November 1, 2020
Here we go!
We begin our reading adventure with one of the most complicated stories in the Heptaméron, a tale told by Simontaut that involves infidelity, murder, witchcraft—and Marguerite de Navarre herself, the Duchess of Alençon in this story, who steps in at the end with an act of compassion that spares the life of the man named Saint-Aignan who has tried to bring about her own death. Simontaut says that he tells this story to avenge himself on a woman who has rejected his advances, presumably Parlamente, another one of our storytellers (who is also often identified with Marguerite de Navarre), although he also says that the suffering she inflicts upon him is “a Hell far more delightful to me than any Paradise that any other woman could offer.”
Oisille, the group’s spiritual leader, says she will have to come up with a good story to counter this one!