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Perrault's Fairy Tales

4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  6,718 ratings  ·  130 reviews
Here are the original eight stories from the 1697 volume Contes de temps passé by the great Charles Perrault (1628–1703) in a translation that retains the charming and unsentimental simplicity that has won Perrault a permanent position in French literature. These were among the earliest versions of some of our most familiar fairy tales ("Cinderella," "Sleeping Beauty," "Li ...more
Paperback, 117 pages
Published June 1st 1969 by Dover Publications (first published 1694)
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The Best Fairytales and Retellings
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Petra Xtra Crunchy
Edit Riquet with the Tuft - review of a Perrault fairy tale that is mystifyingly not a Disney movie.

When I was very young, my grandmother had a set of very small books with uncut pages. One of the books was an early edition of Charles Perrault's fairy tales with hand-printed woodblock illustrations. Another was Grimms'. Naturally I cut the pages and read the stories which were bloody and didn't always have nice endings. At least one of the ugly sisters tumbled into a well to be devoured by snake
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Steve


Charles Perrault (1628 – 1703) was a controversial figure who argued before the Académie française (at his initiation ceremony(!)) that "modern" French literature was superior to that of the Greco-Romans. That enlivened the proceedings... Later, he elaborated his reasons and included the less than convincing argument that because the reign of Louis XIV was so enlightened, his age was superior in all respects to that of the ancients. Apparently, he spent part of his life writing epic poems with C
...more
K.D. Absolutely
Dec 28, 2012 K.D. Absolutely rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to K.D. by: 501 Must Read Books (Children's)
Shelves: 501, collection, childrens
The original fairy tales of Charles Perrault (1628-1703) before they were bastardized or sanitized (depending on your view) by Disney. Perrault, however, did not invent most of these stories himself. He also based some of them on existing French folklores. Perrault was said to be the one who laid the foundations for a new literary genre: the fairy tale. Many of Perrault’s stories were rewritten by the Brothers Grimm, continue to be printed and have been adapted to opera, ballet (such as Tchaikov ...more
Jonathan

Once upon a time, long before farmboys arose to defeat Dark Lords and even longer before the rise of imagined histories attempting to be gritty in a way that removed most moral compasses from fantasy, there was the fairytale. A simple little literary beast masquerading as a story with a morality play contained within its fascinating bounds. A little creation marketed for children but one which contained deeper adult themes. Fairytales did not need to attempt to be gritty, they simply were in how
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David
In addition to the usual list of difficulties encountered when learning any foreign language, French has a few specific wrinkles of its own. In particular, there are certain verb tenses that have fallen into disuse, so that they are no longer used when speaking, but may still be encountered in written French, particularly in older texts.

Most intermediate French students will have seen at least one of these, the so-called "simple past tense", or passé simple. Although it has been completely repla
...more
Chagall
Finalmente una bella traduzione delle fiabe di Perrault! Eh sì, perché tra adattamenti, semplificazioni, retelling e così via - peraltro quasi tutti pietosi e omologati allo stile Disney - finiamo per dimenticarci l’origine di tanta grazia. Sfogliando queste pagine (ri)scopriamo che la bella addormentata non si svegliò con un bacio. Che Cappuccetto Rosso non venne salvata dal cacciatore. E che il re di Pelle d’Asino voleva sposare nientemeno che sua figlia! Soprattutto, troviamo uno stile impecc ...more
Muphyn
Sep 11, 2011 Muphyn rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Infinite Playlist
Not having read any of Perrault's fairytales before, I didn't quite realise what I was in for... And people say that Grimm's fairytales are gruesome - huh, think again and read Perrault's!

There's an ogre appearing in about almost every single one of the eight tales in this edition, and, of course, they love eating fresh flesh (i.e. little people) and do so without delay. Yet in a strange way, I found these tales delightful and just so different to the Grimm's; in fact, they made me laugh out lou
...more
Ana Rînceanu
These stories were predominat in my childhood so now as an adult I have decided to re-read them. I was slightly shocked there was no happy ending at times and also the language used can be at times harsh, but Charles Perrault lived in the 17th century so there was no need to use kid-gloves. But what I enjoy most is that after the traditional story there is a moral at the end in the form of a poem that even as adults we can enjoy.
Camille
La magie de Perrault opère à tous les coups. Chacun de ces contes recèle son lot de princesses endormies, de bottes ensorcelées et d'ogres affamés : tous les éléments sont réunis pour des récits merveilleux qui enchanteront petits et grands. La plupart se terminent par une ou deux moralités, mais le contenu de ces contes est si riche que le lecteur se sent libre de pouvoir les interpréter de diverses façons.
Sandra
Eu adoro estes livrinhos de bolso da Europa-América.
São baratos, com uma diversidade de títulos que satisfaz qualquer leitor mais exigente e, na minha opinião, de boa qualidade. O único senão é a letrinha quase microscópica que me custa tanto ler, principalmente à noite.

