Thanks for stopping by during the A to Z Blog Challenge. I am blogging daily (except Sunday) on the theme of “Living in a Mermaid World.” Today I’d like to share what is probably the most familiar of all mermaid stories.
L is for The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen.
Most people’s knowledge of mermaids is based on the Disney animated version of The Little Mermaid. Of course this is a wonderful animated movie but, as most things Disney, it is not a faithful adaptation of the original tale but is transformed to become more family friendly.
The Little Mermaid was written by Danish Author, Hans Christian Andersen in 1836. This story is considered to be one of his best. It is the sad tale of a young mermaid who falls in love with a prince she rescues from drowning in the sea. In the attempt to gain the love of the prince and a human soul, she willing gives up her life in the sea. It does not end well. There have been many adaptations of the story, most notably the Disney version.
If you haven’t read the original version here is a link to the text of The Little Mermaid.
Here is a link to an interesting article that explains the differences between Andersen’s original story and the Disney version.
The story of The Little Mermaid has appealed to many artists. Here are a few that I think are worth sharing:
This statue of The Little Mermaid was created by sculptor Edvard Eriksen. It is located in Copenhagen and is the most popular tourist attraction in Denmark.
Illustrator Chihiro Iwasaki Picture Book Studio 1984
Illustrator Michael Hague Published by Henry Holt 1994
Illustrator Rachel Isadora Published by Putnam 1998
Illustrator Lisbeth Zwerger Published by Mineedition 2004
Illustrator Robert Sabuda published by Little Simon 2013 (It’s a pop up book!)
Do you enjoy reading different versions of classic fairy tales?
Trine Grillo says
Thanks for linking the original Hans Christian Andersen version..
I have always loved the Copenhagen statue. Maybe someday I will see it.
As we were leaving school my son asked why girls like mermaids. “They are so gross!” he said. I’m not sure I adequately explained, but your theme hits the target.
Claire Annette Noland says
There are a few stories with mermen. I wonder why there aren’t more?
I LOVE anything by Robert Sabuda!
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evelyne holingue says
Ah finally a mermaid I saw. When I was still living in France my husband and I traveled to northern Europe and I insisted to see the Little Mermaid in Copenhagen. It took us a while to spot her because for some reason I imagined her larger. But I so glad I saw her since I love Andersen’s work.
Keep up the good work, Claire.
Love the combo of history and book suggestions.
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I do enjoy learning about the different versions of fairytales because I get to learn more about similarities and differences between the cultures and communities that share these stories.
I have always found Andersen’s stories so sad. When I was a kid, I coudl barely read them.
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Claire Annette Noland says
You are right -his tales have such sad endings. The only one that I can think of that’s and exception is The Ugly Duckling.
Cathy Kennedy says
Thanks for stopping by yesterday and letting me know about your 2016 A to Z theme which is a close tie in with my A2Z art sketch theme this year. A mermaid world offers a broader topic to develop illustrations from should I ever need to know more but probably won’t this time around. 🙂 Have a good day!