Tobermory Irony

Mr. Appin's death (Situational Irony)

It is ironic that Mr. Appin's very next subject kills him while he is trying to teach it the human language. Elephants were alleged to be better pupils than house cats because they posed less of a threat of exposing human scandals. Ironically, the elephant Mr. Appin works with is capable of even greater harm than exposing scandals and ultimately kills him.

Lady Blemley's Letter (Situational Irony)

It is ironic that Lady Blemley writes to the rectory complaining about the death of her beloved pet cat Tobermory. This is ironic because Lady Blemley plotted to kill Tobermory once she found out he was capable of gossiping about her and the other guests. When Tobermory dies instead in a fight with the tomcat from the rectory, Lady Blemley feigns distress and pens a "nasty letter" blaming the rectory for Tobermory's death (97).

Reactions to Tobermory (Dramatic Irony)

At first the party guests are enthralled by Tobermory's ability to talk. Mr. Appin is incredibly proud to present his first successful subject. Ironically, the party guests end up plotting Tobermory's death when they discover how his ability to speak threatens their reputations.

False Friends (Dramatic Irony)

It is ironic that Lady Blemley invites people she dislikes and does not respect to her home. It is also ironic that many people attend who do not care for the Lady Blemley. More generally, the upper class pretends to be polite and mannerly when really they have some incredibly impolite things they'd like to (and do) say when others aren't listening.