Discussion Questions 9 — De France; Decameron


  1. The Tenth Story of the Tenth Day: Why is Griselda being tested?

Griselda is tested by her husband Gualtieri for patience. Before he took her as he wife he asked, Griselda and father the a few questions all of which she answered yes too. But Gualtieri felt the need to put Griselda to the test. When Gualtieri took away her daughter from her all she asked was that she not be fed to the beasts. Griselda bore a son that Gualtieri  also chose to take away from her. But both times Griselda held her composure and remained patient. To top it all off Gualtieri wanted a divorce. Griselda was forced to endure situations that many women would not be able to handle (I know I couldn’t have). But she remained patient and at the end was rewarded for her patience.

  1. Compare the frame tales in the Decameron, and The Thousand and One Nights. In each case, what is the reason for telling stories? Do the stories carry out the purpose for which they are intended? How important is the relationship between the tale and the teller?

Between the tales of the Decameron and The Thousand and One Nights, the stories told come across to be pretty extreme. The stories seem to both convey that ultimately the men rule over the women, and women are to do as there told. For instance, The Thousand and One Nights, since the Kings women cheated on him with a chef, he had to gain back control and go about killing women after he slept with them. There was nothing the women could do (except out smart him and tell him intriguing stories). In comparison to the King Gulatieri, he took his daughter and son away from Griselda and then faked going to the Pope for a divorce, all to test Griselda. These events seem pretty extreme, and ultimately the King rules and there’s nothing anybody else can do about it. The reason for telling the stories could be to show perspective of being someone watching all the events happen when. The stories do carry out getting another perspective across of that time in age to just reading it out of a history textbook. The relationship is important for the teller and the tale. For the teller uses to the tale to get the perspective out to the readers and they do so by telling a story.

  1. In Laustic, what does the nightingale symbolize? Explain your answer.

The nightingale is a symbol of love. For the Kings Wife longs for a love that can be free and of her choosing. An arranged marriage is not what she longed for. Especially since the King is a jerk and cares little for his wife’s happiness. He kills the nightingale so his wife will quit getting out of bed at night. He chooses to be resentful and carry it around with him.

4 thoughts on “Discussion Questions 9 — De France; Decameron

  1. Haley

    I agree with your personal opinion that you couldn’t have handled what Griselda had done to her either. There is no way that that should have been an acceptable thing to do even back in that time period. But she was definitely rewarded pretty well by having so much given and restored to her after all those tests. I agree as well that the nightingale is a symbol of love. I think that that symbol is meant to show the love between the wife and the neighbor though. Because when she got caught going to speak with the neighbor, whom she truly loved, is when she lied and said it was because of the nightingale.

  2. jtodd

    I think that the nightingale symbolizes love but also her dreams. I think she really wanted to be free from her controlling husband and live like the nightingale. But her husband killed the nightingale and her dreams.

  3. kjs93

    I appreciate that you pointed out Griselda’s only request for her daughter is that she not be fed to the beasts of the forest. She is so willing to accept her husband’s judgments that it is shocking. I wonder what her true motivations for doing so are.

  4. swhoke

    I like how you pointed out the extremeness of the stories being told. All of them seem to bring forth all of the most extreme actions and reactions people could possibly or impossibly have.

Comments are closed.