Step 6 of 6
The role of the falcon
Taming a falcon is very difficult; you could say it is almost an artform in itself. It is something that has been around for a long time, and it is still practiced today. From Europe to Mongolia to the U.S.A., from Africa to the Middle East. The bond between the falcon and the falconer is crucial. They have to forge a close relationship, otherwise the falcon would do whatever it wants. Training the bird usually takes much patience and time. The falcon becomes like a life companion to the falconer; maybe in the novella the falcon fills the role of the woman. Regarding the last point, it could be suggested that the sacrifice of the falcon in the novella symbolizes the hope of love in Federigo’s life.
This also demonstrates the point of Vittore Branca, who noted that the falcon is a symbol of the victory of voluptuousness.
When he has lost almost everything, he still offers his most worthwhile possession to honor her. With this, Federigio conquered Giovanna’s heart. She speaks to her brothers: “Brothers mine,’ answered she, “I know very well that it is as you say; but I would liefer have a man that lacketh of riches than riches that lack of a man.”
Before you’re off to another literary object in Decameron (maybe even a bird ), we encourage you to read more about the role of falcons in people's lives and literature...