A Simple Heart

by

Gustave Flaubert

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Corpus Christi Term Analysis

Corpus Christi (“Body of Christ” in Latin) is a traditional religious holiday on the Catholic liturgical calendar. It typically occurs in June and celebrates the Eucharist, also known as communion (the sacrament that some Christian denominations—like Catholicism—believe is composed of the literal body and blood of Jesus Christ). In “A Simple Heart,” Corpus Christi is Félicité’s favorite day of the year, providing her with rare joy and energy during the final portion of her life. Corpus Christi is notable in the story not only because it is ultimately the day that Félicité passes away, but also because its religious significance aligns with the Christian underpinnings of the narrative and its themes. Though Félicité is never fully compensated for her work ethic, morality, or kindness during her difficult life, Flaubert suggests that she receives the ultimate reward when she dies on this holy day and is greeted at the gates of heaven by an image of her beloved parrot Loulou.

Corpus Christi Quotes in A Simple Heart

The A Simple Heart quotes below are all either spoken by Corpus Christi or refer to Corpus Christi. For each quote, you can also see the other terms and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Faith and Virtue  Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Penguin edition of A Simple Heart published in 2005.
Chapter 5 Quotes

A cascade of bright colours fell from the top of the altar down to the carpet spread out on the cobblestones beneath it. In amongst the flowers could be seen a number of other treasured ornaments: a silver-gilt sugar-bowl decorated with a ring of violets, a set of pendants cut from Alençon gemstones glittering on a little carpet of moss, two Chinese screens with painted landscapes. Loulou lay hidden beneath some roses and all that could be seen of him was the spot of blue on the top of his head, like a disc of lapis lazuli.

Related Characters: Félicité Barette
Related Symbols: Loulou the Parrot
Page Number: 40
Explanation and Analysis:
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