased. )oe
ga*e up on the uni*ersity after a year, and, not feeling #elcome in :ichmond, especially #hen he
learned that his s#eetheart :oyster had married "le%ander 3helton, he tra*eled to 8oston in "pril
-81,, sustaining himself #ith odd Lobs as a cler& and ne#spaper #riter. "t some point he started
using the pseudonym 'enri Ge :ennet.
Publishing career
"fter his brother4s death, )oe began more earnest attempts to start his career as a #riter. 'e chose
a difficult time in "merican publishing to do so. 'e #as the first #ell(&no#n "merican to try to li*e by
#riting alone

and #as hampered by the lac& of an international copyright la#. )ublishers often
pirated copies of 8ritish #or&s rather than paying for ne# #or& by "mericans. The industry #as also
particularly hurt by the )anic of -8+,. Despite a booming gro#th in "merican periodicals around this
time period, fueled in part by ne# technology, many did not last beyond a fe# issues and publishers
often refused to pay their #riters or paid them much later than they promised. )oe, throughout his
attempts to li*e as a #riter, repeatedly had to resort to humiliating pleas for money and other
"fter his early attempts at poetry, )oe had turned his attention to prose. 'e placed a fe# stories #ith
a )hiladelphia publication and began #or& on his only drama, Politian. The Baltimore Saturday
Visiter a#arded )oe a pri7e in ;ctober -8++ for his short story E$3. Iound in a 8ottleE.The story
brought him to the attention of <ohn ). =ennedy, a 8altimorean of considerable means. 'e helped
)oe place some of his stories, and introduced him to Thomas W. White, editor of the Southern
Literary Messenger in :ichmond. )oe became assistant editor of the periodical in "ugust -8+5, but
#as discharged #ithin a fe# #ee&s for ha*ing been caught drun& by his boss. :eturning to
8altimore, )oe secretly married Firginia, his cousin, on 3eptember 11, -8+5. 'e #as 10 and she
#as -+, though she is listed on the marriage certificate as being 1-. :einstated by White after
promising good beha*ior, )oe #ent bac& to :ichmond #ith Firginia and her mother. 'e remained at
the Messenger until <anuary -8+,. During this period, )oe claimed that its circulation increased from
,00 to +,500. 'e published se*eral poems, boo& re*ie#s, criti.ues, and stories in the paper. ;n $ay
-0, -8+0, he had a second #edding ceremony in :ichmond #ith Firginia lemm, this time in public.
The Narratie o! Arthur Gordon Pym o! Nantuc"et #as published and #idely re*ie#ed in -8+8. 5n the
summer of -8+/, )oe became assistant editor of Burton#s Gentleman#s Magazine. 'e published
numerous articles, stories, and re*ie#s, enhancing his reputation as a trenchant critic that he had
established at the Southern Literary Messenger. "lso in -8+/, the collection Tales o! the Grotes$ue
and Ara%es$ue #as published in t#o *olumes, though he made little money off of it and it recei*ed
mi%ed re*ie#s. )oe left Burton#s after about a year and found a position as assistant at Graham#s
5n <une -840, )oe published a prospectus announcing his intentions to start his o#n Lournal, The
Stylus. ;riginally, )oe intended to call the Lournal The Penn, as it #ould ha*e been based in
)hiladelphia, )ennsyl*ania. 5n the <une 0, -840 issue of )hiladelphia4s Saturday &ening Post, )oe
bought ad*ertising space for his prospectusH 'Prospectus o! the Penn Magazine( a Monthly Literary
)ournal to %e edited and pu%lished in the city o! Philadelphia %y &dgar A* Poe*' The Lournal #as
ne*er produced before )oe4s death. "round this time, he attempted to secure a position #ith
the Tyler administration, claiming he #as a member of the Whig )arty. 'e hoped to be appointed to
the ustom 'ouse in )hiladelphia #ith help from president Tyler4s son :obert, an ac.uaintance of
)oe4s friend Irederic& Thomas. )oe failed to sho# up for a meeting #ith Thomas to discuss the
appointment in mid(3eptember -841, claiming to ha*e been sic&, though Thomas belie*ed he had
been drun&. Though he #as promised an appointment, all positions #ere filled by others.
