"The Necklace": Mathilde Loisel

Essay by askas1High School, 12th gradeA-, May 2007

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In the story “The Necklace”, the author Guy De Maupassant tells an intriguing story. The story focuses around the painful life of a beautiful woman, Mathilde Loisel. Mathilde Loisel is an arrogant and greedy woman who is never content with anything in her life. Her traits are shown through her unhappy manner towards her middle class life. Her arrogant and selfish ways eventually forces her to learn a painful and expensive lesson late in her life.

Mathilde Loisel is a round character whose ego is mainly revealed in her bitterness of her surroundings. Mathilde gradually becomes depressed at her ordinary and uneventful life spent with her husband while dreaming of delicacies and luxuries. She looks down at her “average Joe” husband who is satisfied eating “pot-au-feu” (a stew of beef and vegetables) for dinner. On the other hand, she goes through sorrow because she isn’t enjoying lobsters carried to her by a waiter on a silver platter every night.

Mathilde longs for“vast drawing rooms hung with antique skills, exquisite pieces of furniture supporting priceless ornaments, and small, charming, perfumed rooms, created just for little parties of intimate friends, men who were famous and sought after, whose homage roused every other woman’s envious longings.” (pg 696)However, she has none of these. In fact, she has no fine clothes, no jewels, nothing. This is an interesting element of her character and her opportunity to enjoy that lifestyle would eventually arrive. When her husband invites her to a dinner party, ironically, Mathilde rejects the offer for not possessing a quality dress. Mathilde’s selfish nature shows in the way she treats her husband. She treats him as a slave who only exists to be bossed around by her and to be blamed for all the unfortunate events that has gone wrong for her. Mathilde...