The Decameron, Volume II eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 478 pages of information about The Decameron, Volume II.
from his comrade that it was given by way of price, the lady made answer:—­“That will I gladly; but I must first see whether the amount is right;” whereupon she told the florins out upon a table, and when she found that the two hundred were there, she put them away in high glee, and turning to Gulfardo, took him into her chamber, where, not on that night only but on many another night, while her husband was away, he had of her all that he craved.  On Guasparruolo’s return Gulfardo presently paid him a visit, having first made sure that the lady would be with him, and so in her presence:—­“Guasparruolo,” quoth he, “I had after all no occasion for the money, to wit, the two hundred florins of gold that thou didst lend me the other day, being unable to carry through the transaction for which I borrowed them, and so I took an early opportunity of bringing them to thy wife, and gave them to her:  thou wilt therefore cancel the account.”  Whereupon Guasparruolo turned to the lady, and asked her if she had had them.  She, not daring to deny the fact in presence of the witness, answered:—­“Why, yes, I had them, and quite forgot to tell thee.”  “Good,” quoth then Guasparruolo, “we are quits, Gulfardo; make thy mind easy; I will see that thy account is set right.”  Gulfardo then withdrew, leaving the flouted lady to hand over her ill-gotten gains to her husband; and so the astute lover had his pleasure of his greedy mistress for nothing.

(1) Cf.  Sixth Day, Novel VII.


—­ The priest of Varlungo lies with Monna Belcolore:  he leaves with her his cloak by way of pledge, and receives from her a mortar.  He returns the mortar, and demands of her the cloak that he had left in pledge, which the good lady returns him with a gibe. —­

Ladies and men alike commended Gulfardo for the check that he gave to the greed of the Milanese lady; but before they had done, the queen turned to Pamfilo, and with a smile bade him follow suit:  wherefore thus Pamfilo began:—­Fair my ladies, it occurs to me to tell you a short story, which reflects no credit on those by whom we are continually wronged without being able to retaliate, to wit, the priests, who have instituted a crusade against our wives, and deem that, when they have made conquest of one of them, they have done a work every whit as worthy of recompense by remission of sin and punishment as if they had brought the Soldan in chains to Avignon:  in which respect ’tis not possible for the hapless laity to be even with them:  howbeit they are as hot to make reprisals on the priests’ mothers, sisters, mistresses, and daughters as the priests to attack their wives.  Wherefore I am minded to give you, as I may do in few words, the history of a rustic amour, the conclusion whereof was not a little laughable, nor barren of moral, for you may also gather therefrom, that ’tis not always well to believe everything that a priest says.

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The Decameron, Volume II from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.