The Decameron

The Decameron

by

Giovanni Boccaccio

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Gilette is the protagonist of Neifile’s third tale (III, 9). She is the only daughter of a renowned physician, and she grows up in the household of the Count of Roussillon, where she falls in love with her playmate, the count’s son Bertrand. When she uses her father’s medical knowledge to cure the French King, she asks to marry Bertrand in exchange. But when Bertrand repudiates his forced and bourgeois bride, she demonstrates her enduring love, noble character, generosity, and native intelligence by patiently working to fulfil his almost-impossible demands and win his love, thus showing that class has more to do with character than fortune. In her scheme she receives help from the Impoverished Noblewoman, whom she rewards generously.

Gilette Quotes in The Decameron

The The Decameron quotes below are all either spoken by Gilette or refer to Gilette. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Love and Sex Theme Icon
).
Day 3: Ninth Tale Quotes

“Sire,” said Bertrand, “you have the power to take away everything I possess, and hand me over to anyone you may choose, for I am merely your humble vassal. But I can assure you that I shall never rest content with such a match.”

“Of course you will,” said the King, “for she is beautiful, intelligent, and deeply in love with you. Hence we are confident that you will be much happier with her than you would ever have been with a lady of loftier birth.”

Related Characters: Bertrand (speaker), Gilette
Page Number: 267
Explanation and Analysis:
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The Decameron PDF

Gilette Character Timeline in The Decameron

The timeline below shows where the character Gilette appears in The Decameron. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Day 3: Ninth Tale
Class and Character Theme Icon
...a doctor called Gerard of Narbonne as a member of his household staff. Gerard’s daughter Gilette grows up alongside the Count’s son Bertrand. When the Count dies, his son goes to... (full context)
Love and Sex Theme Icon
Men and Women Theme Icon
Intelligence Theme Icon
Class and Character Theme Icon
Gilette’s love doesn’t diminish as she grows up, burning even hotter when she reaches a marriageable... (full context)
Men and Women Theme Icon
Intelligence Theme Icon
Class and Character Theme Icon
Gilette heals the king and asks for Bertrand as her husband. Bertrand is unwilling and indignant... (full context)
Intelligence Theme Icon
Class and Character Theme Icon
Compelled to marry Gilette, Bertrand refuses to consummate the marriage except in Roussillon, and he avoids returning by offering... (full context)
Intelligence Theme Icon
Class and Character Theme Icon
Although she is initially dismayed, Gilette sets about winning her husband back. Reminding his subjects of her hard work on their... (full context)
Love and Sex Theme Icon
Intelligence Theme Icon
Class and Character Theme Icon
In Florence, Gilette soon catches sight of Bertrand. Her innkeeper explains that he is an affable gentleman who... (full context)
Love and Sex Theme Icon
Men and Women Theme Icon
Gilette wants the Impoverished Noblewoman to send a messenger to Bertrand saying that her daughter is... (full context)
Love and Sex Theme Icon
Intelligence Theme Icon
Class and Character Theme Icon
Bertrand falls for their plan, and contentedly sleeps with Gilette—thinking her to be the Impoverished Noblewoman’s daughter—many times. Once she realizes that she’s become pregnant,... (full context)
Intelligence Theme Icon
After their babies are born, Gilette secretly returns to Roussillon just in time for a great feast. Wearing the ring and... (full context)