The Necklace Class 10 by Guy De Maupassant | Chapter 7 | Footprints Without Feet |
Summary of The Necklace
This chapter revolves around a beautiful woman Mathilde Loisel who feels despondent after getting married to a lowly clerk. She imagines of a luxurious lifestyle buying jewels and enjoying the company of well-off friends. But, on the contrary, she has a modest lifestyle which is full of nothing but regret. She has a rich friend namely Madame Forestier but she never likes to visit her for it makes her feel down and low in her company.
Once, her husband brings home an invitation of a formal party to be hosted soon by Ministry of Education where he works. He expects his wife to be super thrilled hearing about all that. On the contrary, she starts crying and complaining that she has nothing to wear in that party which makes her husband upset. Being a good husband, he asks her how much a good dress would cost. Having thought for a while, she replies that 400 francs would be sufficient for her to buy a suitable dress. Ultimately, he agrees to do so. Just before the day arrives, she starts complaining of not having the jewels. Being a modest man, her husband advises her to wear flowers but refused by her. Seeing the mood of his wife, he asks her to borrow something from one of her good friends Madam Forestier. Following her husband’s advice, she goes there and borrows a diamond necklace from her. She gets ready wearing a beautiful dress and a magnificent necklace laden with diamonds. Everyone notices and praises her for looking ravishing.This chapter revolves around a beautiful woman Mathilde Loisel who feels despondent after getting married to a lowly clerk. She imagines of a luxurious lifestyle buying jewels and enjoying the company of well-off friends. But, on the contrary, she has a modest lifestyle which is full of nothing but regret. She has a rich friend namely Madame Forestier but she never likes to visit her for it makes her feel down and low in her company.
When the party is over, her husband goes to hire a cab outside. Having waited for a while, they get a cab and come back to their home. At her home, she finds her diamond necklace missing that she had borrower from her friend. Her husband goes to the party place back retracing their steps but all in vain. He finds nothing except disappointment. On the other hand, he advises his wife to write to her friend stating that she has broken her necklace which will take some time to be mended. They, ceaselessly, look for that necklace from post to pillar but do not find. Finally, they decide to go to jewelers and buy the same one for her friend bearing all the cost and expenditure.
At one of the jeweler shops, they find the same one but its cost makes them swoon. The shopkeeper demands 40,000 francs but gets ready to give it to them for only 36,000 francs. The couple mortgages everything they have and somehow buy that necklace at such a high price. At the time of return, Madam Forestier gets annoyed with her for being so late in returning the necklace. Later, she has a glance at it and keeps it. Having returned it, Mathilde takes a sigh of relief and returns back to home. Then the days of penury begin for them. They have to switch their apartment to a smaller one dismissing all their servants. She takes up many job and even works throughout the day for paying all their debts. Ultimately, having struggled for almost ten years, they manage to pay all their debts but in return, she has to lose her beauty and every other thing she used to have.
One day, she comes across Madame Forestier after such a long time. She tries to interact with Madam Forestier but latter fails to identify her. Having introduced herself again, Madam Forestier finally gets to recognize her and exclaims at her pathetic condition. She states the reason of her being so poor and ugly. To her surprise, Madam Forestier tells her that the necklace, she had borrowed from her, was an artificial one not the real one and did not worth much. All this made Mathilde kind of mad in the end.
Textual Questions Answers of The Necklace
Question 1: What kind of a person is Mme Loisel — why is she always unhappy?
Answer:Mme Loisel was a woman who wanted to have more money so she could buy what she wanted. She knew that her family didn’t have enough money for this, and that made her unhappy and angry.
Question 2: What kind of a person is her husband?
Answer: Matilda’s husband Monsieur Loisel was a happy man. He was a little worker (clerk) in the office of the Board of Education. But he was happy to have his job. He got an invitation to go to a party for his wife, and he gave Matilda four hundred francs so she could buy something pretty for the party.
Read and Find Out (Page 41)
Question 1: What fresh problem now disturbs Mme Loisel?
