Essay about Comparison of Maupassant's Short Stories

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Comparison of Maupassant's Short Stories

'A Vendetta' is a short story written by Guy de Maupassant pre 1914. It is set in Bonifacio, Corsica and is about Antoine Saverini who was savagely murdered and his mother who swore over his dead body that she would seek revenge.

After an argument, Nicolas Ravolati murders Antoine Saverini by stabbing him in the back. When his mother sees her son's dead body for the first time, brought to her house by passers by, she sheds no tears however, she swears she will avenge him. The old woman knows that she is too old and weak to avenge his death herself. One night while Frisky the dog howled she was suddenly inspired. For three months she trained Frisky to
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He crams 'A Vendetta' full of descriptive writing giving the reader a better understanding of where the story is set and the characters that are in the story. The first two paragraphs only describe Bonifacio, where 'A Vendetta' is set. Maupassant gives a very negative image to Bonifacio, describing its 'ramparts' and its 'bristling reefs'. It is a 'dangerous channel into which few ships venture'. By using dramatic imagery he manages to give the impression that Bonifacio is a very dangerous and unwelcoming place.

I like Maupassant's use of similes especially 'They look like the nests of wild birds clinging to the rock looking down on this dangerous channel'. This helps the reader to visualise the pebble dashed cottages literally clinging onto the mountainside. Throughout the story Maupassant uses imagery in a very dramatic way. Maupassant makes clever use of personification, 'The wind harasses the sea remorselessly' giving the impression of a turbulent storm, it is as if the sea has got a life of its own. Maupassant's use of the word 'harasses' is very powerful and it conjures up an atmosphere of storms, thunder and lightning, again portraying that Bonifacio is a dangerous place. He describes Saverini's house as 'clinging to the very edge of the cliff' once again using personification to describe Bonifacio.

The two main characters in 'A Vendetta' are the old woman and Frisky.