The Decameron

The Decameron

by

Giovanni Boccaccio

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on The Decameron can help.

Melissus Character Analysis

In Emilia’s ninth tale (IX, 9), Melissus is a nobleman who spends money trying—unsuccessfully—to get people to like him. He befriends Joseph on the road to Jerusalem to seek Solomon’s wisdom. He illustrates the truism that to be loved, one must love others—a lesson that another rich young man, Mithridanes, must also learn later in The Decameron (X, 3).
Get the entire The Decameron LitChart as a printable PDF.
The Decameron PDF

Melissus Character Timeline in The Decameron

The timeline below shows where the character Melissus appears in The Decameron. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Day 9: Ninth Tale
Men and Women Theme Icon
In Solomon’s day, two people seeking his wisdom meet on the road to Jerusalem. Melissus, a rich nobleman who entertains others lavishly but has no friends, wants to know what... (full context)
Men and Women Theme Icon
...to go forward. The driver begins to beat it “quite unmercifully,” and when Joseph and Melissus ask why he can’t lead it gently, he retorts “I know my mule…Just you leave... (full context)
Men and Women Theme Icon
Joseph invites Melissus to stay with him for a few days on his way home, and they get... (full context)
Men and Women Theme Icon
...morning, when Joseph’s Wife asks what Joseph would like for breakfast, she follows his and Melissus’s instructions exactly. Now that they understand it, the men praise Solomon’s wise advice. Once Melissus... (full context)