”The Diamond Necklace” by Guy de Maupassant portrays the complexities and consequences of keeping up appearances in the 19th century. Mathilde is a young and beautiful woman, struggling with the ordinary circumstances of her life and marriage. When she is invited to a fancy ball with her husband, she borrows a diamond necklace from a friend. To her horror, she finds the necklace to be gone by the end of the night. The couple must now find a way to quickly replace the necklace, but the cost turns out to be terribly high. The story has inspired film adaptations, such as the silent film The Necklace (1909).
Guy de Maupassant (1850-1893) was a prolific French writer considered a pioneer in modern short story writing. Maupassant was a protégé of French writer Gustave Flaubert and is known for novels such as A Woman's Life and short stories including ”The Horla” and ”The Dumpling.” Maupassant's stories fall into the Naturalist movement, often depicting social entanglements and complex human fates. They have inspired countless film adaptations including the French-Belgian drama called A Woman's Life (2016).