Thursday, 17. July 2008
Fairy Castle

This is the Cinderella drawing room. The floor was made in China years ago and is of rose quartz and jade. The chandelier hanging in the center of the room is gold, hung with real diamonds and emeralds and pearls. To the left you can see a little chess table just waiting for the wee folk to come and play. The painting on the wall is of Cinderella.

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This is the bedroom of the prince. This tells the story of the Russian Little Czar, Saltur. The story is carved in the furniture. The polar bear, of course, was shot by the prince. It's really an ermine skin, with a mouse's teeth. The sword standing by the wardrobe is Excalibur, King Arthur's sword.

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This is the Princess' Bedroom. The bed is the one that Sleeping Beauty slept in. The bedspread is the gold spider web that covered her for 100 years. The chairs are platinum and set with real diamonds and emeralds. The floor is made of mother of pearl.

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Experience the enchantment of a fairy’s dream home in Colleen Moore’s Fairy Castle.

This elaborate miniature house was created by silent film star Colleen Moore in the 1930s, and was donated to the Museum of Science and Industry in 1949.

It will delight you with its tiny treasures—including murals and paintings painted by Walt Disney himself; chandeliers adorned with real diamonds, emeralds and pearls; the tiniest bible ever to be written, dating back to 1840; and ancient statues more than 2,000 years old.


Colleen Moore's Fairy Castle
Category: Fairy Tales & Fables |




Monday, 07. April 2008
The Colors Of The World

A tale of acceptance and diversity, adapted from Native American legend ...

Enjoy!

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It is said that once the different colors of the world started to quarrel. All claimed they were the best, the most important, the most useful, the favorite:

GREEN said:
"Clearly I am the most important. I am the sign of life and of hope. I was chosen for grass, trees, leaves — without me, all animals would die. Look over the countryside and you will see that I am in the majority."

BLUE interrupted:
"You only think about the earth, but consider the sky and the sea. It is the water that is the basis of life and drawn up by the clouds from the deep sea. The sky gives space and peace and serenity. Without my peace, you would all be nothing.

YELLOW chuckled:
"You are all so serious. I bring laughter, gaiety, and warmth into the world. The sun is yellow, the moon is yellow, the stars are yellow. Every time you look at a sunflower, the whole world starts to smile. Without me there would be no fun."

ORANGE started next to blow her trumpet:
"I am the color of health and strength. I may be scarce, but I am precious for I serve the needs of human life. I carry the most important vitamins. Think of carrots, pumpkins, oranges, mangoes, and pawpaws. I don't hang around all the time, but when I fill the sky at sunrise or sunset, my beauty is so striking that no one gives another thought to any of you."

RED could stand it no longer. He shouted out:
"I am the ruler of all of you — I am blood — life's blood! I am the color of danger and of bravery. I am willing to fight for a cause. I bring fire into the blood. Without me, the earth would be as empty as the moon. I am the color of passion and of love, the red rose, the poinsettia and the poppy."

PURPLE rose up to full height and yelled with great pomp:
"I am the color of royalty and power. Kings, chiefs, and bishops have always chosen me for I am the sign of authority and wisdom. People do not question me — they listen and obey."

Finally,
INDIGO spoke, quietly, but with just as much determination:

"Think of me. I am the color of silence. You hardly notice me, but without me you all become superficial. I represent thought and reflection, twilight and deep water. You need me for balance and contrast, for prayer and inner peace."



And so the colors went on boasting, each convinced of his or her own superiority.
Their quarreling became louder and louder. Suddenly there was a startling flash of bright lightening — thunder rolled and boomed. Rain started to pour down relentlessly. The colors crouched down in fear, drawing close to one another for comfort.

In the midst of the clamor, rain began to speak:
"You foolish colors, fighting amongst yourselves, each trying to dominate the rest. Don't you know that you were each made for a special purpose, unique and different? Join hands with one another and come to me."

Doing as they were told, the colors united and joined hands.
The rain continued:

"From now on, when it rains, each of you will stretch across the sky in a great bow of color as a reminder that you can all live in peace. The rainbow is a sign of hope for tomorrow."



So, whenever a good rain washes the world, and a rainbow appears in the sky, let us remember to appreciate one another.


The legends of many cultures see the rainbow as a kind of bridge between heaven and earth.
One of the most beautiful sights in nature, the rainbow has become in western culture a symbol of renewed hope; something lucky to look upon.

The North American Catawba Indians of the Southeast and the Tlingit of the Northwest both regard it as the bridge between the living and the dead.
The Arawak Indians of South America recognize the rainbow as a fortunate sign if it's seen over the ocean, while tribes in northeastern Siberia see it as the tongue of the sun.

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Category: Fairy Tales & Fables |




Friday, 28. March 2008
SurLaLune Fairy Tales

What Is a Fairy Tale?

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Cinderella by Jessie Willcox Smith

I will state clearly that fairy tales do not have to be stories about fairies. Also, fairy tales are part of folklore, but folk tales are not necessarily fairy tales. The simplest way to explain this is to think of fairy tales as a subgenre of folklore along with myths and legends. If that is enough to answer your questions, stop here. It is as simple as this exercise is going to get.

