The Necklace Questions and Answers
by Guy de Maupassant

The Necklace book cover
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What are some literary devices used in "The Necklace"?

Literary devices include irony, with the opening description of Mme. Loisel as born "as if by an error of fate." She is “drunk on pleasure,” which is a metaphor. We are in suspense to learn if her husband finds the lost necklace. The cost to replace it is the alliterative "dreadful debt.” Mme. Loisel flashes back to "that evening at the ball so long ago," and the conclusion is a plot twist.

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Examples of literary devices used in the story include suspense, irony, alliteration, metaphor, flashback, and plot twist.

Irony: The story opens with a description of Mme. Loisel:

She was one of those pretty and charming girls born, as if by an error of fate, into a family of clerks.

To say her social rank occurred “as if by an error of fate” is irony because the only one who really feels that way is Mme. Loisel herself. Her husband is perfectly content with their status and lifestyle.

Metaphor: When Mme. Loisel is at the ball wearing her friend’s “diamond” necklace and looking beautiful, de Maupassant describes her as “drunk on pleasure.” This is a metaphor that compares her happiness to being drunk, even though the reader understands that she cannot be drunk from the thrill and fun that she is having at the ball.

Suspense: Another literary device is suspense. After she realizes that she has lost the necklace and tells her husband, Monsieur Loisel says that he will go out to...

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