The Decameron | Study Guide

Giovanni Boccaccio

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The Decameron | Character Analysis



Queen in First Day, Pampinea is the eldest of the seven ladies of the brigata that journey out of the city to the countryside to escape the plague. It is her idea to leave the city, and her idea to amuse themselves with stories. She is level-headed, temperate in her behavior and manner, and seems the most mature of the group. She says she has often been in love.


Queen in Fifth Day, Fiammetta has a generous nature and is anxious to be in love, although she fears the pain of heartbreak. It is possible she was modeled after Boccaccio's real-life Fiammetta whom he fell in love with when he was a young man.


Queen in Ninth Day, Emilia is a shy, beautiful young woman who has never been in love before. She is self-confident and enjoys singing and dancing.


King in Fourth Day, Filostrato suffers betrayal and disappointment in love, possibly with one of the young women in the brigata. Because of his disappointments, he is fairly unpleasant to be around, and chooses stories with unhappy endings as his theme.


Queen in Second Day, Filomena is the one to advise caution when following Pampinea's idea to leave the city, and suggests they take a guide to keep the company from becoming quarrelsome. She is discerning and discreet.


King in Seventh Day, Dioneo is the wittiest and most self-confident of the three young men. His stories almost always have sexual content and bawdy humor. He tells the final story of each day, and only loosely subscribes to the themes of the day.


Queen in Third Day, Neifile is 18 and inexperienced. She is in love with one of the three men in the brigata. She suggests observing the religious days, and takes the young women of the brigata to the Valley of the Ladies. She seems wise for her years.

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