;ne e*ening in <anuary -841, Firginia sho#ed the first signs of consumption, no# &no#n
as tuberculosis, #hile singing and playing the piano. )oe described it as brea&ing a blood *essel in
her throat. 3he only partially reco*ered. )oe began to drin& more hea*ily under the stress of
Firginia4s illness. 'e left Graham#s and attempted to find a ne# position, for a time angling for a
go*ernment post. 'e returned to !e# Nor&, #here he #or&ed briefly at the &ening Mirror before
becoming editor of the Broad+ay ,ournal and, later, sole o#ner. There he alienated himself from
other #riters by publicly accusing 'enry Wads#orth Gongfello# of plagiarism, though Gongfello#
ne*er responded. ;n <anuary 1/, -845, his poem EThe :a*enE appeared in the &ening Mirror and
became a popular sensation. Though it made )oe a household name almost instantly, he #as paid
only ?/ for its publication. 5t #as concurrently published in The American -eie+. A /hig
,ournal under the pseudonym EOuarlesE.
The Broad+ay ,ournal failed in -840. )oe mo*ed to a cottage in the Iordham section of The 8ron%,
!e# Nor&. That home, &no#n today as the E)oe ottageE, is on the southeast corner of the 9rand
oncourse and =ingsbridge :oad, #here he befriended the <esuits at 3t. <ohn4s ollege nearby
(no# Iordham 2ni*ersity). Firginia died there on <anuary +0, -84,. 8iographers and critics often
suggest that )oe4s fre.uent theme of the Edeath of a beautiful #omanE stems from the repeated loss
of #omen throughout his life, including his #ife.
5ncreasingly unstable after his #ife4s death, )oe attempted to court the poet 3arah 'elen Whitman,
#ho li*ed in )ro*idence, :hode 5sland. Their engagement failed, purportedly because of )oe4s
drin&ing and erratic beha*ior. 'o#e*er, there is also strong e*idence that Whitman4s mother
inter*ened and did much to derail their relationship. )oe then returned to :ichmond and resumed a
relationship #ith his childhood s#eetheart, 3arah 6lmira :oyster.

;n ;ctober +, -84/, )oe #as found on the streets of 8altimore delirious, Ein great distress, and... in
need of immediate assistanceE, according to the man #ho found him, <oseph W. Wal&er. 'e #as
ta&en to the Washington $edical ollege, #here he died on 3unday, ;ctober ,, -84/, at 5H00 in the
morning. )oe #as ne*er coherent long enough to e%plain ho# he came to be in his dire condition,
and, oddly, #as #earing clothes that #ere not his o#n. )oe is said to ha*e repeatedly called out the
name E:eynoldsE on the night before his death, though it is unclear to #hom he #as referring. 3ome
sources say )oe4s final #ords #ere EGord help my poor soul.E "ll medical records, including his death
certificate, ha*e been lost. !e#spapers at the time reported )oe4s death as Econgestion of the brainE
or Ecerebral inflammationE, common euphemisms for deaths from disreputable causes such as
alcoholism. The actual cause of death remains a mystery. 3peculation has included delirium
tremens, heart disease, epilepsy, syphilis, meningeal inflammation, cholera

and rabies. ;ne theory,
dating from -8,1, indicates that cooping > in #hich un#illing citi7ens #ho #ere forced to *ote for a
