Story:The Cripple by Guy Da Maupassant

The Cripple by Guy Da Maupassant

It’s a short story by French author “Guy Da Maupassant” highlighting the encounter of two people on a train. The main protagonist of the story is a man who has lost his feet in war. Here is The Cripple by Guy Da Maupassant Summary.


In this blog, we’ll share these terms:

  • Author
  • Characters
  • Summary
  • Analysis
  • Theme
  • Conclusion


The Cripple is a short story by Guy Da Maupassant. He was a French writer who had inspired many readers. Further, Guy Da Maupassant is also called as the father of modern stories because of his naturalist style. Some of Guy Da Maupassant’s short stories are:


Here are the characters from the story “The Cripple”.

Henri Bonclair

He’s the narrator who narrates his meeting with the Cripple man on a train.

Lieutenant/Captain Revaliere

He was the Cripple man who had lost his feet in the war. The story revolves around his life.


He was Revaliere servant who helped him in unloading his packages.

Mademoiselle de Mandel

She was the girl whom Revaliere wanted to marry.

Monsieur de Fleurel

He was Mademoiselle de Mandel’s husband. They both had one girl and two sons from marriage.

The Cripple Summary By Guy Da Maupassant

The story starts on a train where the narrator discusses an event of his meeting a man on the train. The man who entered the train was cripple. The narrator thought that he knew him as they met somewhere before. The cripple guy had a servant “Laurant” who helped him with his items. The items or package include a gun, doll, drum, candy, and pate de foie gras”.The narrator said to him that he’s Henri Bonclair and works as a magistrate. The cripple man recognized him and said to him that he was Lieutenant Revaliere. He said he had met the narrator 12 years before the war. He told him he had received cannon ball on the leg and lost his leg.

The narrator tried to engage in talk further. He asked him about the girl”Mademoiselle de Mandel “who was his lover. They both wanted to marry each other. The narrator asked about that girl and said “Are you together”.The Cripple man told him that he didn’t marry her. The main reason was he didn’t want her to ruin her life by staying with a man who had lost his feet. He didn’t want her to be irritated by the sound of a wooden leg. The girl that why married a man “Madame de Fleurel“.The man had a good relationship with this family although he didn’t marry his love. He said that Madame de Fleurel had two sons and a girl and he’s getting toys for them. The train was going to Saint Germain and suddenly a woman came up at the destination of the cripple man. She was Fleurel. She had kids with her. They all loved the cripple man.

Analysis: The Cripple by Guy Da Maupassant

The main reason for not marrying the girl was that Revaliere didn’t want her to miss the golden days of her life. He wants her to enjoy life with zeal and zest. She loved him but he cared for her as she’ll face difficulties in managing a cripple guy.

The character of the servant was great. He offered help to his master every time. In the story, you’ll read one term “Monsieur“. What’s the meaning of monsieur in English? It’s a French word that is used for giving respect. It’s also called “sir”.


The main theme of the cripple by Guy Da Maupassant is the sad life of a young man. He lost his feet as well as love. He didn’t marry her as he wanted her to stay away from sadness.

  • Further, the man looked older than he was. It defines the impact of sadness on humans.

Conclusion:The Cripple by Guy Da Maupassant

Overall, it was an elegant short story. The Cripple by Guy Da Maupassant explores the encounter of two men on a train. The one who was cripple shares his life events with the narrator. The story is set in France in 1882.


What is the meaning of pâté de foie gras?

It’s a paste that is made up of duck liver. Further, it includes herbs, alcohol, and some other ingredients. The meaning of “pâté de foie gras” is “fat liver”.

Why the cripple man didn’t marry Mademoiselle de Mandel?

The main reason for not marrying her was to save her from hardships.


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