The Abbot in White is an English princess disguised as a man in Pampinea’s second tale (II, 3). She travels in disguise for her protection (demonstrating female vulnerability) because she plans to run away from her father to avoid a forced marriage (demonstrating the secondary status of women in a patriarchal medieval society). When she meets Alessandro, she falls in love with him and marries him secretly, thus demonstrating her own virtue and avoiding any charges of excessive or uncontrollable female sexuality. In elevating Alessandro’s social position, she is an agent of fortune, and she is also its beneficiary when she gets a young and handsome husband instead of an old man.
Abbot in White Character Timeline in The Decameron
The timeline below shows where the character Abbot in White appears in The Decameron. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Day 2: Third Tale