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Quote #10

It was then, however, that the Prince Prospero, maddening with rage and the shame of his own momentary cowardice, rushed hurriedly through the six chambers, while none followed him on account of a deadly terror that had seized upon all. He bore aloft a drawn dagger, and had approached, in rapid impetuosity, to within three or four feet of the retreating figure… (13)

Prospero's temper leads him to do just about the most foolish (and ironic) thing possible: he chases down and tries to kill Death. That captures the foolishness of trying to avoid death at its absurd extreme. It's no surprise what happens next…

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