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The Star Child : A Fable by Oscar Wilde
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The Star Child : A Fable by Oscar Wilde

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  420 Ratings  ·  42 Reviews
A star falls from the winter sky into a wood, and there two shepherds find a strange infant. Though exquisitely beautiful of face and form, the Star-Child turns out to be a cruel and selfish boy. One day, he taunts a poor beggar-woman who, to his horror, then claims to be his mother. This classic Oscar Wilde story, brought vividly to life by Jindra Capek's colourful and dr ...more
Kindle Edition
Published (first published 1891)
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Dec 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Star-Child is a cautionary tale in Oscar Wilde’s collection of stories, A House of Pomegranates, that gently leads us to reflect on some fundamental truths. Wherein lies the essence of beauty? What makes a person beautiful? It also underlines the pitfalls of pride and vanity, recompense for evil, and the redeeming qualities of humility.

On a cold winter’s night, a poor woodcutter found a child in the forest. He was wrapped in a cloak of golden tissue embroidered with stars. Even though he ha
Feb 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
I liked it, but it was too short to become attached to the character, who was very wicked for the most part. However, may I add this:
'And they fell on his neck and kissed him, and brought him into the palace and clothed him in fair raiment, and set the crown upon his head, and the sceptre in his hand, and over the city that stood stood by the river he ruled and was its lord. Much justice and mercy did he show to all, and the evil Magician he banished, and the Woodcutter and his wife he sent many
Francisco H. González
Oscar Wilde plantea un cuento clásico, a saber, un niño abandonado recién nacido que es recogido en un bosque por unos leñadores tras el advenimiento de una estrella y poco después, a medida que el bebé crece demuestra ser un tirano que desprecia por igual a personas y animales, hasta que esa soberbia y maldad se ven corregidas y el entonces niño y ahora ya mozalbete debe, si es posible, corregir sus errores, una reparación que sí resultará posible, aunque ese clásico final en el que que todos s ...more
John Martindale
Mar 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children, audiobook
After reading a biography written about Wilde by one of his best friends, it looks like all the children books Oscar wrote, were during a time when he ostentatiously worshiped himself and beauty; living lavishly; he was hedonistic and proud; without care for the poor and he was popular among the aristocrats because of it. All this changed after his time in prison (for a while anyways). So yeah, it really is interesting to me that the moral of each of his stories, really ends up being "don't be l ...more
Rao Javed
Feb 18, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-story
I guess it was nothing more than a simple sweet story of a proud person meeting the dark side of world and changing which is not at all anything new.

So it was a nice to tell heart warming story which is good but not at all mind blowing. However its not always necessary to have mind blown is it?
Jul 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
adored it!
Erasmia Kritikou
"Έλα μαζί μου, αστερόπαιδο. Χρειάζομαι την αγάπη σου"

Ο υπέροχος
πάντα συγκινητικός
και εξόχως λογοτεχνικός
-ακόμη και στα παιδικά του παραμύθια-
κύριος Όσκαρ Ουάιλντ
Aug 14, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The last lines of this story seem to me to completely invert its meaning from a moral fable about the virtues of empathy, selflessness and sacrifice into a kind of hedonist's caution of the futility of any individual's efforts to expunge evil from the world. The ultimate lesson appears to be: Look at all this poor child put himself through, and what good did it really do anyone in the end? I may of course be mistaken, but after dipping into this story the other afternoon and reading other's revi ...more
Another warning to be kind to strangers. In this case the Star Child is an infant found abandoned in the woods by the Woodcutter. The Woodcutter and his family take him in, and he grows to be a beautiful, awful child. When confronted by a beggar woman claiming to be his mother, he denies her and voila! is turned into an ugly little creature. He must prove himself and repent before he can be turned back into the beautiful child he was previously.

Quaint, simple, not bad.
Joseph Thomas
Jun 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
It was a lovely little story, as beautifully written as always. I do wish he'd omitted the last few lines, however. You think 'aw that's a nice ending', and then you're slapped down with misery lol.
Jul 02, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, short-story
I love Wilde as always, but have given three stars as it simply wasn't my favourite compared to others I have read in personal taste. seemingly an unpopular opinion but one of my favourite parts was the ending! I believe it says a lot about those in power and how very rare it is that someone kind comes into that power, pointing out that although kindness is so necessary to humanity, few act in such a way, keeping us in a circular loop of the rise and fall of society.
May 17, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Este livro tem umas ilustrações fantásticas e relata a história de uma criança egoísta, demonstrando ao leitor as consequências dos actos que pratica.
É uma leitura simples, moralista e melancólica.
Maria Carmo
I already loved this Author's stories, for instance "The Happy Prince" with it's strong compassion and almost Christic or Buddhist streak... This one inscribes itself for me in a similar registry... Loved the story and the goodness that comes from it....

