Updated date:

Summary of "The Luncheon" by Somerset Maugham

Summary of 'The Luncheon'

The writer of 'The Luncheon' William Somerset Maugham, in this short story,relates about a lady who is an admirer of his stories. She wins the author's favour and expresses her wish to meet him at a high class restaurant.William exposes the false motives of modest eating habits, of the middle classes with a touch of humour.

Twenty years ago the author was living in Paris, when he had met a lady, who is an admirer of his stories. She had met him at a play and relates to him the incident during the interval which had occurred at that time. She had read a book written by him, and had written a letter to him about her views. Another letter was posted, stating about her visit to Paris and her desire to have a little luncheon at the Foyots, a restaurant where French senators eat. William was not a rich man and had never even thought of visiting that restaurant, nor did he possess the art of refusing her request.

Estimating the cost of a luncheon, which should not cost more than fifteen Francs,he decided to cut down coffee from his menu, so that he could have enough for himself for the next two weeks. His meeting was fixed on Thursday, at half past twelve, through correspondence.The lady was in her Forties, talkative, and not attractive. She had ordered for Salmon,and Caviare, while the Salmon was being prepared.William had ordered for the cheapest dish mutton- chops.

After the meal, she had ordered for white champagne. She kept enjoying the meal, and chatting about art, literature, and music, while William kept wondering about the bill.The bill of fare was soaring above that which he had anticipated.When the waiter had come with the bill she waived him aside with an air of gesture and ordered for Asparagus, the horribly expensive dish.William's heart sank, his mouth watered, and yet he had to quell his emotions.Adding to worsen the situation, she ordered for ice-cream and then coffee, all the same announcing that 'she never ate anything for luncheon - just a bite' Thoughts kept reeling through William's mind about how he was going to pay the exorbitant bill or how could he feign an act of his pocket having been picked.

To his utter dismay,the head waiter walked up to the table with a large basket full of huge Peaches.She picked up one protesting that her meal was just a snack, and that she could certainly enjoy the Peach.

The bill was finally paid, and William found himself with just a few Francs for the tips, and not a penny left in his pocket for the whole month. William believes, that he had had his revenge for then, when the Twenty years had passed by, he met her weighing One Hundred and Thirty -Six Kilograms.

Some questions answered:
1. How do you think there was a revenge? William Somerset is exposing the false motives of modest eating habits. The lady, only an admirer of the author does not even consider the rising bill that the author would have to pay rather giving in to her greed. He finds twenty years later that the lady had to pay for her greediness, then that she weighed One Hundred and Thirty -Six Kilograms, which Somerset refers to 'the revenge'.

2.Why had the writer never thought of eating at Foyot's restaurant? At the Foyot's restaurant the most expensive dishes are served as told in the Notes from London Daily Telegraph 18 August 1894 p6. William was a very rich man.
3. "I never eat anything for Luncheon"Explain how the woman contradicted this way in the way she behaved at the luncheon. Why did this upset the writer?At every sarcastic statement, the woman did exactly the opposite and the writer's bill kept rising he was at his wits end how he would be able to pay his bill since he knew he didn't have enough to pay the bill and just kept hoping that he would be able to pay the bill without any embarrassment.

4. What is the irony of the story?

Her remarks were sarcastic: "I never eat more than one thing for luncheon" "I'm not in the least hungry", yet she picked up a huge peach, she remarked her luncheon was just a snack " I never eat anything for luncheon", I'm not in the least hungry, "I never want more"," I couldn't possibly eat anything more."

This depicts the irony of the story.


.

Character of a Happy Life

  • Character of a Happy Life
    Summary of 'Character of a Happy Life' The poet Sir Henry Wotton illustrates the character of a happy life: The blessedness of a man,who is not a servant to another man's will. His honest thought is an armour that shields himself,and the truth...

