This is my last fairy tale in my Classic Tales by Hans Christian Andersen. I’ve enjoyed exploring his tales, some of which were completely new to me.
This week I read Grandmother. It’s all about an old lady who loves to look at a rose. She keeps it in her hymn book as it makes her relive the past. Grandmother dies and a rose tree is planted in memory of the dear lady. The preserved dust (and Grandmother!) eventually turn to dust, but everyone’s memories of the rose and Grandmother still remain.
Next Fairy Tale- A Year of Fairy Tales begins…
This is a strange little fairy tale. It actually made me a little uncomfortable! I’m not a big fan of stories that promote people knowing best. We all mistakes and no one is perfect. But chill, Chrissi, it’s only a story. It’s about a farmer who goes off to market to sell his horse. His wife gives him a kiss goodbye and tells him to do whatever he wants because he always knows best. (!?)
The farmer trades the horse for a cow, the cow for a sheep and then the sheep for a goose. The goose is then traded for a hen and the hen for some rotting apples. He takes the apples because he tells the traders that his wife will always think he’s done the right thing. The people that traded the rotten apples with him are sure that he’s going to get beaten by his wife. They place a bet with the farmer that he’ll be in trouble with his wife. They owe him gold if they are wrong. The men go home with the farmer, fully expecting him to be rollicked by his wife. However, his wife must truly love him because she’s thrilled with his trade. She tells him how she wants to give the apples to the school-mistress some apples because nothing grows in her garden. The men are blown away by the wife’s positive attitude and gladly hand over the gold!
Next Fairy Tale (My last Hans Christian Andersen!)- Grandmother
No, no. This isn’t The Philosopher’s Stone that you might think it could be. This is Hans Christian Andersen’s version. It’s all about a wise man who lives in a giant tree called the Tree of the Sun. He has five kids including four sons and a daughter. The daughter is blind. The wise man’s sons go out to look for the philosopher’s stone. Each son goes out to look for the philosopher’s stone. Each son fails. They are either tricked by the Devil or loses sight of their quest. The girl, the least expected, does a few good deeds and is able to get her brothers to return to her and her father. The story is all about having faith and belief.
Next Fairy Tale- What The Old Man Does Is Always Right
This week’s fairy tale was called The Money-Pig. It is also known as The Piggy Bank. It centres around some toys in a child’s room. They want to play at being human. I always imagined this was exactly what happened when I left my room when I was younger! 🙂 The high up piggy bank on the shelf didn’t speak to the other toys and didn’t want to join in with their games. The piggy bank has a great fall and breaks open, spilling its coins everywhere. The next day, it is replaced by a new one, but it’s completely empty! Perhaps it taught the old one a lesson not to be too above its station!
Next Fairy Tale- The Philosopher’s Stone (No, not that one…)
This week’s fairy tale is also known as A Story From The Dunes. It was a very odd tale with a lot of death in it. Cheery, hey?
It centres around a young couple living in Spain. The couple are sent to Stockholm and then St. Petersburg. The couple are very religious and dedicated to God. On their travels, the ship they are travelling on is wrecked. The wife survives and is found on the coast of Jutland. The wife gives birth to a baby boy and then dies. A fisherman and his wife take the boy in and name him Jorgen. This all happens along the sandhills.
When Jorgen grows up he begins to explore the world and goes to sea as a cabin boy. Jorgen sails to Spain and feels like he belongs there. Jorgen inherits his foster father’s house and being kind and lovely he gives it to his best friend so his best friend can marry his love. In a strange turn of events, Jorgen’s best friend is murdered. Everyone thinks that Jorgen had something to do with it because he quite fancied his best friend’s girl. Jorgen is locked up until they find the real murderer.
A merchant takes in Jorgen and looks after him. Poor Jorgen’s luck doesn’t change because he falls in love with the merchant’s daughter and then she dies in a shipwreck despite Jorgen’s best efforts to save her. Jorgen is hit in the head by some wood and is never quite Jorgen-like again. The merchant’s family continue to look after Jorgen but they die too. It seems like everyone in Jorgen’s life is dying. Jorgen has a vision in a church where he marries his intended in front of his foster family. Jorgen dies! 😦 The church is buried amongst the sandhills… so at least he has a nice place to rest?!
Next Fairy Tale- The Money-Pig
This week’s fairy tale is also known as What The Wind Told About Valdemar Daae and His Daughters. It’s a strange little tale that didn’t really make much of an impact on me. In the story, the wind tells a tale about a castle and Valdemar Daae and his daughters. Valdemar goes a little bit crazy as he’s desperate for gold. He tries way too hard to get it and ends up losing everything. Valdemar and his daughters end up incredibly poor and they die poor too.
Next Fairy Tale- A Story From The Sand-Hills
This week’s fairy tale is also known as Lovely. It centres around a young sculptor who totally liked a widow’s daughter named Kala. She really is quite beautiful. Luckily, he gets to marry her but he finds out that she’s not that exciting. He travels with Kala and her mother. Sadly, Kala dies. The sculptor marries again, but this time he marries someone ugly but smart and sensible. She’s Kala’s friend, Sophie. Sophie tells him that he will reunite with Kala in heaven and he’ll still find her beautiful.
I felt like this was quite a harsh little tale! I’m pretty sure that beautiful people aren’t all dull and ugly people aren’t all smart and savvy. It’s quite judgemental but there you go…
Next Fairy Tale- The Wind’s Tale