Interesting and little known facts about fairy tales

Interesting and little known facts about fairy tales
Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria (southern Germany) is the castle on which Disney
based his castles at Disney Land and Disney World.
owner, King Ludwig II of Bavaria was born in 1845,
He ate alone, but requested his table be set for four, because he invited imaginary
guests to dinner. Once he had his favorite horse dine with him!
put tape on a servant's head so his brains would not fall out,
His Cabinet had him declared insane. He was arrested at Neuschwanstein Castle and
died mysteriously a few days later while taking a walk with his doctor. Both men
were found drowned in a shallow lake nearby. The official theory is that Ludwig
strangled the doctor and then drowned himself, but to this day no one knows for
The Bavarian people loved Ludwig dearly (and do to this day), referring to him as
their "fairy tale king." The government officials were decidedly less fond of him,
calling him "mad King Ludwig.”
His bed is stunning - it has so much carved woodworking that it took 17
woodworkers 4 1/2 years to make it!
There is an artificial cave built into the castle between the living room and the study.
Over 6000 people visit Neuschwanstein each day.
Goldilocks is a recent addition to the story of The Three Bears. Earlier versions of the
story usually featured an old hag, a woman with silver hair, instead of the precocious
golden haired child we know so well today.
Charles Dickens claimed his first love was Little Red Riding Hood.
The famous kiss in "The Frog King" was added by Edward Taylor when he translated the
tale from the Grimms' German to English. The original German tale told of the spell being
broken when the princess threw the frog against a wall in her disgust.
In recent years, The Story of the Three Little Pigs has been rewritten numerous times for
children, often reversing the story to make the wolf the sympathetic character. One of
the most popular versions is "The True Story of the Three Little Pigs" by Jon Scieszka,
illustrated by Lane Smith.
Cinderella's "glass slipper" was probably originally a "fur slipper." The fur being
mistranslated to glass. Cinderella's teeny feet were probably a remnant of a Chinese
version and Chinese foot binding traditions.
In the earlier French versions of Red Riding Hood, she escapes the wolf by claiming to
need to go the bathroom.
There are 500 variants of Cinderella in Europe alone.
Sleeping Beauty is not awakened by a simple kiss from the prince, but awakened by the
twins she gives birth to after the prince has been there and left again.
Another fact is that the story doesn't end with her waking up, it goes on to recount how
the prince takes her home to his ogress mother, is called away by war, whereupon the
ogress orders her cook to kill and roast her daughter-in-law and her two children.
Another fact: Snow White's jealous step-mother was originally her own mother. The
Brothers Grimm changed her to a step-mother in later publications of the story in order
to make it slightly less horrific. Ditto for Hansel and Gretel.
In the Walt Disney cartoon version of Snow White, the prince falls in love with Snow
White at the beginning of the story, and then comes to save her with a kiss at the end.
But in the older folk tale versions, the prince has never met Snow White before when he
encounters the little men carrying her dead body through the forest. He finds her so
beautiful, even in death, that he demands that they give the body to him. She then
wakes by pure accident: one of the servants bearing the coffin away stumbles, dislodging
the poisoned apple from her mouth. The prince declares his love for her, and she marries
him, despite the fact that they are complete strangers to each other!
In Lapland versions of Snow White, the little men don't put Snow White's body in a glass
coffin, but drape it over the antlers of a reindeer.
In Japanese versions of Cinderella, she's helped by a talking carp (goldfish), not a fairy
godmother. In Scottish versions, it's a cow (who speaks in her dead mother's voice).
In Fernand Noizere's version of Beauty and the Beast, 1909, Beauty is outraged when he
makes his final transformation back into a man. "You should have warned me!" she cries.
"Here I was smitten by an exceptional being, and all of a sudden my fiancé becomes an
ordinary, distinguished man!"
Here is one about Marie-Catherine d'Aulnoy ("The White Cat, "The Yellow Dwarf", etc):
She tried to get rid of her husband by accusing him of treason against the king. It didn't
work and she barely escaped France; her male compatriots in the scheme were executed.
She may also have been a spy for France while abroad.