Answer: Mme Loisel spent 400 francs on a dress. This made her think about jewellery, but she didn’t have any. Her husband suggested to wear flowers, but she refused because it would be embarrassing to be dressed shabbily among rich people.
Question 2: How is the problem solved?
Answer: Mme Loisel’s husband suggested that she wear some flowers as jewelry. But she didn’t like that idea. He remembers a friend of hers who had a lot of nice things and suggests to borrow from her friend. Matilda really liked the idea and went to her friend’s house the next day to get a diamond necklace. Her husband helped her by suggesting something that would work for what she wanted, so Matilda was happy.
Read and Find Out (Page 42)
Question 1: What do M. and Mme Loisel do next?
Answer: When the Loisels lost their necklace, they tried to find it everywhere. They looked for it on the street that they walked down when they got home, and in case someone found it, they offered a reward. Soon after, the husband asked his wife to write a letter to her friend Mme Forestier. In the letter, he said that the clasp on the necklace broke and they would return it once it was repaired. This gave them some more time to find the necklace. But all their efforts went in vain. Eventually they bought a new diamond necklace that cost as much as the lost one.
Question 2: How do they replace the necklace?
Answer: M. and Mme Loisel tried to find a new necklace for a long time. They kept looking but couldn’t find one they liked. Finally, they found one that was exactly the same as the lost necklace and bought it for thirty six thousand francs for the owner named Mme Forestier.
Think about it (Page 46)
Question 1: The course of the Loisels’ life changed due to the necklace. Comment.
Answer: The Loisels’ life changed because of the necklace. It took them ten years to pay back the loan that they had taken out to buy it. They changed their lodgings, sent away their maid and rented some rooms in an attic. Matilda did all the work in the kitchen, washed dirty linen, bargained with grocers and butchers to save every single cent so that they could survive. Her husband worked late into the night and took up odd jobs so that they could repay their debt. The couple led a sad life to repay the debt that they had for buying the expensive jewel.
Question 2: What was the cause of Matilda’s ruin? How could she have avoided it?
Answer: Matilda always wanted to have a lot of money and be rich. It caused her to become unhappy with her life. She could have avoided all of this by accepting what she had and being happy with it instead.
Question 3: What would have happened to Matilda if she had confessed to her friend that she had lost her necklace?
Answer: If Matilda had been honest with her friend and told her about the necklace, she could have avoided a lot of problems. If Matilda’s friend knew that the necklace was fake and only cost 500 francs, she would not be angry or upset that Matilda lost it. We know this because if Matilda’s friend had known the truth, then she never would have spent all of Matilda’s husband’s money to buy a replacement for the fake necklace. She could have saved herself and her husband from ten long years of suffering and misery had she told each and everything to her friend honestly.
Question 4: If you were caught in a situation like this, how would you have dealt with it?
Answer: If something bad had happened to me, I would have told the truth about it. This way if my friends lost their necklace, I would tell them what happened. This would help my friends find their necklace and then they could be happy again.
Talk about it (Page 46)
Question 1: The characters in this story speak in English. Do you think this is their language? What clues are there in the story about the language its characters must be speaking in?
Answer: The story tells about a couple in France. They lost a diamond. The people in the story speak English, but it is not their language. The writer was from France and wrote the story in French. There are many clues to show that the characters were from France because they used words like “monsieur” and “madame.” Besides, the shop was at Palais Royal and Champs Elysees. These are both places in France where French history is found.
Question 2: Honesty is the best policy.
Answer: Honesty is the best policy. We think that being proud and dishonest seem good at first, but they will lead you to a life of misery. Honesty can lead to hard times, but it will give you happiness in the end.
Question 3: We should be content with what life gives us.
Answer: Yes, we should be happy with what life gives us. Every person in this world is born into different conditions that they cannot control. Some people are born with money and fame, others are not. But no matter what you have, it’s important to learn to live within your means and be happy with what you have instead of always wanting more or wishing for something else. A person can try to improve his/her financial position by being honest. This will make him/her happy with how he/she manages his/her life.
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