This week’s fairy tale was the very well known Thumbelina! I used to adore this fairy tale as a child, so it was really interesting to revisit it as an adult.
Thumbelina starts with a woman asking a witch for help. She wants a tiny child. The witch gives the woman a grain of barley to plant. It grows into a tulip, inside the tulip is a tiny little girl at about one inch long. A toad sees the little girl on the windowsill and kidnaps her, wanting her as a bride for her son. Thumbelina is terrified when she wakes up. She begins to cry, some fish hear her and set her free.
Thumbelina drifts down the river and the poor thing gets kidnapped again, by a May bug. The May bug leaves her by a tree and she finds herself living by herself in the forest. Come winter, a mouse takes Thumbelina in so she doesn’t starve. He, too, wants Thumbelina to marry someone. This time, the mouse’s friend, the mole. Whilst visiting mole, Thumbelina sees a sparrow that looks dead but is actually alive. She sees this as a way to get out of another marriage that she doesn’t want. Thumbelina nurses the sparrow and in return, the sparrow takes Thumbelina away.
Back at the sparrow’s home, Thumbelina comes across a tiny man sitting inside one of the flowers. This man is exactly the same size as Thumbelina and he’s human shaped too like her. What a bonus. The man is king of angels who live inside flowers. He proposes to Thumbelina and gives her a new name…Maja!