particular candidate #ere occasionally &illed > #as the cause of )oe4s death
The short storyH
By Edgar Allan Poe
THE thousand injuries of Fortunato I had orne as I est !ould" ut #hen he $entured u%on insult
I $o#ed re$enge& 'ou" #ho so #ell (no# the nature of )y soul" #ill not su%%ose" ho#e$er" that
ga$e utteran!e to a threat& At length I #ould e a$enged* this #as a %oint definitely" settled ++ut
the $ery definiti$eness #ith #hi!h it #as resol$ed %re!luded the idea of ris(& I )ust not only
%unish ut %unish #ith i)%unity& A #rong is unredressed #hen retriution o$erta(es its
redresser& It is e,ually unredressed #hen the a$enger fails to )a(e hi)self felt as su!h to hi)
#ho has done the #rong&
It )ust e understood that neither y #ord nor deed had I gi$en Fortunato !ause to dout )y
good #ill& I !ontinued" as #as )y in to s)ile in his fa!e" and he did not %er!ei$e that )y to s)ile
no# #as at the thought of his i))olation&
He had a #ea( %oint ++this Fortunato ++although in other regards he #as a )an to e res%e!ted
and e$en feared& He %rided hi)self on his !onnoisseurshi% in #ine& Fe# Italians ha$e the true
$irtuoso s%irit& For the )ost %art their enthusias) is ado%ted to suit the ti)e and o%%ortunity" to
%ra!tise i)%osture u%on the British and Austrian )illionaires& In %ainting and ge))ary"
Fortunato" li(e his !ountry)en" #as a ,ua!(" ut in the )atter of old #ines he #as sin!ere& In
this res%e!t I did not differ fro) hi) )aterially* ++I #as s(ilful in the Italian $intages )yself" and
ought largely #hene$er I !ould&
It #as aout dus(" one e$ening during the su%re)e )adness of the !arni$al season" that I
en!ountered )y friend& He a!!osted )e #ith e-!essi$e #ar)th" for he had een drin(ing )u!h&
The )an #ore )otley& He had on a tight+fitting %arti+stri%ed dress" and his head #as sur)ounted
y the !oni!al !a% and ells& I #as so %leased to see hi) that I thought I should ne$er ha$e done
#ringing his hand&
I said to hi) ++./y dear Fortunato" you are lu!(ily )et& Ho# re)ar(aly #ell you are loo(ing
to+day& But I ha$e re!ei$ed a %i%e of #hat %asses for A)ontillado" and I ha$e )y douts&.
.Ho#0. said he& .A)ontillado" A %i%e0 I)%ossile1 And in the )iddle of the !arni$al1.
.I ha$e )y douts". I re%lied* .and I #as silly enough to %ay the full A)ontillado %ri!e #ithout
!onsulting you in the )atter& 'ou #ere not to e found" and I #as fearful of losing a argain&.
.I ha$e )y douts&.
.And I )ust satisfy the)&.
.As you are engaged" I a) on )y #ay to 2u!hresi& If any one has a !riti!al turn it is he& He #ill
tell )e ++.
.2u!hresi !annot tell A)ontillado fro) 3herry&.
.And yet so)e fools #ill ha$e it that his taste is a )at!h for your o#n&
.4o)e" let us go&.
.To your $aults&.
./y friend" no* I #ill not i)%ose u%on your good nature& I %er!ei$e you ha$e an engage)ent&
.I ha$e no engage)ent* ++!o)e&.
./y friend" no& It is not the engage)ent" ut the se$ere !old #ith #hi!h I %er!ei$e you are
affli!ted& The $aults are insufferaly da)%& They are en!rusted #ith nitre&.
.2et us go" ne$ertheless& The !old is )erely nothing& A)ontillado1 'ou ha$e een i)%osed u%on&
And as for 2u!hresi" he !annot distinguish 3herry fro) A)ontillado&.
