In this week’s edition of Grimm fairy tales, we’ve got yet another famous tale – Cinderella. Other than this I’ve got 4 stories I don’t remember reading, although the one about Hulda sounds kind of familiar.
It seems today’s children legend leaves us with only four more left. They should actually call them Christian legends, as they’re all about saints, sins, and martyrs.
In today’s episode:
- The Three Green Twigs
- The Riddle
- The Mouse, the Bird, and the Sausage
- Mother Hulda
I barely finished this post today. You’d think I learned from the last one and wrote it earlier right? Wrong! This week I was very, very busy… playing games and coloring my new Mandala coloring book :P. Very busy right? Oh and Wednesday was super busy… I was watching all three Back to the future movies :D.
The Three Green Twigs
The first story this week is about a hermit. He was a good man all his life, feeding the animals, giving them water. He was rewarded for his deeds by receiving food from God each day. But one day, when he saw a man being conducted to the gallows, he thought to himself “this man surely deserves it”. That single thought was his undoing. The next day he did not receive any food.
To pay for his sins he had to wander the world, live only on the food being given to him from good will and each night, when he was going to sleep, he had to keep a dry twig next to his head. When the twig will release three leaves his sins will be forgiven.
It seems to me this is a very rough punishment for one thought. People think about many things throughout their lives and not all of them are good and kind. Sometimes we can’t even control these things, some things just come to our minds. Yes, I get it, that you shouldn’t judge someone just by looking at them. That is true, but let’s face it, we put tags to everyone and everything we see.
We’re writing about books here all the time right, so how about covers? Can you tell me there’s not even one book you judged just by the cover? And that’s just books, one single picture can make you think all kinds of things. It’s the same when you’ll look at someone’s face, his clothes, his posture. Without talking to someone you already have some kind of opinion about that person even though you shouldn’t.
Moral: don’t judge people before getting to know them.
Oh, Cinderella. The story known by all retold by many. It seems all the retelling tell you how Cinderella’s father loved her dearly, how he cared for her until he died. Well in this one he lives. He lets his new wife and her daughters humiliate Cinderella, use her as a servant while the rest of the family lives in comfort and wealth.
How’s that for a loving father, huh? The only comfort the girl has been a bird over her mother’s grave, who grants her wishes. Funny that she never asks for living in comfort and happiness, or something that would let her be happy.
There comes the time of the great ball – a three-day event during which the prince will choose his future wife. All the ladies are invited, but Cinderella’s stepmother doesn’t let her go.
It’s good that the girl has her wishing bird…
I think I like other versions of this story more. The ones in which her father is a good man, where her sisters are behaving worse because in this one the story says the girls are vile at hearts, but it doesn’t show it. It seems like at the end they’re punished for what their mother did.
It seems to me that Grimm brother’s should listen to Chekhov’s quote:
Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.
I really like that one, pity it was written so late because some of the earlier authors could use it too (and some of the current ones).
Moral: be a good and honest girl and don’t run from the prince! Although it was the first date and, let’s face it, he was behaving rather possessive.
Here’s a tale about a selfish princess and a prince who travels through the world. After few adventures, he finds himself in princesses kingdom and he wants to compete for her hand in marriage.
Princess asks for just one thing in exchange for her hand – a riddle that she won’t know the answer to. She has 3 days to find the answer and if she will – the prince will die.
But the prince has a perfect riddle. One that deals with his earlier adventures.
Since princess doesn’t know the answer, she tries to cheat her way out of this marriage.
The prince in this story was surprisingly likable. He was actually listening to others, he didn’t force his way through, he used his knowledge well, although the question was rather tricky, but since the princess deserved it, I’m good with it :).
Moral: You will go a long way with truth and wit. Lying won’t pay off.
The Mouse, the Bird, and the Sausage
Let’s talk about the weird tales again. Here we have three unlikely… creatures trying to live together. They thought about everything, decided who takes care of what in their home. Their life was almost perfect. But then they got bored…
Yes, this story shows you how bad it is to change places, how you should keep doing what you agreed on and never complain. Well, you can imagine that it might be quite tiresome. I didn’t like this tale.
Moral: Be happy with what you’ve got, someone else’s role might not be for you. Then again… it looks like this story tells you “know your place” and I don’t like it.
Oh yes, yet another story with an abusing mother, a good and pretty [Sarah] and bad and ugly sister. It seems there are few of these in the book and this probably isn’t the last one.
Anyway, this time the good daughter goes to do some of her work by the well sent there by her mother. By accident, she drops her spindle to the well. Her mother is not forgiving, she makes Sarah go back to the well and get the spindle.
By falling into the well Sarah ends up in mother Hulda’s house. Hulda seems to be some kind of goddess responsible for snow. Sarah stays in her home in exchange for taking care of the home. Sarah does her best, but at some point she starts missing her home. Hulda rewards her for her good service by covering her with gold and sending her back home.
Obviously the other sister seeing that wants to get the same thing, but I think you might guess how it ends?
These stories are always nice to read. The good ones win, the bad ones get what they deserved.
Moral: yet again it should probably be – be good and kind.
What do you think of these stories?