Carnival season is usually considered to be a
Christian festive season that occurs before the liturgical season of lent
representing rebirth, renewal, and liberation. It is a time of great
merry-making, partying, costumes, revelry, and drunkenness. However, Poe ousts
these religious beliefs by exposing the condition Fortunato is seen in. He is
excessively drunk, easily duped and in denial of his surroundings. The
symbolism of the carnival setting is for it to function as an agent of chaos and
deception. To concoct someone’s slaying amidst all of the enjoyment in a carnival
is most unlooked-for. Usually in a dark and horror tale of revenge, one would
expect a more appropriate setting of cliché like a dark and gloomy night. The
carnival setting could also symbolize how one may be easily swindled by smiles
and hankering than by someone with a mask. The fact that a teetotal friend is
two-faced and more perfidious than any masked figure divulges a petrifying
cynicism of the human nature.