Comments

kunal kumar from aravali institute of techinical studies...... on January 28, 2020:

nice story

Umesh Chandra Bhatt from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India on February 15, 2019:

Short stories are a good pass time for small durations and they are a great mind relaxing things also.

Good reviews.

Priya D on March 15, 2018:

very nice story I like so much

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on March 10, 2018:

Daksh, the author of this story. 'The Luncheon' is William Somerset Maugham. In this short story, he relates about a lady who is an admirer of his stories.

So there is no 'Man'. He is the author- William Somerset Maugham; and the lady is one of his fans, the name is not mentioned.

Daksh on March 06, 2018:

What is the name of 'Man' and 'Woman' in the story?

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on January 13, 2018:

"I never eat anything for luncheon. Just a bite, I never want more than that..."

The irony in this statement is marked with ridicule and is contrary to her appetite: although she claims that she scarcely eats anything for lunch yet she continues to dine until she had left her host penniless.

Lauren Taylor on January 13, 2018:

Please can you tell me the irony of the statement "I never eat anything for lunch"

Rakib Dewan on January 02, 2018:

Nice I like this story very well And I would like to say something about this story that great man of the world William samerset Maugham I salute you, also this story is a very funny, thanks dear writer......

Md shad Ahmad on October 03, 2017:

Nice I like this story very well n I would like to say something about this story that great man of the world William samerset Maugham I salute you

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on September 09, 2017:

Wiliam Somereset Maugham, portrays the profound nature of a gentleman, and the consequences of unlimited passion for food. It awakens us to be considerate and self-controlled, which definitely pays off.

Dhriti on September 08, 2017:

Can I get the central idea of the luncheon

farahnaaz from hyderabad on June 30, 2017:

Hey i remembered i studied this lesson luncheon by somerset maugham when i was in school. And to your surprise it was my favorite and it even came in my exam and i scored good marks on this answer. You made me nostalgic thank you for such wonderful post.

Princess on November 23, 2016:

It is a funny story and I liked it!!!!!!!!!!!

Meneer Machethe on October 25, 2016:

I hope my learners from Lethaba Sec will obtain good marks if the examiner decide to bring along this story during the next coming exam, since i taught them everything about it, All the best...

machwebeni sboh Ntozakhe on September 08, 2016:

i always enjoy reading this book i have learned alot to it

Aditya on June 08, 2016:

Nice story helped me lot in my project

rjbatty from Irvine on June 05, 2016:

I haven't read this story but will have to seek it out. Thanks for the summary. It reminds me of a couple times where I found myself in a similar predicament.

parneet on April 21, 2016:

it was really an amazing story that describes the feelings of a poor man who was not a rich man

Ridoy on October 11, 2015:

Really nice story. I like it so much :)

umang shekhar on October 03, 2015:

it was crazy but also very nice ,i loved it very much

olga khumlo on September 05, 2015:

Thank you children. I'm so glad you are all blessed. May God continue to bless you all and keep you in His paths.

mahfuza rahman on September 02, 2015:

I always enjoy it.

Kgomotso Sekamoeng on September 01, 2015:

It is the story that I understand the most than others.I really like this one.

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on August 21, 2015:

Bonni Kindly let me know which story dear.

bonni on August 19, 2015:

Can I gt help plz 4 doc story

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on August 11, 2015:

Dear Mamelato, Mooketsi, Rahlaga and all other folks, I'm so glad it has been helpful to you and others.God bless you all and help you to always excel in your careers for His glory. Amen.

Mamelato sephiri on August 10, 2015:

Lyk a story as it is straight & foward.....thnx alot.

Mooketsi on July 22, 2015:

Thank you man.... great

rahlaga granny on June 24, 2015:

This story is very interesting i always read it almost every day

Sebotsa mosiuwa sam on June 08, 2015:

Wow wat book tht touht me abt opportunist woman i've leand to say no!!!!!!!!!!

nelly on May 31, 2015:

I love this story....the luncheon Woooow

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on May 22, 2015:

Dear Abhirup, could you please make an attempt to write the character sketches and send them to the email gemsgleanings@gmail.com I will make the corrections and send it back to you.

