Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Das Märchen der Märchen. Das Pentamerone.” as Want to Read:
Das Märchen der Märchen. Das Pentamerone.
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Das Märchen der Märchen. Das Pentamerone.

3.8  ·  Rating Details ·  270 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews
(Fairy-Tale Studies)
Kindle Edition
Published (first published 1634)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Das Märchen der Märchen. Das Pentamerone., please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Das Märchen der Märchen. Das Pentamerone.

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Feb 18, 2013 Zadignose rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 17th-century
A Great collection of fairy tales, made great mainly by the style. It has the kind of far out fantastic elements that lingered from folk traditions going back to the middle ages, the sort of thing where a magic box or fairy can do absolutely anything instantly and miraculously, like a genie's lamp or a Holy Grail, and most problems are solved by magical intervention.

If you were to look at the book in terms of ideology, you might be mortified. If the book has an ideology it could be expressed as:
Erin the Avid Reader ⚜BFF's with the Cheshire Cat⚜
Back in these ages, when they wanted to describe something super beautiful or super ugly, they made sure they drilled the descriptions into your skull. These tales are not a forgiving bunch. If somebody is kinda ugly, they are ABOMINATIONS. If somebody is kind of pretty they are PULCHRITUDINOUS. While they don't use these words, they'll use hundreds of words that are like these and enable in and on.

Just wanted to note that about this book.
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
I didn't make it through the introduction, because that first story is racist as fuck and, sure, it was originally written in the 1600s but like I cannot and I don't want to.

The story is about a black slave girl, described as "that mass of dark flesh" who lies and takes the place of a good girl, and becomes the princess. I quit hard when the slave (she doesn't get a name) threatens to kill her baby because the prince was making eyes at the other girl:

"If you no move from windowsill, me punch bel
Igor Garjón sanz
Una de las colecciones de cuentos populares más antiguas de Europa, toda una joya. A veces el lenguaje de Basile es demasiado "Barroco" (él no se limitó a copiar los cuentos, usó un lenguaje más culto y literario), pero es una obra de gran belleza, con cuentos que se alejan de esa imagen de canciones y purpurina que nos ha vendido nuestra sociedad obsesa de lo políticamente correcto. Aquí encontramos joyas como "El mirto", "El cuento del ogro", "las dos tortitas" y "La vieja desollada" (genial e ...more
Jul 12, 2012 Lindsey rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fairy-tale enthusiasts
Shelves: reviewed
Interesting collection of stories, with flavors of both the West and the East (though, thank heaven, with fewer "May he live forevers" than the Arabian Nights). A notable difference from the Grimm collection was that most of the characters had names. I don't know if these are the collector Basile's contributions or a difference of culture.

I enjoyed the author's aversion to just saying "The next day..." or "When the sun rose..." Instead we read "As soon as the Sun with the broom of its rays had
Feb 10, 2016 Gina rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I read these tales in order to have a working knowledge of the origins of some fairy tales - these tales are often absurdly incomprehensible - but do appreciate the loads of footnotes. I collect and study old fairy tales, so this was a necessary read - but didn't enjoy it.
Collection presents early versions of Cinderella, Puss in Boots, and others. Very good. I really enjoyed the story about the king and the two old ladies. This is an adult collection with bawdy humor and a Cinderella who kills a step-mother.
Erin the Avid Reader ⚜BFF's with the Cheshire Cat⚜
It's labeled as entertainment for little ones, but I would not read this to little kids. XD
Benjamin Chandler
Dec 09, 2012 Benjamin Chandler rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was one of the more interesting fairy tale collections I have read.

Collected in the early 1600s by Basile, this book has some of the oldest versions of some of the better-known fairy tales (e.g., Puss In Boots). But it also holds some very bizarre fairy tales I'd never read before. Many of them use plot devices familiar to any folklore buff—like the wicked stepmother, super-talented helpers, ogres of all kinds, enchanted beauties hidden in animal skins or fruit, hidden objects, and (of cour
Samuel Valentino
Jan 04, 2014 Samuel Valentino rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fairy-tales
A fantastic translation, with an informative introduction and very helpful footnotes. This is an excellent resource for the earliest Western versions of some of the most well-loved fairy tales.

