The Decameron

The Decameron

by

Giovanni Boccaccio

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Tedaldo degli Elisei Character Analysis

In Emilia’s third story (III, 7), Tedaldo degli Elisei loves Ermellina, but leaves Florence when she suddenly spurns him. Becoming a wealthy merchant isn’t enough to make him forget her, and he returns in disguise to check on her some years later, only to discover that her husband, Aldobrandino Palermi, has been accused of Tedaldo’s murder. He demonstrates the power of love and the day’s theme—perseverance—when time and distance aren’t enough to diminish his love, and when he works assiduously to save his lover’s husband from execution. In his disguise (as a friar and pilgrim), he delivers an important diatribe against clerical hypocrisy, contributing to The Decameron’s anticlerical satire.

Tedaldo degli Elisei Quotes in The Decameron

The The Decameron quotes below are all either spoken by Tedaldo degli Elisei or refer to Tedaldo degli Elisei. 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: Seventh Tale Quotes

Tedaldo began to reflect how fatally easy it was for people to cram their heads with totally erroneous notions. His thoughts turned first of all to his brothers, who had gone into mourning and buried some stranger in his own stead, after which they had been impelled by their false suspicions to accuse this innocent man and fabricate evidence so as to have him brought under sentence of death. This in turn led him to reflect upon the blind severity of the law and its administrators, who in order to convey the impression that they are zealously seeking the truth, often have recourse to cruelty and falsehood to be accepted as proven fact, hence demonstrating, for all their proud claim to be the ministers of God’s justice, that their true allegiance is to the devil and his iniquities.

Related Characters: Emilia (speaker), Tedaldo degli Elisei, Aldobrandino Palermi
Page Number: 239-240
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire The Decameron LitChart as a printable PDF.
The Decameron PDF

Tedaldo degli Elisei Character Timeline in The Decameron

The timeline below shows where the character Tedaldo degli Elisei appears in The Decameron. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Day 3: Seventh Tale
Love and Sex Theme Icon
Emilia, the next narrator, tells the story of Tedaldo degli Elisei, who has an affair with Ermellina, the wife of Aldobrandino Palermini. But one... (full context)
Men and Women Theme Icon
But when Tedaldo hears a song that he composed for Ermellina, he remembers his undaunted love for her... (full context)
Love and Sex Theme Icon
Tedaldo’s shock prevents him from sleeping that night, and he hears footsteps on the roof. Peeping... (full context)
Love and Sex Theme Icon
Faith vs. Religion Theme Icon
The next day, Tedaldo (still disguised as a pilgrim) presents himself to Ermellina, claiming to have been sent by... (full context)
Love and Sex Theme Icon
Faith vs. Religion Theme Icon
...would be sent to Hell unless she mended her ways. Frightened, she cut ties with Tedaldo, but she admits that she still loved him and was about to take him back... (full context)
Faith vs. Religion Theme Icon
Claiming to be a friar himself, Tedaldo then makes a very long speech outlining the hypocrisy and sinfulness of modern-day clergy, whose... (full context)
Love and Sex Theme Icon
Men and Women Theme Icon
Faith vs. Religion Theme Icon
And anyway, Tedaldo continues, even if adultery is a bad sin, isn’t theft worse? Having extramarital sex is... (full context)
Intelligence Theme Icon
Faith vs. Religion Theme Icon
Hurrying to Aldobrandino, Tedaldo promises to secure his release if he will pardon Tedaldo’s brothers for accusing him and... (full context)
Love and Sex Theme Icon
Men and Women Theme Icon
When Aldobrandino is released, he and Ermellina invite the “pilgrim” (Tedaldo) to stay with them. When Tedaldo hears that his brothers are being mocked, he decides... (full context)
Faith vs. Religion Theme Icon
Many people, including Tedaldo’s brothers, harbor a faint suspicion that he’s not really Tedaldo until they solve the mystery... (full context)
Day 3: Eighth Tale
Love and Sex Theme Icon
Moderation and Excess Theme Icon
Intelligence Theme Icon
Faith vs. Religion Theme Icon
...on the theme of a supposedly resurrected man, but her protagonist isn’t as clever as Tedaldo. In Tuscany, a Womanizing Abbot with a reputation for holiness becomes acquainted with Ferondo, a... (full context)