God bless you all children, I'll be praying for each one of you.

Qawula Kamva on May 21, 2015:

The story is so amazing,but I learnt something

new on how to have an appointment with somebody.

Mackhenz Ngongoma on May 10, 2015:

I'm not that guy use to read story but this make me read story

maggie nhlapo on April 22, 2015:

I really love it,it is so interesting ummmm...gents learn how to say no...laaag

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on March 25, 2015:

Her remarks were sarcastic: "I never eat more than one thing for luncheon" "I'm not in the least hungry", yet she picked up a huge peach, she remarked her luncheon was just a snack " I never eat anything for luncheon", I'm not in the least hungry, "I never want more"," I couldn't possibly eat anything more."

This depicts the irony of the story.

Children I pray God give you all a good success. God bless you all.

kheka zhimo on March 24, 2015:

What is the irony of the story??

Donald on March 09, 2015:

Short straight to the main facts with simple understandable English.Big up!!

anbarasi on March 07, 2015:

very nice story, i like it .thank you

theo on March 05, 2015:

I never eat anything for luncheon(explain how the woman contradicted this way in the way she behaved at the luncheon,Why did this upset the writer so much)100-200 word

ranjana on March 04, 2015:

Its nice story .....i was reviewing this story ...n your summary helped me slot..thank u

Mereseini Naola on February 27, 2015:

wow....its tremendously amazing.

Shamita on February 24, 2015:

what will be the thesis statement of this story?

yamkela mkhize on February 21, 2015:

Wow this story is intresting ,ilike it

nihlaaslam on February 06, 2015:

Its goood to me

hy this is Amantle Sehunoe whos loving the book of luncheon nd fully understand it..am doing it with mr Madisa At Malefo 12A on January 28, 2015:

Amantle Sehunoe

Tarunaa on December 02, 2014:

Nice summary, very helpful

Thanks

dfgrwe on November 28, 2014:

morghem is a favourite writer of mine.

thanks

rgtrhw on November 28, 2014:

nice summary . thankxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Sushmita ( Shivsena) Pravin mestry on November 25, 2014:

Nice one

need to learn something

lini on November 19, 2014:

hhohhgilo;

Vivek Mohan on November 13, 2014:

My ever time favorite short story, well crafted and narrated by Somerset Maugham clubbed with humorous incidents.

mayimele Felix on November 09, 2014:

This is just one great story

zandile mabuza on September 05, 2014:

Its a very intresting story I luv it.

suhanna on August 05, 2014:

execellent story to view

olga khumlo on August 03, 2014:

At the Foyot's restaurant the most expensive dishes are served as told in the Notes from London Daily Telegraph 18 August 1894 p 6. William was not a very rich man. Sorry son I was down with Flue. You can e-mail for any emergency need to gemsgleanings@gmail.com

Qhawekazi on July 31, 2014:

Hlw I want my answer plz

I'm Qhawekazi Langa on July 31, 2014:

I wnt 2 ask ths question why didn't he mind her talking so much?

Qhawekazi on July 31, 2014:

I wnt 2 ask this question why had the writer never thought of eating at Foyot's restaurant?

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on June 23, 2014:

Dear kids if you need script by dialogue, please write it and send it to gemsgleanings@gmail.com, I will correct it and send it back to you.

Shreyansh Vats on June 22, 2014:

good 2 good 3 good 4 good 4 good 4 rjsjngd

aaannnnnnnnaaaaaaannnnnnaaannnnnnnnnnnntttttttttttttt on June 22, 2014:

gooooooood humourose 1 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

i am speech less ? **** the woman

abhash on June 22, 2014:

mast story hai ! by advocate anant

olga khumlo on June 12, 2014:

Hello! Thanks guys you're appreciation is encouraging. God bless you all.

bridgette zwane on June 12, 2014:

Thanks a lot was a nice understable summery short and simple

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on May 28, 2014:

Hi! Xichavo, William Somerset is exposing the false motives of modest eating habits. The lady, only an admirer of the author does not even consider the rising bill that the author would have to pay rather giving in to her greed. He finds twenty years later that the lady had to pay for her greediness, then that she weighed One Hundred and Thirty -Six Kilograms, which Somerset refers to 'the revenge'.

