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The Happy Prince

4.2 of 5 stars 4.20  ·  rating details  ·  12,779 ratings  ·  305 reviews
More than a hundred years ago, Oscar Wilde created this moving story for his children. Now shimmering illustrations, as bejeweled and golden as the Prince himself, give glowing life to the many dimensions of his tale. His story of friendship, love, and a willingness to part with one's own riches may be more important today than ever before. Full color.
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published January 1st 1995 by Dutton Books (first published 1888)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Petra X
Totally rewritten and expanded from the original short and succinct review in the light of some personally derogatory comments concerning my even daring to mention Wilde's anti-semitism. Nov. 18th, 2011

I've always liked Oscar Wilde's prose, if not his drama, but I thought this was an exercise in hypocrisy, or perhaps it was just Oscar Wilde, locked out of the gates of the wealthy aristocracy, just venting his spleen on them. You would think a man who lost everything because of the prejudice agai
...more
Lorraine
This book is about the friendship between a swallow and a statue of a Happy Prince. The Happy Prince truly was just that- happy- in life because he lead a sheltered existence. "My courtiers called me the Happy Prince, and happy indeed I was, if pleasure be happiness." This distinction foreshadows the story's intent to outline for us a deeper meaning in happiness. In life, the Prince was shielded from all misery. He passed, and was immortalized in the statue, which looked down upon the city.

We m
...more
Sketchbook
Written for children, between 1882-1891, these beautiful
stories of delicate charm are for literate adults who alone
can perceive the irony and awareness of life's cruelties.
A poetic wistfulness also mingles with the artless musical
imagery. One critic says they remind him of Fragonard and Rossetti. Another is impressed by the simplicity of Biblical language.

Reviewing the fables a rather hysterical GR slams OW for
anti-semitism because of a perfunctory aside 100 years before
Political Correctness. S
...more
Sarah Brownlee
The most beautiful story I have ever read in my life. I cried reading it as a child and I still cry reading it as an adult. The Happy Prince, a short 'children's' story, tells the life of a prince who was made into a golden statue after he died. In life, he lived a sheltered happy/ignorant life, but in death he saw all the suffering throughout the city. The relationship between the prince and the sparrow is incredible - furthermore, the shallow greed and hypocrisy of the town officials and autho ...more
[Name Redacted]
Having now re-read this, I still feel as though I cannot be sure if I read it once before. It's possible! But it's also possible that I only heard it read! Odd.

In any event, it is a lovely, simple fairy-tale about sacrifice, selflessness and the responsibility of rulers to care for their subjects -- but also about the ways in which good deeds can go unappreciated, and about the blindness which charitable people can exhibit in their desperate quest to serve the needy.

Also, here is the line which
...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
The happy prince, Oscar Wilde (1854 ـ 1900)
عنوان: شاهزاده خوشبخت؛ نویسنده: اسکار وایلد؛ مترجم: حمید حقیقت جو؛ مشخصات نشر: تهران، سازمان کتابهای پرنده آبی، 1344، در 169 ص، اندازه 16 در 11/5 س.م، موضوع: افسانه های پریان از نویسندگان انگلیسی قرن 19 م
پنج داستان کوتاه و شش قطعه ادبی منثور، نوشته اسکار وایلد شاعر و نویسنده ایرلندی، که برای گروه سنی نوجوانان و جوانان ترجمه شده، زندگینامه ی وایلد نیز در ابتدای کتاب آمده است. «شاهزاده خوشبخت»، یکی از قصههای کتاب، درباره ی مجسمه طلایی زیبای شاهزادهای ست،
...more
Linda
Whatever I read by Oscar Wilde I really like, and it always gives me a bittersweet feeling. The pattern in Wilde's literature is so beautiful. This one is no different. Similar to "The nightingale and the rose" this one is about great sacrifices for people in need, sacrifices that go unnoticed by the shallow and rich people - which could really make a big difference.

My review
http://thereaderdiary.blogspot.com
Alexander
This story follows the friendship between the Happy Prince and a Swallow. The Happy Prince as a boy lived in complete luxury and happiness, unaware of the suffering outside his palace walls. The swallow by chance meets the prince after deciding not to migrate yet, because of his love of a reed. Upon meeting the bird the Prince tells the Swallow his story and of his sorrow for the suffering he now sees in his city. The Prince asks the Swallow to help different people in need by stripping away val ...more
Jessica
Sleeping on my friend's couch, having come to school too early for my own room to be open, she offered me her childhood copy of "The Happy Prince and Other Stories" to further my on-going search for pieces to record for my research project. I hadn't known that Oscar Wilde wrote children's stories, much less these delightfully crafted and imaginative parables.

Much like Warner Brother's cartoons, Oscar Wilde's fairy tales have value for both children and the adults who read to them (I found value
...more
Melissa Veras
¿Cómo en trece páginas este hombre logró escribir un cuento de cinco estrellas?
Dylan
Absolutely loved this story.

It truly moved me. It's the story of a swallow that one day, while migrating to Egypt, lands on the shoulder of a golden statue. The statue cries on the bird and tells him of the poor people in the city he watches over, and pleads that he help him alleviate there suffering.

