Please explain the meaning of the following quote from "The Necklace."She was one of those pretty and charming girls born as if by an accident of fate into a family of clerks. With no dowry, no...

Please explain the meaning of the following quote from "The Necklace."

She was one of those pretty and charming girls born as if by an accident of fate into a family of clerks. With no dowry, no prospects, no way of any kind of being met, understood, loved and married by a man both prosperous and famous she was finally married to a minor clerk in the Ministry of Education.

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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This quote comes at the very beginning of the story, and relates to the background of Mathilde Loisel before the beginning of the story. In this quote, Maupassant tells us the kind of person Mathilde was and how she ended up being married to her husband. Key to note is the way that her beauty stands in contrast to her social station. Being born "by an accident of fate" into a family of clerks denotes her humble origins, which is belied by her natural beauty and manners. However, in spite of her qualities, she has no chance of making a better marriage because she has "no dowry, no prospects" and no way of meeting and marrying a "prosperous and famous" man. Because of this, she is forced to put up with a marriage to her husband who occupies the same social station as she does.

This quote then sets the scene for the massive feeling of discontentment and even injustice felt by Mathilde Loisel and the way she is prone to constant daydreaming because of her feeling that she deserved more out of her life than the lot she has been given.

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