What Is The Plot Of The Story, 'The Duchess And The Jeweller'?


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The Duchess and the Jeweller, written in 1938, is one of the short stories written by British modernist author, Virginia Woolf.

The story is basically a social satire, criticizing the desire of the common man for identity and prestige, and how he's willing to deceive and lie in order to achieve this.

What's The Plot of The Duchess And The Jeweller?
The story revolves around a jeweller, Oliver Bacon. He is poor by birth, but has grown rich through fraud and deception.

In his ongoing struggle to maintain social status, Oliver buys pearls from a duchess, whose daughter he wishes to marry.

The pearls cost Bacon £20,000, and later turn out to be fake. However, it doesn't matter, as it isn't actually the pearls that he's bought, its the duchess's daughter's hand in marriage.

What's The Story Saying?
Essentially, money isn't enough for the jeweller - he wants to acquire the esteem associated with being the husband of a duchess. This was true of many people in Britain around that time.

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