É curioso que a versão que eu conhecia e a original aqui retratada neste livro sejam tão diferentes.
Por exemplo, a história do Capuchinho Vermelho foi bastante alterada, assim como o Polegarzinho. Mas outras mantiveram-se intacta
...more
Germano Dalcielo
Soprassiedo sulla traduzione arcaica e mi soffermo piuttosto sull’intramontabilità di alcune fiabe (su tutte Pollicino e Cappuccetto rosso), tanto profonde e pregne di "morale" quanto attuali. Rilette a distanza di vent’anni, mi meraviglio che siano ancora oggi considerate fiabe per bambini. Pensiamo proprio alla prima che ho appena citato: si parla di abbandono di minore, povertà, fame, problema delle nascite, sopravvivenza e (scampata) morte. Siamo sicuri che siano argomenti adatti a dei bambi ...more
Ashley
Excerpt from my full review at seattlebooks.tumblr.com:

I resent the United Kingdom for being so far away from my own home, mostly because they have the loveliest books. Sometimes, I like to go on Penguin’s site and browse their UK inventory, knowing that as soon as I fill my digital shopping cart they will politely, regretfully inform me that I do not live far enough outside the States.

Thankfully, I was able to snag two gorgeous books through an independent Amazon seller a few weeks ago: one, a
...more
Allison
I have always been fascinated in retellings of fairy tales, but somehow, I've not read the "originals" since I was in fourth of fifth grade. Now that I'm the selector for fairy tales at work, I am surrounded by them daily. So when I saw Perrault sitting on the shelf the other day, I took it eagerly.

Interesting things to note:

1) Many people consider original fairy tales to be written by the Grimm brothers. (They were actually compiled and rewritten...) Many forget Perrault's tales which were com
...more
Fabiola G.
Non si è mai troppo grandi!
Contiene:

1) I racconti di Mamma l'Oca di Charles Perrault
- Cappuccetto rosso: 5*;
- Barbablù: 4 e ½*;
- Il Gatto con gli stivali: 5*;
- Cenerentola: 3*;
- Le Fate: 4-*;
- La Bella addormentata nel bosco: 3 e ½*;
- Pollicino: 4-*;
- Enrichetto dal Ciuffo: 4-/4*;
- Pelle d'Asino: 4*.

2) Le Fate alla moda di Madame d'Aulnoy
- Il Nano Giallo: 4 e ½*;
- Il ramoscello d'oro: 4-*;
- La principessa Rosetta: 3*;
- Graziosa e Persinetto: 3+*;
- La principessa Bella-Stella: 5-*;
...more
Quentito
Ce livre m'a replongé dans les contes de mon enfance, et c'est avec plaisir que l'on retrouve le Petit Chaperon rouge ou le Chat botté... Les morales sont aussi intéressantes, et plus originales que je ne le pensais. Cependant l'histoire reste simple, peu profonde et parfois confuse.
Fiona Robson
This was fascinating. I only really read it because of its connections with the Rennes-le-Chateau mystery and Le Serpent Rouge, but enjoyed it nontheless.
Ian Hu
The magical tales of Perrault have been an inspiration for many movies and books, and it is easy to see why! Perrault transports us into a world where princesses are in distress, princes save the day and evil beings strive to undermine the good wills of protagonists.

There would be some tales one is bound to recognize, such as Cinderella or Puss in Boots. If you are reading the version which is illustrated by Gustave Dore, then the enjoyment is doubled as one gets to look at the woodcuts and foll
...more
Sarah Shaw
Jul 24, 2011 Sarah Shaw rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: yes
This book was a bit of a struggle, however, it was enjoyable.
At the beginning you need to get through the preface, introduction, translation notes and more, it made me feel this was a study into Charles rather than an enjoyable book to read, I consider it more of a theses than a story. That said, Christopher Betts is extremely knowledgeable about Mr Perrault and does go into a lot of detail setting the scene, explaining the history and also looking at Charles's life, seeing how these came about,
...more
Christopher Roberts
Many people have written in these reviews that Perrault had based his stories on previous folktales. While this may be true of Bluebeard and Sleeping Beauty it is not likely true of any of the other stories but nobody knows for sure. Little Red Riding Hood in particular seems to be a story that originated with this author. Perrault himself plays with the ideas of these stories originating from an oral history by sometimes giving two versions of events. as if he had heard the story from multiple ...more
Tonk82
En realidad lo que he leído es la edición española de Alianza, pero no la he visto por GoodReads.

Siempre hay bastante discusión sobre los "verdaderos" cuentos de hadas. Que si Grimm, que si Andersen, comparaciones con las adaptaciones posteriores de Disney o Tv... y Perrault. Pero siempre que se habla de estos temas me da la sensación de que Perrault queda como en un 2º plano.

