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Mansfield, Katherine. "Bliss".


Bertha Young (30), a fashionable upper-class lady, returns from shopping in high spirits and contemplates her blissful life. The nanny does not want her to feed her little daughter because she might excite her so that she would not sleep.

Bertha gives a dinner for her cultured friends, including the beautiful and mysterious Pearl Fulton. She waits for Miss Fulton to give her a kind of a sign. Finally Miss Fulton asks about her garden and Bertha shows her the garden with a beautiful pear tree in bloom. Miss Fulton seems to feel exactly the same as Bertha does when looking at the tree; Bertha believes there is a mysterious connection between them, a connection which may only exist with two women.

Bertha feels sorry her husband Harry dislikes the lady. When the guests are leaving, she chances to overhear Harry whispering: "I adore you" to Miss Fulton and arranging a date for the next day. On saying goodbye to Bertha, Miss Fulton murmurs: "Your lovely pear tree", Bertha runs to the window to it and again she feels that something must happen, but the pear tree remains exactly the same as it was before.


  • Author

    Mansfield, Katherine. (1888 - 1923).
  • Full Title

  • First Published

    In: Bliss and Other Stories. London: Constable, 1923.
  • Form

    Short story.

Works Cited

Mansfield, Katherine. "Bliss". (1923). Collected Stories. London: Constable, 1948.


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