Thus s%ea(ing" Fortunato %ossessed hi)self of )y ar)* and %utting on a )as( of la!( sil( and
dra#ing a ro,uelaire !losely aout )y %erson" I suffered hi) to hurry )e to )y %ala66o&
There #ere no attendants at ho)e* they had as!onded to )a(e )erry in honour of the ti)e& I
had told the) that I should not return until the )orning" and had gi$en the) e-%li!it orders not
to stir fro) the house& These orders #ere suffi!ient" I #ell (ne#" to insure their i))ediate
disa%%earan!e" one and all" as soon as )y a!( #as turned&
I too( fro) their s!on!es t#o fla)eau-" and gi$ing one to Fortunato" o#ed hi) through
se$eral suites of roo)s to the ar!h#ay that led into the $aults& I %assed do#n a long and #inding
stair!ase" re,uesting hi) to e !autious as he follo#ed& 5e !a)e at length to the foot of the
des!ent" and stood together u%on the da)% ground of the !ata!o)s of the /ontresors&
The gait of )y friend #as unsteady" and the ells u%on his !a% jingled as he strode&
.The %i%e". he said&
.It is farther on". said I* .ut oser$e the #hite #e+#or( #hi!h glea)s fro) these !a$ern
He turned to#ards )e" and loo(ed into )y e$es #ith t#o fil)y ors that distilled the rheu) of
.7itre0. he as(ed" at length&
.7itre". I re%lied& .Ho# long ha$e you had that !ough0.
.8gh1 ugh1 ugh1 ++ugh1 ugh1 ugh1 ++ugh1 ugh1 ugh1 ++ugh1 ugh1 ugh1 ++ugh1 ugh1 ugh1.
/y %oor friend found it i)%ossile to re%ly for )any )inutes&
.It is nothing". he said" at last&
.4o)e". I said" #ith de!ision" .#e #ill go a!(* your health is %re!ious& 'ou are ri!h" res%e!ted"
ad)ired" elo$ed* you are ha%%y" as on!e I #as& 'ou are a )an to e )issed& For )e it is no
)atter& 5e #ill go a!(* you #ill e ill" and I !annot e res%onsile& Besides" there is 2u!hresi
.Enough". he said* .the !ough9s a )ere nothing* it #ill not (ill )e& I shall not die of a !ough&.
.True ++true". I re%lied* .and" indeed" I had no intention of alar)ing you unne!essarily ++ut you
should use all %ro%er !aution& A draught of this /edo! #ill defend us fro) the da)%s&
Here I (no!(ed off the ne!( of a ottle #hi!h I dre# fro) a long ro# of its fello#s that lay u%on
the )ould&
.:rin(". I said" %resenting hi) the #ine&
He raised it to his li%s #ith a leer& He %aused and nodded to )e fa)iliarly" #hile his ells jingled&
.I drin(". he said" .to the uried that re%ose around us&.
.And I to your long life&.
He again too( )y ar)" and #e %ro!eeded&
.These $aults". he said" .are e-tensi$e&.
.The /ontresors". I re%lied" .#ere a great and nu)erous fa)ily&.
.I forget your ar)s&.
.A huge hu)an foot d9or" in a field a6ure* the foot !rushes a ser%ent ra)%ant #hose fangs are
i)edded in the heel&.
.And the )otto0.
.7e)o )e i)%une la!essit&.
.;ood1. he said&
The #ine s%ar(led in his eyes and the ells jingled& /y o#n fan!y gre# #ar) #ith the /edo!&
5e had %assed through long #alls of %iled s(eletons" #ith !as(s and %un!heons inter)ingling"
into the in)ost re!esses of the !ata!o)s& I %aused again" and this ti)e I )ade old to sei6e
Fortunato y an ar) ao$e the elo#&
.The nitre1. I said* .see" it in!reases& It hangs li(e )oss u%on the $aults& 5e are elo# the ri$er9s
ed& The dro%s of )oisture tri!(le a)ong the ones& 4o)e" #e #ill go a!( ere it is too late&
'our !ough ++.
.It is nothing". he said* .let us go on& But first" another draught of the /edo!&.