This moved me and brought me to tears by the end of it. It's a thoughtful bittersweet story about helping others in need and caring for one another.
Marts  (Thinker)
So, was he really a "happy prince", well we could call him the once was happy prince and the gentle sparrow who befriended and regardless of his situation stuck with him till death. I guess if some who sit upon their golden thrones were to view the hardship around them they wont be so "happy" either.
David Ceballos Correa
No recordaba estos cuentos, una grata relectura después de más de diez años, de estas fábulas mordaces, que en vez de moraleja llegan algunas a entregarnos una crueldad inmisericorde, pero cotidiana al final de cuentas, transversal en el espacio y el tiempo: i) una estatua-príncipe, acongojada de la miseria que azota al pueblo, una que en su vida anterior jamás conoció en medio de la felicidad que le entregaba la conformidad y el placer, decide aplacar el sufrimiento de los pobladores, en este i ...more
Jaehong
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
John Martindale
Oscar Wilde is sure an interesting character. For if the biography Frank Harris wrote about him is accurate and The Happy Prince was written before 1888. Then it seems "the happy prince" is completely out of character with Oscar. Supposedly during this time, Oscar Wilde, cared only for pleasure, beauty and fame, he was popular with the aristocrats, for he cared nothing for the poor. All that mattered was self-indulgence. Yet in such a state he wrote "The Happy Prince"? interesting. It would make ...more
Mafi
Lido e relido tantas vezes...marcou-me imenso quando era miúda.
Meg
E' forse la novella più commuovente di Wilde, bellissima.
Rana Heshmati
فقط همین یه داستانش رو خوندم.
لیلی
حقیقتا در حد همون سوم دبستان که تو کتاب درسی گذاشتن ش خوب ه! شاید م کمتر حتی!:|
Ahang
خوب به جز چند مورد كه گفتن نداره داستان خيلي معمولي بود :))
Maryam
The irony of it all lays in the title and it makes you laugh at yourself for thinking you'd read about a happy prince. The prince notices the sufferings of other people and decides to help them by giving away his processions. The sparrow helped him a lot into delivering these gestures and stuck with him throughout.
Louisa Klein
So many years have passed, but I still cry every time I read the end. Oscar, you leave me speechless (which is quite an achievement, trust me!)
Bianca Rodríguez
Esta historia, con lo cortita que es, me hizo llorar con el final. Además ya le había cogido cariño a la golondrina :')
Filiz
Mutlu prens icinde yasadigi ihtisamdan siyrilip halka baktiginda "vicdani" onu rahatsiz ediyor, "mutsuz prens" oluyor ta ki yoksulluklarini, perisanliklarini gordugu insanlara heykelinin parcalarini olusturan degerli taslari bitesiye dagitip onlara yardim edene kadar...Ve maalesef asil trajedi degerli taslari gidince harap bitap kalan heykele gosterilen muamele ile basliyor...Ne denir ki bu devirde boylesi bir hikayeye, prens vicdanli olsa DA tek basina yetmiyor iste vicdani adalet saglamaya, to ...more
Carolyn
The three-star rating is a rough average, as the amount to which I enjoyed each of these stories varies. My favourites - "The Nightingale and the Rose", "The Fisherman and His Soul", and "The Birthday of the Infanta" - made my heart swell and twist in lovely ways. Others, like "The Happy Prince" and "The Young King" were not unpleasant to read, but in the end I didn't see much purpose to them beyond vaguely Christian morality tales.

All the stories have beautiful descriptions, sometimes bordering
...more
Brenda
For a book written so long ago, you would think it would have lost something by now, but it truly was a delightful little read.
Ubaid Talpur
what a wonderful story of giving precious things to needy people even one's life, a touching line in book is " Death is the brother of Sleep, is he not?”
Jacquelyn Erickson
This is a beautiful story... Heartbreaking yet so heart touching... One that will stay with you in your heart...
Fatema
I found it so wonderful story about how should the humanity and true friendship are to be.
Julie
This was an apt story to read today. It has the same themes of empathy, sharing and love as The Giving Tree, but executed in a much more successful way, in my opinion. It's a shame that I recently entered one of my own picture book manuscripts with this theme in a competition, and the judge's comments back were mainly that the theme was cliched. Sure, it has been covered before, but does that mean topics about love, mutual understanding and a lack of greed should not be covered any more? Sure, I ...more
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Illustrating Stories 1 6 Jan 08, 2015 05:56AM  
The happy prince - Personal review 4 14 Nov 17, 2014 02:56AM  
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Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde was an Irish playwright, poet and author of numerous short stories and one novel. Known for his biting wit, and a plentitude of aphorisms, he became one of the most successful playwrights of the late Victorian era in London, and one of the greatest celebrities of his day. Several of his plays continue to be widely performed, especially The Importance of Being E ...more
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The Picture of Dorian Gray The Importance of Being Earnest The Importance of Being Earnest and Other Plays   An Ideal Husband The Canterville Ghost

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“Dear Prince, I must leave you, but I will never forget you, and next spring I will bring you back two beautiful jewels in place of those you have given away. The ruby shall be redder than a red rose, and the sapphire shall be as blue as the great sea.” 31 likes
“Surely Love is a wonderful thing. It is more precious than emeralds, and dearer than fine opals. Pearls and pomegranates cannot buy it, nor is it set forth in the marketplace. It may not be purchased of the merchants, for can it be weighed out in the balance for gold.” 26 likes
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