Xichavo mathebane on May 27, 2014:

I dont understand the ending of this story.. I mean about the revenge

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on May 02, 2014:

God bless you child.

Zuhayer on May 02, 2014:

hello Olga Khumlo I made a mistake on that comment. I have written ''with whole mouth". So it will be "for whole month''. Sorry.

wow nyc story on April 30, 2014:

Makungu Ndlovu

Zuhayer on April 30, 2014:

That's a very nice and interesting story. The most interesting part was when the bill came, he walked out of the restaurant with whole mouth that he sees there is not a penny in his pocket. Haaaaa.

betty on February 28, 2014:

am interested in dis story its a lovly story

Olga khumlo on February 18, 2014:

Thank you children for your appreciation. God bless you all in your studies and help you to build a bright and promising career

Olga khumlo on February 18, 2014:

Thank you children for your appreciation. God bless you all in your studies and help you to build a bright and promising career

sandy on February 18, 2014:

its quiet interesting and even useful.the author is great

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on January 21, 2014:

Thank you guys, God bless you.

jigyasa kanda on January 20, 2014:

Its a group activity in which i have to speak about the 2nd para of this story .It was very useful for me .

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on December 26, 2013:

Thank you guys for your appreciation.

meera on December 22, 2013:

this is how we should not be.........

dipit on December 10, 2013:

this is known as story

the lady that i love most

saliwa on September 03, 2013:

lovely story by the way

arsh on July 31, 2013:

nice story

kheimor on July 15, 2013:

awesome!!!!!!!wounderful indeed!!!

jess on May 14, 2013:

loved this story

ankurjain on April 22, 2013:

this story is very exciting

mohammed on April 01, 2013:

thank

Snoo24 on March 07, 2013:

I have read this story a million times yet it feels as much interesting as it did when i read it for the first time... good explanation.. thank you!

ayursh arya on September 07, 2012:

nice story written by somerset....

vuledzani muhadi on August 06, 2012:

me i read about dis story is very very good and enjoyable dat 9c people lean 2 say no 2 de woman

camilla on July 07, 2012:

M in tertiary and my little brother is doing grade 11 and he's the one who introduced me to "the luncheon" I just think its a great story and many can relate to it....

Clifton Chikometsa on June 26, 2012:

It is a nice story

aaa on June 21, 2012:

gud 1

olga khumlo (author) from Mira Road Mumbai India on June 17, 2012:

Thank you children for your appreciation. God bless you all in your studies and help you to build a bright and promising career.

Nqoh on June 16, 2012:

I have red abt this story at schul,d principal taught us n nw i undrstand it better

Martha on June 11, 2012:

A love dis short storie very nyc..we where sooo death by laughter in ma class,it was nyc reading it with ma matric 2012

Tsatsi J on May 29, 2012:

Yah short stories hey! It was tough at first bt due to ur unfalling help,am able to tacle each nd every question abt the short stories. In actual fact nt jst i bt we r very much thankful.

Lekeka T on May 29, 2012:

Guys i apreciate wat u done for and my friend tx we already pass im doing matric.

Busiswa somniso on May 27, 2012:

I like this story nd i knw it we doing that stry at my sku 2mrw i'm gna wrte about it nd coffe-cartgirl lv it

Thembie Simelane on May 27, 2012:

Yestadae nyt i read the story, nd 4 ths lil sammary I AM GOING TO PASS ma Test 2mrw. Tank u..

Msheffee on May 26, 2012:

This story is great and usefull for those who can't say no to a woman.