What are the differences and similarities between Madame Loisel and Monsieur Loisel in "The Necklace?"

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literaturenerd eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The two main characters in "The Necklace" are Monsieur and Madame Loisel. These characters maintain some very poignant similarities and differences, the differences far outweighing the similarities.

Essentially, the only two similarities that the couple share is the fact that they are both to live within the constraints of being a family of clerks and they both strive for Mathilde's happiness.

Outside of that, the couple have many differences.

Mathilde is not happy with her circumstances. She believes that she should be living in a higher station (attending parties, spending lavishly, and admired by all). She is truly unhappy where she is.

M. Loisel, on the other hand, is happy with his circumstances. One can infer this based upon his comment made about dinner.

"Ah, the good soup! I don't know anything better than that."

As simple as soup is, M. Loisel is completely content (unlike his wife). She instead, seemed to detest the soup given she could only think of

dainty dinners, of shining silverware, of tapestry that peopled the walls with ancient personages and with strange birds flying in the midst of a fairy forest; and she thought of delicious dishes served on marvellous plates and of the whispered gallantries to which you listen with a sphinxlike smile while you are eating the pink meat of a trout or the wings of a quail.

M. Loisel is happy with getting his wife an invitation to an exclusive, and much sought after, party. Mathilde, on the other hand, is not happy with the invitation. Instead, she is upset by it. Her lack of proper clothes and jewelry force her to be saddened instead.


maher123 | Student

Madame and monsieur loisel have opposite perspectives of status. Madame Loisel is obsessed with glamour – with fancy, beautiful, expensive things, and the life that accompanies them. For Mathilde, being wealthy amounts to living in a fairy tale. Being middle class amounts to boredom. She wants the fairy tale: She suffered intensely, feeling herself born for every delicacy and every luxury she is literally never content she longed to be a member of high society and she wanted to live above her means and would do whatever it took to get there, Madame Loisel places material possessions above friendship and the love and faithfulness of her husband. Never in the story is there any indication that she shows gratitude for all the sacrifices of M. Loisel.

However, Monsieur Loisel is M. Loisel is a man who is content with what he has and appreciates the simple things in life M.Loisel is happy with their simple meals: he uncovered the soup tureen and declared with a delighted air, "Ah, the good soup! I don't know anything better than that." Monsieur Loisel doesn’t care for appearances; he suggests the idea of adorning his wife with simple flowers. He is willing to sacrifice everything to please his wife he manages to obtain an invitation to a formal ball.

Another difference between Madame and monsieur liosel have totally opposite characters. Madame Loisel seems vain, greedy, and shallow, fastidious she a never shows any sign of caring or appreciating for him. She always wants more.

. On the other hand monsieur loisel is thrifty, easygoing, simple, loving husband who goes to great lengths to please his wife he brings the invitation to the ball party to please her.

they have different attitudes toward eachother.

they both belong to the middle class society.