Maria Carmo,

Lisbon, 13 May 2017.
Luciana Darce
Jan 31, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Esse conto é uma típica fábula moralista e está na mesma linha narrativa de O Príncipe Feliz e O Jovem Rei, tendo um protagonista que começa amando o belo (e a si mesmo) e desprezando tudo e todos que não se adequam aos seus padrões de beleza (embora O Príncipe Feliz apenas diga que o príncipe conhecia apenas o prazer antes de virar estátua, não falando sobre suas preferências, mas apenas de sua ignorância), passando por uma transformação através do sacrifício daquilo que os fazia belos.

É um con
Andrew Schoenfelder
The Star-Child is very enjoyable to read and a good religious story to expose children too. It would be good for children to read a story of a outcast child who chooses evil over good. The ending was rather surprising and seemed to be ending like the happily ever after fairytale, until the last page. The child being found by two shepherds on a snowy night could be compared to other religious stories. Using this in a public school might draw some speculations from certain parents because of the t ...more
E. Merrill
Jan 21, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A wonderful and humbling fairy-tale from a book Oscar Wilde described as "intended neither for the British child nor the British public." Although this is not nearly the best story from Wilde's collection of stories, A House of Pomegranates, The Star-Child is still a classic cautionary tale of the dangers of pride and ego– as well as the redeeming properties of humility and compassion.
Jorge Martinez
Jan 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This story, its message, and the characters inside it, are worthy of the highest reverance. It shows how one must lose everything to gain something. Although the story itself is quite short, it still makes you become familiarize with the main character enough to find him vile, pity him, and atlas become enamoured by him. Mr. Wilde's literary wit lies in his simplistic manner, and his words touch even those who claim to be sagacious. What a wonderful read.
Why does Wilde have these abrupt somber and morose endings to his short stories?! He steers his stories to happy endings and just in the last couple of sentences he wrecks it up. Why! It was perfectly fine till then. No wonder his short stories did not become as popular. It is almost a pattern now among all his short stories, so the reader can predict the trail of the stories. Didn't expect such a flaw in the otherwise master writer. Disappointed >:<
Jun 12, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read as part of "The Collected Works of Oscar Wilde"

(view spoiler)
Mistiemae1 Downs
Mar 11, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A beautifully rendered fairy tale, complete with archetypal figures and themes. There are a few veiled religious references, but no direct talk of a particular faith.

The Star Child is a wonderful addition to any fairy tale library, whether it be for pleasure or homeschooling.
Pagli Rajkonna
I liked it for most part .. It was having a really good happy ending but oh Oscar Wilde, he had to ruin it with how another evil king came along and blah blah .. Just don't read the last four lines of the story and you'll be fine ;)
Nov 08, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beautiful writing as usual with Wilde, but my god, the last sentence really seemed like out of spite from the author :P.
Jun 19, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Its a sweet story and pretty well paced.
Aug 06, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: middle readers
Fable of a child who learns through difficulties not to be proud and selfish. Some use of old language eg. "thee" and "thou". Dramatic illustrations - 'medievalish'.
Diciamo che l'ultima frase di questa brevissima favola la salva da essere la solita storia dove i buoni vincono e i cattivi vengono puniti.
Iara Rodarte
El final TT____TT
Satyabrata Mishra
Apr 25, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: recommendations
Once again Wilde weaves a masterpiece with threads of allegories and metaphors. What's the beauty that shines not through the inner light? The beauty of the heart; the clearest beauty of all.
K. Anna Hardy
I have arranged my thoughts on this short story into a haiku:

"Tempering one's ways,
Leaving little left of use.
Oh, but is it pure!"
Las ilustraciones son preciosas, las lecciones de Wilde y su marca están sumamente impresas en cada palabra, y sin más que decir Wilde es Wilde. Un maestro.
May 02, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A prodigal son story. Detailed and well-paced.
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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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