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The story “The Necklace” is about a young woman, Matilda Loisel who was born into a very poor family. Later she got married to a clerk who worked at the Board of Education. One day, they were invited to a grand party for which Matilda Loisel borrowed a necklace from Mme Forestier, her friend. The entire night, she danced enthusiastically and enjoyed the party. But when they reached home, they found out that one of the diamonds was missing from the necklace. So, in order to replace it, they bought a new one worth 36,000 francs. They worked day and night for ten years to repay the loan that they took to buy the diamond. One fine day, Matilda met Mme Forestier and confronted her about the loss of the diamond and they replaced it with a new one. Upon hearing this, Mme Forestier was shocked and told her that the necklace was not worth over 500 francs.
What kind of a person is Mme Loisel ? Why is she always unhappy ?
Mme Loisel is a pretty girl. She was born in a poor family. Her husband is a small clerk. But she thinks she was born to enjoy all the luxuries of life. The poverty of her house and clothes troubles her. So she remains always unhappy.
What kind of a person is her husband ?
Her husband is a poor clerk. But he always tries to keep his wife happy. He has to borrow 18,000 francs to replace the necklace. He has to suffer a lot because of his wife. But he never gets angry with her. It shows he is a loving husband.
What fresh problem now disturbs Mme Loisel ?
Mme Loisel gets a new dress for the ball, but even then she is sad and disturbed. She does not have any jewel to adorn herself.
How is the problem solved ?
Matilda has a rich friend. She goes to her. The friend at once agrees to lend her any jewel she likes. Matilda chooses a lovely diamond necklace to wear at the ball. Thus her problem is solved.
What do M. and Mme Loisel do when they find the necklace missing ?
How did the Loisels react when they realise that the Necklace had been lost ?
M. and Mme Loisel look in the folds of the dress, cloak and in the pockets. Loisel goes out to find it. He also goes to the police and to the cab offices. He puts an advertisement in the newspapers, offering a reward. But all efforts to find the necklace fail.
How does Loisel replace the lost necklace ?
Loisel has to pay 36,000 francs for the new necklace. He had with him only 18,000. He has to borrow the rest. He goes to moneylenders. He agrees to pay a high rate of interest to get the money.
The course of the Loisels’ life changed due to the necklace. Comment.
Loisel had to borrow money at very high rate of interest to replace the lost necklace. It changed the entire course of the Loisels’ life. They had to live a hard life of poverty. They changed their lodgings. They sent away the maid. Matilda had to do all the household work herself. She had to live like a poor woman. Loisel did overtime for some merchants. This continued for ten long years. At last they cleared all their debts. Matilda now looked an old woman of a poor family.
What was the cause of Matilda’s ruin ? How could she have avoided it ?
Matilda belonged to a poor family. But she always longed to have things of luxury. That was the real cause of her ruin. She should have known that one should cut one’s coat according to one’s cloth. Thus she could avoid her ruin.
What would have happened to Matilda if she had confessed to her friend that she had lost the necklace ?
Matilda would have been saved from ruin if she had confessed the loss. The lost necklace was worth only 500 francs. She could have easily bought another in its place. And perhaps, the rich friend might not have minded the loss altogether.
If you were caught in a situation like this, how would you have dealt with it ?
If I were in Matilda’s place, I would have gone to Mme Forestier to tell her about the loss of her necklace and to promise her that I would make up the loss anyhow. And that would have saved me from ruin.