I ro(e and rea!hed hi) a flagon of :e ;ra$e& He e)%tied it at a reath& His eyes flashed #ith a
fier!e light& He laughed and thre# the ottle u%#ards #ith a gesti!ulation I did not understand&
I loo(ed at hi) in sur%rise& He re%eated the )o$e)ent ++a grotes,ue one&
.'ou do not !o)%rehend0. he said&
.7ot I". I re%lied&
.Then you are not of the rotherhood&.
.'ou are not of the )asons&.
.'es" yes". I said* .yes" yes&.
.'ou0 I)%ossile1 A )ason0.
.A )ason". I re%lied&
.A sign". he said" .a sign&.
.It is this". I ans#ered" %rodu!ing fro) eneath the folds of )y ro,uelaire a tro#el&
.'ou jest". he e-!lai)ed" re!oiling a fe# %a!es& .But let us %ro!eed to the A)ontillado&.
.Be it so". I said" re%la!ing the tool eneath the !loa( and again offering hi) )y ar)& He leaned
u%on it hea$ily& 5e !ontinued our route in sear!h of the A)ontillado& 5e %assed through a range
of lo# ar!hes" des!ended" %assed on" and des!ending again" arri$ed at a dee% !ry%t" in #hi!h the
foulness of the air !aused our fla)eau- rather to glo# than fla)e&
At the )ost re)ote end of the !ry%t there a%%eared another less s%a!ious& Its #alls had een lined
#ith hu)an re)ains" %iled to the $ault o$erhead" in the fashion of the great !ata!o)s of Paris&
Three sides of this interior !ry%t #ere still orna)ented in this )anner& Fro) the fourth side the
ones had een thro#n do#n" and lay %ro)is!uously u%on the earth" for)ing at one %oint a
)ound of so)e si6e& 5ithin the #all thus e-%osed y the dis%la!ing of the ones" #e %er!ei$ed a
still interior !ry%t or re!ess" in de%th aout four feet" in #idth three" in height si- or se$en& It
see)ed to ha$e een !onstru!ted for no es%e!ial use #ithin itself" ut for)ed )erely the inter$al
et#een t#o of the !olossal su%%orts of the roof of the !ata!o)s" and #as a!(ed y one of
their !ir!u)s!riing #alls of solid granite&
It #as in $ain that Fortunato" u%lifting his dull tor!h" endea$oured to %ry into the de%th of the
re!ess& Its ter)ination the feele light did not enale us to see&
.Pro!eed". I said* .herein is the A)ontillado& As for 2u!hresi ++.
.He is an ignora)us". interru%ted )y friend" as he ste%%ed unsteadily for#ard" #hile I follo#ed
i))ediately at his heels& In ni!he" and finding an instant he had rea!hed the e-tre)ity of the
ni!he" and finding his %rogress arrested y the ro!(" stood stu%idly e#ildered& A )o)ent )ore
and I had fettered hi) to the granite& In its surfa!e #ere t#o iron sta%les" distant fro) ea!h other
aout t#o feet" hori6ontally& Fro) one of these de%ended a short !hain" fro) the other a %adlo!(&
Thro#ing the lin(s aout his #aist" it #as ut the #or( of a fe# se!onds to se!ure it& He #as too
)u!h astounded to resist& 5ithdra#ing the (ey I ste%%ed a!( fro) the re!ess&
.Pass your hand". I said" .o$er the #all* you !annot hel% feeling the nitre& Indeed" it is $ery
da)%& <n!e )ore let )e i)%lore you to return& 7o0 Then I )ust %ositi$ely lea$e you& But I )ust
first render you all the little attentions in )y %o#er&.
.The A)ontillado1. eja!ulated )y friend" not yet re!o$ered fro) his astonish)ent&
.True". I re%lied* .the A)ontillado&.
