The Black Cat: a short story by Edgar Allan Poe

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The Black Cat

Filled with mysticism and intrigue, black cats have proven that they evoke in us some pretty dark sentiments.  This is why they are sometimes associated with obscure topics. This is perhaps the case of “The Black Cat“, a short story by Edgar Allan Poe.

The short story explores the psychology of guilt.  Basically, a murderer has committed abominable crimes and feels unassailable, until he reveals himself and comes clean, tormented by the constant reminder of his guilt.

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The Story

The Black Cat is a short story written by American writer Edgar Allan Poe and it was published in 1845.  The narrative of the story is in the first person and from the perspective of a murderer filled with guilt.

Actually, the story is pretty deep in its plot even though it is a delight to read.  It is intriguing and you are on a grip, wondering how is it all going to end.  You are equally glad that it is too short but then maybe you wanted more.

The success of The Black Cat has rendered the short story a series of adaptations from other authors and even motion pictures.

The Plot

The narrator tells the story of how he had a black cat named Pluto, among other pets. Cat and human become friends until one day he comes home drunk. Firstly, he is certain that the cat is avoiding him.  Secondly, he tries to seize him. However, the cat bites and runs away.  Furious, the narrator seizes that cat, pulls out a pen-knife from his pocket, and gouges the cat´s eye.

The cat is now terrified, but the narrator, ignoring his sentiments of regret, grabs the cat and hangs him. The cat dies.

He then gets to know another cat, that has an interesting ending for him and the wife. Ultimately: don´t miss this story, you will not want to stop.


The narrator is clearly on an undesired mental state. He warns the reader, though, that what he is about to read might sound insane.  He shows desire of regrets but these are simply replaced by his instincts that probably help decide on what to do.

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