Fairy Tales

Classic Tales · Into the Woods · Selchies · Sir Orfeo
Picture - Hansel and Grethel "The realm of fairy-story is wide and deep and high and filled with many things: all manner of beasts and birds are found there; shoreless seas and stars uncounted; beauty that is an enchantment, and an ever-present peril; both joy and sorrow sharp as swords. In that realm a man may, perhaps, count himself fortunate to have wandered, but its very richness and strangeness tie the tongue of the traveller who would report them. And while he is there it is dangerous for him to ask too many questions, lest the gate should be shut and the keys be lost."
-- J.R.R. Tolkien, "On Fairy-Stories," in The Monsters and the Critics and Other Essays

"The fairy tale journey may look like an outward trek across plains and mountains, through castles and forests, but the actual movement is inward, into the lands of the soul. The dark path of the fairy tale forest lies in the shadows of our imagination, the depths of our unconscious. To travel to the wood, to face its dangers, is to emerged transformed by this experience. Particularly for children whose world does not resemble the simplified world of television sit-coms ... this ability to travel inward, to face fear and transform it, is a skill they will use all their lives. We do children--and ourselves--a grave disservice by censoring the old tales, glossing over the darker passages and ambiguities..."

-- Terri Windling, "White as Snow: Fairy Tales and Fantasy," in Snow White, Blood Red

Classic Fairy Tales on the Net

The Brothers Grimm. Grimm's Fairy Tales includes 209 tales collected by the Brothers Grimm, probably based on the translation by Margaret Hunt called Grimm's Household Tales. This site is part of the Universal Library at Carnegie Mellon University.

Märchen der Gebrüder Grimm includes electronic texts of 300 tales and variants, in German. New !

Andrew Lang's Fairy Books. Thirteen volumes are now available as searchable hypertext at Andrew Lang's Fairy Books (New URLs):
Hans Christian Andersen's Fairy Tales and Stories includes 127 tales in the 1872 English translation by H. P. Paull.
Three English Fairy Tale Collections from the Internet Sacred Text Archive:
Contes de Fée, the adult fairy tales of France.

General Resources

SurLaLune Fairy Tales, a survey site by Heidi Anne Heiner, features 35 annotated tales with classic illustrations, links, and discussion boards. Updated
Folktexts, D.L. Ashliman's extensive collection of Folklore and Mythology Electronic Text links at the University of Pittsburgh.
The Fairy Tale Project: a Multimedia Bridge from Language to Literature, undertaken by Germanists at Southwestern University, Ursinus College, and Georgetown University.
Folk and Fairy Tales from Rick Walton's Online Library.
Tales of Wonder: Folk and Fairy Tales from Around the World.

Digging Deeper

Cinderella. The Cinderella Project at the University of Southern Mississippi, edited by Michael N. Salda, is an archive of texts and images containing a dozen English versions of "Cinderella," representing some of the more common varieties of the tale from the English-speaking world in the eighteenth, nineteenth, and early twentieth centuries. Materials to construct this archive were drawn from the de Grummond Children's Literature Research Collection at the University of Southern Mississippi. The earliest text is from the 1729 edition of Perrault's Histories. New URL.

Cinderella Stories is part of David K. Brown's Children's Literature Web Guide at the University of Calgary.

Cinderella: Ashes, Blood, and the Slipper of Glass, an essay by Terri Windling from Realms of Fantasy magazine at the Endicott Studio. New URL.

Little Red Riding Hood. The Little Red Riding Hood Project, like the Cinderella Project, is based at the University of Southern Mississippi, and uses the resources of de Grummond Children's Literature Research Collection. New URL.

Red Riding Hood: A Multimedia Edition (in English)/Rotkäppchen: Eine Multimedia-Ausgabe (in German) at the Fairy Tale Project, Ursinus College, includes Le petit chaperon rouge by Charles Perrault.

Little Red Riding Hood by A'Lisa Ratledge at the University of Tennessee, with text, annotations, and notes.

The Path of Needles or Pins: Little Red Riding Hood, an essay by Terri Windling from Realms of Fantasy magazine, also at the Endicott Studio. New !

Jack the Giant-Killer. The Jack and the Beanstalk and Jack the Giant-Killer Project, also at the University of Southern Mississippi. New URL.
Snow White. Snow White by Kay E. Vandergrift, a "scholarly resource for all those interested in folk and fairy tales and, more specifically, in the tale Snow White." Features texts, illustrations,

Snow White, links to seven versions of the tale, from D. L. Ashliman's Folktexts.

Snow, Glass, Apples: the story of Snow White, an essay by Terri Windling from Realms of Fantasy magazine, also at the Endicott Studio. New URL.

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26 December 2005