Canepa's work is especially welcome, since the last complete English translation was done by Sir Richard Burton in the late 19th century. While his version does tell all the tales, I've read that it is more of a freer translation, and it offers nothing in the way of context or notes. I have a copy of Burto
These are tales copied after being told for centuries in the oral tradition. They can be ribald, raunchy and truly naughty in language, definitely not making these stories for children. They are also rather long and convoluted, one story bleeding into another like an oil spill dropped on delicate silk. Sorting through the threads of the storylines thus becomes something of a challenge in itself, robbing the books of the natural flow one associates with more coherent and less complex plots.
Jan 21, 2014 Emily rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: z-gslis-804-01
Stories I read: The Enchanted Doe, The Three Sisters, The She-Bear, The Raven, The Dragon, and Conclusion
Andrew Nease
Jul 13, 2017 Andrew Nease rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For people who like The Decameron or not-necessarily-kid-friendly fairy tales, but aren't particularly reverent towards either of them, this is a pretty good read. It's cynical, iconoclastic, and bawdy as shit, and I'll bet it can make you actually laugh within the first fifty pages. So why did I dock it a star? Well, as is the case with some of the Brothers Grimm's fairy tales (or even, sometimes, Hans Christian Andersen's), sometimes it was a little grating just HOW cold-blooded these unadulte ...more
Jan 15, 2017 Vincenzo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Basile è un'artista. La sua storia letteraria non inizia con questa opera, anzi fu rinnegata da lui stesso, perché considerava l'arte del saper dire in dialetto come arte del "popolaccio". Il Pentamerone segna tuttavia una svolta decisiva, perché Basile ci rivela il segreto della favola. Ma se vi aspettate di trovare solo piacevoli racconti, dal carattere novellistico, scordatevelo. I racconti hanno una profondità sia linguistica sia morale che ancora oggi è irraggiungibile. Essi entrano nella c ...more
I had noooo idea 17th c. Italians were so obsessed with the state of their bowels. Seriously - so much mention of pooping, dysentery, or constipation - at least several times per story. I would not recommend this for modern children. Entertaining in a fascinating trainwreck sort of way.
Oct 18, 2016 Sara rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
Maybe it's the translation of the book, but this was like trying to read one of those English signs in Japan where you can read the words, but the meaning is lost somewhere along the way. I also think the term bawdy was confused with crude.
Lumos Ktbspa
Oct 14, 2016 Lumos Ktbspa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-clasico
The more you read, the more you learn. The more you get shocked ;) Nice thing.
Oct 01, 2016 Becky rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a brilliant and fantastical collection of early fairy tales. The framing story is really interesting and gives us almost an Arabian Nights set up to work within. Each story is a complete entity, and every one is work reading. The style is light, informal and engaging... I am sure that this is thanks in part to the excellent translation, having read the notes at the start thus has stuck as closely to the original as possible. A few of the attitudes expressed clash with modern sensibilitie ...more
Fantasy Literature
3 stars from Kate, read the full review at FANTASY LITERATURE