Charles Perrault fue un recopilador francés del siglo XVII. Sus narraciones están enfocadas a varios sectores nobles de l
...more
Aurelie
This book is one of my favorite book from my childhood : Charles Perrault's stories are some of the most famous fairy tales known, and especially in France, where it's a must-read for children.
I own the french version of this book, which contains eight fairy tales : Sleeping Beauty, Little Red Riding Hood, Bluebeard, Puss in Boots, Diamonds and Toads, Cinderella, Riquet with the Tuft and Hop o' My Thumb.

Like in most fairy tales, the characters are heavily stereotyped (the sweet and innocent pr
...more
Rhys
This was a disappointing book, but that isn't the fault of Angela Carter... I've wanted to read Carter for a long time, ever since a writer I admire recommended her to me. Unfortunately I chose the wrong Carter to begin with. That's because this book isn't really Carter at all, but her own adjusted translations of a set of fairy tales written by Charles Perrault.

I've never really been a fan of fairy tales, and I didn't even enjoy Calvino's collection of Italian folk tales (and Calvino is my favo
...more
Natalie
Giving this 5 stars simply because I'm a huge sucker for fairy tales. However, don't let the term "fairy tale" fool you, as the stories in this book are the original French "conte de fées" versions of many Disney adaptations. I'm not sure if I would suggest this for children, however the ambiguity will most likely be lost on them anyway so what could it hurt? As the description says and as I've already pointed out, this is a compilation of fairy tales in their original French form (Cinderella, S ...more
JoV
After reading Grimm Tales compiled by Philip Pullman, I was interested to read more fairy tales. Angela Carter’s name is synonym with fairy tales and her inspiration begins when she translated Charles Perrault’s classical collection of fairy tales.

If I am right (because I was just born then), the feminists thinking gave birth in the 1970′s and when Angela Carter translated these fairy tales, she gave it a feminist twist and write an excerpt that carries the title “Moral” at the end of the 10 fai
...more
Chris
When you hear fairy tales, what first comes into your mind? Most probably like anybody else, you would associate it with princesses yearning for true love and godmothers or fairies helping them to achieve that. While most fairy tales do have such plot, it is not all true. In this translation of Perrault’s eight beloved classic (the original was written in French), you will see for yourself that there’s more to ‘fairy tales’ than what its name suggests.

Perrault’s Fairy Tales contains some tales w
...more
Fox
I purchased this book many years ago at the Book Alcove (now Wonderbooks.) I was in a fairy tale appreciation stage that I never truly got out of. This book, from 1968, is utterly delightful. The illustrations, while definitely showing the time the book was printed, are still beautiful - and in the case of Puss in Boots - purely amusing.

I enjoyed the way that these books were told. While it lacked a framing story (something I did enjoy in Old Peter's Russian Tales) it still carries a distinct ta
...more
Rose Goodwin
I liked reading this because the stories were different from the Disney type renditions. Perrault's history, along with the stories, are written after the actual fairy tales. It is interesting to read about the differences in how these stories were written down from oral story tellers. There are some that small children should not read because of the violence or morality, but they have good morals at the end of each story. Cinderella was interesting and was actually different than the norm. The ...more
Erika
I liked Perrault's version of these tales better than the Grimm's version. The prose was light but refined and wasn't so darn repetitive like Grimm's. Some endings also come across a bit harsher, like the fate of Red Riding Hood, and I kind of liked that. The moral of the stories at the end was a nice detail as well, specially when more than one was provided.
Euna Lee
In Sasha Moorsom's translations of Perrault's fairy tales, it was VERY interesting to compare and contrast each traditional tale. Using one story for example, the story of "Sleeping Beauty" has by far the most grim ending I've associated to the book! As if there is part 2 of the book, the mother of the prince is an ogre that enjoys eating children and therefore Sleeping Beauty and her children are hidden by the Prince. It has been said that cannibalism runs through many traditional fairy tales b ...more
Tamsen
Hilarious. Completely hilarious. I especially loved how the version of the book I had mentioned the history of each fairy tale. It was neat to read that this was the first published book of fairy tales in 1697, and that Perrault was writing for a very jaded French court. Perrault is a wry, sarcastic bastard with a pretty sick/imaginative mind (depending on the fairy tale). I also enjoyed his moral poems at the end of each tale. My favorite moral was for Hop O' My Thumb:

"Boys who are bright and l
...more
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Charles Perrault was a French author who laid foundations for a new literary genre, the fairy tale, and whose best known tales, offered as if they were pre-existing folk tales, include: Little Red Riding Hood, Sleeping Beauty, Puss in Boots, Cinderella, Bluebeard, Hop o' My Thumb), Diamonds and Toads, Patient Griselda, The Ridiculous Wishes...

Perrault's most famous stories are still in print today
...more
More about Charles Perrault...
Puss in Boots Little Red Riding Hood The Tales Of Mother Goose Beauty and the Beast Sleeping Beauty (Classics Illustrated)

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“FIRST MORAL

Good manners are not easy
They need a little care,
But when we least expect it
Bring rewards both rich and rare.


SECOND MORAL

Brute force or bribes of diamonds
Bend others to your will,
But gentle words have greater power
And gain more conquests still.”
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More quotes…