Setting: It was Paris, France. Mathilde wasn't the richest, but she wasn't poor by any means. Her husband was a little clerk at the Ministry of Public Instruction.
I can sell you this for 40,000 francs.
Okay, we will take it, but can you hold it for 3 days.
George came home with a ticket to the palace of Ministry Monday, evening January 18th. Mathilde claims she has nothing to wear and her husband gives her 400 francs for a dress.
That will be 19 fracs.
Mathilde buys her dress and it is beautiful. She feels it needs a beautiful necklace to go with. So Loisel asks her friend Mme. Forestier to borrow a necklace.
The ball had just ended and Mathilde was looking for a cab with her husband. They found a cab and it dropped them off at their door in Run des Martyrs. Mathilde then realized she had lost the necklace. George went to look to find it but couldn't. They then looked all over then and finally found one to replace but, it was 40,000 francs.
They bought the necklace and gave it to Mme. Forestier. They were then in debt for the next ten years, doing everything they could to save money and get things for cheap.
How about 10 francs?
10 years later Mathilde was finally out of debt. One day while walking around town she saw Mme. Forestier and decided to tell her the truth. At first Mme. Forestier didn't even recognize her. When she finally recognized Mathilde and she told her what happened, it turns out the necklace was worth 500 francs.