The Necklace (Maupassant)

How would you feel if you lost a diamond necklace that you borrowed? We don't know your life, but we'd feel pretty crappy about it. In "The Necklace," Matilde borrows a necklace to look rich for a ball—and loses it. She and her husband spiral into debt from the cost of replacing it, only to realize...well, watch the video to find out the rest.

AuthorMaupassant - Guy de Maupassant
FormShort Story
LanguageEnglish Language
LiteratureWorld Literature
ThemesPride
Suffering
Wealth
Women and Femininity

Transcript

00:23

her own. . .

00:24

. . .which includes just about everybody on the planet.

00:30

Poor Mathilde can’t catch a break. When she finally does get the chance to hang

00:34

out with the rich and famous. . .

00:37

. . .she loses a borrowed necklace. . .

00:39

. . .which makes her life more miserable than ever.

00:43

It sure looks like our author is trying to tell us something. . .

00:46

. . .but what?

00:47

What’s the moral of The Necklace? Is he suggesting that we should be happy with

00:52

what we’ve got? Mathilde didn’t appreciate what she had.

00:57

. .

00:57

. . .and that led to a whole bunch of trouble.

01:00

Is DeMaupassant<<not totally sure on pronunciation – does Deb know?>> saying we should stop

01:03

wanting what we don’t have?

01:07

Or is he just encouraging us to be ourselves? If Mathilde had just slapped on a dress from

01:13

her closet. . .

01:13

. . .and skipped the fancy jewelry. . .

01:16

. . .well, we would have had a different story. Another possible moral to the story. . .

01:20

. . .could be the importance of telling the truth.

01:23

If Mathilde had just told Madame Forestier she had lost the necklace. . .

01:29

. . .she might have lost a friend. . .

01:31

. . .but could have kept her maid. . .

01:33

. . .and a few francs in the bank. So, what do you think is the moral of The

01:37

Necklace? Is it:

01:39

Be happy with what you’ve got. . .

01:41

Don’t try to be anyone but yourself. . .

01:43

or… Tell the truth, even when it’s really, really hard?

01:48

Shmoop amongst yourselves.