The Tale of Tales is a book of fifty Italian fairy-tales collected by Giambattista Basile in the 17th century. Like the famous Middle-Eastern tale collection 1001 Nights, which is told by the queen Scheherezade, these stories are all connected by a larger frame story, in this case that of the melancholy princess Zoza. Zoza cannot laugh, so her father concocts a trick to amuse her. However, when she does laugh at an old woman, the woman
Celia Pérez
Es un libro bastante curioso para leer si se esta interesado en el mundo de los cuentos de hadas. Aquí te encontraras con viejos conocidos de la historias de los hermanos Grimm y Perrault como El gato con botas, La Cenicienta, La Bella Durmiente o Rapunzel, tambien con los hermanos mayores de cuentos menos conocidos como El rey pico de tordo o Los siete cuervos, por poner un par de ejemplos. Seguramente son este libro este tipo de literatura no seria lo que es ahora, ya que esta obra, aunque hoy ...more
I'm actually liking this collection of early fairy tales or whatever you want to call them. This collection is Italian, but the same themes as the Grimm brothers' collection comes through. It's good, but there's a lot to wade through and the old style of writing, the slight variance from what I'm used to, just makes it slow going. So I'm putting it aside for now, on this shelf that I intend to get back to.
Really interesting to read all of these tales in one place - so many are very familiar (you'll find versions of Cinderella, Rapunzel, Hansel & Gretel, Cupid & Psyche etc.), others were completely new to me. I enjoyed the mixture of eastern and western influences, and the language, which is extravagantly metaphorical and also often quite bawdy. There's a fair bit of casual racism and antisemitism, though, which I found quite off-putting. Worth reading, although it's pretty long!
Leslie Ann
Dec 31, 2016 Leslie Ann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great collection of stories, but more R-rated (for violence and sex) than one would expect for today's children. The language is very colorful; I especially enjoyed the sometimes verbose descriptions and the metaphors used for the transition between night and day. Unlike the stories of my beloved Italian Folktales by Italo Calvino, these tales do not end abruptly.
Даже тех немногих историй, переведенных на русский язык достаточно чтобы понять уникальный стиль Базиле и весь средневековый быт с его грязью, неравенством и прочими прелестями. А как пережить такое? Только смеясь, что я с удовольствием и делал, читая эту книгу :)
Jessica Bebenek
Aug 12, 2012 Jessica Bebenek rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thesis
Basically the only good translation of The Tale of Tales (the Pentamerone). Funny, bawdy, and really interesting in light of folktales which follow it. Definitely worth a read if you're into folktales.

Note: Definitely NOT for little ones!
Feb 06, 2016 Tobias rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read2016
Some impressively surreal and/or terrifying imagery in here. And some casual antisemitism and a framing story that has, to put it mildly, racially problematic elements. (Admittedly, this is a collection of stories from the 17th century; still, I cringed a few times while reading it.)
Pedro Garrido
Feb 26, 2016 Pedro Garrido rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
una joya de libro....
Anastazja Maria
If this is a literal translation of the original French..then the French have no flair for literature. These are not stories..but a retelling with no life.
Airlia Gray
Sep 02, 2016 Airlia Gray rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
A.R. Jarvis
Mar 29, 2015 A.R. Jarvis rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fairy-tales
This book is one of the most overtly sexist and racist books of fairy tales I have ever read, and I have read a great deal of fairy tales.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Russian Magic Tales from Pushkin to Platonov
  • The Fairy Tales Of Madame d'Aulnoy
  • The Turnip Princess and Other Newly Discovered Fairy Tales
  • The Great Fairy Tale Tradition: From Straparola and Basile to the Brothers Grimm
  • Orlando Innamorato (Orlando in Love)
  • Little Red Riding Hood, Cinderella & Other Classic Fairy Tales of Charles Perrault
  • Selected Fables
  • Scottish Folk and Fairy Tales
  • Sicilian Uncles
  • The Complete Fairy Tales
  • From the Beast to the Blonde: On Fairy Tales and Their Tellers
  • Chinese Fairy Tales and Fantasies
  • Vis and Ramin
  • Le confessioni d'un Italiano
  • The Annotated Brothers Grimm
  • Tales of the Marvellous and News of the Strange
  • The Viceroys
  • The Annotated Classic Fairy Tales
Born to a Neapolitan middle-class family, Basile was, during his career, a courtier and soldier to various Italian princes, including the doge of Venice. According to Benedetto Croce he was born in 1575, while other sources have February 1566. In Venice he began to write poetry. Later he returned to Naples to serve as a courtier under the patronage of Don Marino II Caracciolo, prince of Avellino, ...more
More about Giambattista Basile...

Share This Book

“Ma a l'ommo, c'have 'ngiegno, non s'è curata de darele sta commodetate, perché sape da se medesemo procacciarese chello che l'abbesogna; chesta è la causa che se vedeno ordenariamente pezziente li sapute e ricche li bestiale, comme da lo cunto che vi dirraggio poterrite racogliere.” 1 likes
“Thus, after all these storms of fate, they experienced the truth that— "One hour in port, the sailor, freed from fears, Forgets the tempests of a hundred years.” 0 likes
More quotes…