As I said these #ords I usied )yself a)ong the %ile of ones of #hi!h I ha$e efore s%o(en&
Thro#ing the) aside" I soon un!o$ered a ,uantity of uilding stone and )ortar& 5ith these
)aterials and #ith the aid of )y tro#el" I egan $igorously to #all u% the entran!e of the ni!he&
I had s!ar!ely laid the first tier of the )asonry #hen I dis!o$ered that the into-i!ation of
Fortunato had in a great )easure #orn off& The earliest indi!ation I had of this #as a lo#
)oaning !ry fro) the de%th of the re!ess& It #as not the !ry of a drun(en )an& There #as then a
long and ostinate silen!e& I laid the se!ond tier" and the third" and the fourth* and then I heard
the furious $irations of the !hain& The noise lasted for se$eral )inutes" during #hi!h" that I
)ight hear(en to it #ith the )ore satisfa!tion" I !eased )y laours and sat do#n u%on the ones&
5hen at last the !lan(ing susided" I resu)ed the tro#el" and finished #ithout interru%tion the
fifth" the si-th" and the se$enth tier& The #all #as no# nearly u%on a le$el #ith )y reast& I again
%aused" and holding the fla)eau- o$er the )ason+#or(" thre# a fe# feele rays u%on the figure
A su!!ession of loud and shrill s!rea)s" ursting suddenly fro) the throat of the !hained for)"
see)ed to thrust )e $iolently a!(& For a rief )o)ent I hesitated" I tre)led& 8nsheathing )y
ra%ier" I egan to gro%e #ith it aout the re!ess* ut the thought of an instant reassured )e& I
%la!ed )y hand u%on the solid fari! of the !ata!o)s" and felt satisfied& I rea%%roa!hed the
#all* I re%lied to the yells of hi) #ho !la)oured& I re+e!hoed" I aided" I sur%assed the) in
$olu)e and in strength& I did this" and the !la)ourer gre# still&
It #as no# )idnight" and )y tas( #as dra#ing to a !lose& I had !o)%leted the eighth" the ninth
and the tenth tier& I had finished a %ortion of the last and the ele$enth* there re)ained ut a single
stone to e fitted and %lastered in& I struggled #ith its #eight* I %la!ed it %artially in its destined
%osition& But no# there !a)e fro) out the ni!he a lo# laugh that ere!ted the hairs u%on )y head&
It #as su!!eeded y a sad $oi!e" #hi!h I had diffi!ulty in re!ogni6ing as that of the nole
Fortunato& The $oi!e said++
.Ha1 ha1 ha1 ++he1 he1 he1 ++a $ery good jo(e" indeed ++an e-!ellent jest& 5e #ill ha$e )any a
ri!h laugh aout it at the %ala66o ++he1 he1 he1 ++o$er our #ine ++he1 he1 he1.
.The A)ontillado1. I said&
.He1 he1 he1 ++he1 he1 he1 ++yes" the A)ontillado& But is it not getting late0 5ill not they e
a#aiting us at the %ala66o" the 2ady Fortunato and the rest0 2et us e gone&.
.'es". I said" .let us e gone&.
.For the lo$e of ;od" /ontresor1.
.'es". I said" .for the lo$e of ;od1.
But to these #ords I hear(ened in $ain for a re%ly& I gre# i)%atient& I !alled aloud ++
7o ans#er& I !alled again ++
7o ans#er still& I thrust a tor!h through the re)aining a%erture and let it fall #ithin& There !a)e
forth in return only a jingling of the ells& /y heart gre# si!(* it #as the da)%ness of the
!ata!o)s that )ade it so& I hastened to )a(e an end of )y laour& I for!ed the last stone into its
%osition* I %lastered it u%& Against the ne# )asonry I re+ere!ted the old ra)%art of ones& For the
half of a !entury no )ortal has distured the)& In %a!e re,uies!at1

7a)e= Alyssa 3 >ui6
'r& ? se!&= I@+lead