Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 11th grade October 2001

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Fear By: Will In Guy de Maupassat's "The Necklace," and O. Henry's "The Gift of the Magi," fear motivates the main characters, and influences the events in each story. The stories convey powerful messages to us as we watch how each character copes with her fears.

In the beginning of "The Necklace" Mathilde is envious of the social class and wealth of others because she has never enjoyed either position or wealth. When Mathilde's husband receives an invitation to an evening reception, Mathilde is afraid that she will be forced to express her lack of social class, and is hesitant to go. But out of the goodness of he husband's heart he bought her an expensive dress for her to wear and suggested that she borrow jewelry from Mme Forestier. At the reception Mathilde was greatly admired, and felt part of the social class that she so desired to belong to.

Noticing that her coat that was brought from home clashed with the stylishness of her evening gown, she felt this and longed to escape, unseen by the other women who were draped in expensive furs. This causing her to rush out, not realizing that she had left the necklace at the reception. Now the Loisels were in tremendous fear of financial ruin and poverty. Not to mention of what Mme Forestier would do to them if she were to ever find out. A similar necklace would cost 36 thousand francs, 18 of which they had. They would have to borrow the rest. As for Mme Forestier she believed that the necklace's latch was broken and was being fixed. Later when the necklace paid off Mme Forestier was told the truth.

In the beginning of "The Gift of the Magi," Della is...