The simpler question to answer is why these tales are called "fairy tales." It is from the influence of the women writers in the French Salons who dubbed their tales "contes de fees." The term was translated into English as "fairy tales." The name became so widely used due to the popularity of the French tales, that it began to be used to describe similar tales such as those by the Grimms and Hans Christian Andersen.


An Introduction to Fairy Tale Studies

Picked: "The Princess on the Pea"

Although similar tales existed before he included "The Princess on the Pea" in his Tales Told For Children (1835), Hans Christian Andersen is considered to be the populizer of the tale.

He also included traits which had not existed previously, primarily the actual sensitivity of the princess to the pea under the bedding.

Previous versions of the tale had the princess learning about the test from a sympathetic helper. She then passes the test with her cunning and foreknowledge. Andersen, on the other hand, liked the idea of a princess' true sensitivity and thus makes the princess an innocent victim of a bad night's sleep.

The tale has been interpreted in many books, illustrations and even for Broadway in the musical, Once Upon a Mattress, written by Mary Rodgers and Marshall Barer. The musical, now popular in high school revivals, was an original hit in 1959 starring Carol Burnett. It was revived for Broadway in 1997 starring Sarah Jessica Parker.

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Princess and the Pea by Edmund Dulac


A portal to the realm of fairy tale and folklore studies featuring 45 annotated fairy tales, including their histories, similar tales across cultures, and over 1,400 illustrations. Discover over 1,500 folk & fairy tales from around the world. And read some full text books!

SurLaLune Fairy Tales by Heidi Anne Heiner.
Colourful, informative and very dreamy!
Category: Fairy Tales & Fables |


Wednesday, 28. November 2007
The Man Who Planted Trees

If you like trees, this will fill your heart up. A film of great beauty and hope, this story is a remarkable parable for all ages and an inspiring testament to the power of one person.

The Man Who Planted Trees (French title L'homme qui plantait des arbres), also known as 'The Story of Elzéard Bouffier'; 'The Most Extraordinary Character I Ever Met'; and 'The Man who Planted Hope and Reaped Happiness' is an allegorical tale by French author Jean Giono, published in 1953.

The story begins in the year 1910 when this young man is undertaking a lone hiking trip through Provence, France, and into the Alps, enjoying the relatively unspoiled wilderness.
The narrator runs out of water in a treeless, desolate valley where only wild lavender grows and there is no trace of civilization except old, empty crumbling buildings. The narrator finds only a dried up well, but is saved by a middle-aged shepherd who takes him to a spring he knows of.
Curious about this man, and why he has chosen such a lonely life, the narrator stays with him for a time. The shepherd, after being widowed, has decided to restore the ruined ecosystem of the isolated and largely abandoned valley by single-handedly cultivating a forest, tree by tree. The shepherd, Elzéard Bouffier, makes holes in the ground with his curling pole and drops into the holes acorns that he has collected from many miles away ...

A true story? The story itself is so touching that many readers have believed that Elzéard Bouffier was a genuine historical figure and that the narrator of the story was a young Jean Giono himself, and that so the tale is part autobiographical. Sorry to disappoint you, but Elzéard Bouffier is a fictional person.

This Oscar winning, animated adaptation of the story was produced by Frédéric Back in 1987 and narrated by Christopher Plummer. You can also read the short story here.

A truely inspirational animation, a story of one person can change the world.
Worth watching twice ...
Duration 30 minutes.

Category: Fairy Tales & Fables | Movies & TV |


Thursday, 25. October 2007
The Fairytale Tarot

Using some of the world's most fascinating fairy tales with the symbolic, yet story-like pictures of the Tarot these images illuminate both the tales and the cards. But they do something more; they allow us to create new stories, new meanings, and that is certainly special. -- Rachel Pollack, writer and Tarot scholar

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Nine of Cups


The traditional suits have been used in this deck: Wands, Cups, Swords, and Coins; as well as the traditional court cards: Page, Knight, Queen, and King. The traditional titles are also carried through the Major Arcana. Below is a listing of the Major Arcana, and the fairy tales associated with them. From the book:

The Fool: The Poor Miller's Boy and The Little Cat
The Magician: The Storyteller at Fault
The High Priestess: Libuse
The Empress: Cinderella
The Emperor: The Emperor and the Nightingale
The Hierophant: The Five Wise Words of the Guru
The Lovers: Tatterhood
The Chariot: The Snow Queen
Strength: Beauty and the Beast
The Hermit: Bearskin
The Wheel of Fortune: Fortune and the Wood Cutter
Justice: The Juniper Tree
The Hanged Man: The Shifty Lad
Death: Godfather Death
Temperance: Water and Salt
The Devil: The Red Shoes
The Tower: Deirdre of the Sorrows
The Star: The Fairy of the Dawn
The Moon: The Nixy
The Sun: The Sunchild
Judgement: Snow White
The World: Many Fur

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King of Swords


The Fairytale Tarot is drawn from a wide range of fantastic, wise and wonderful magical stories. Favourites such as Hansel and Gretel, Cinderella and The Snow Queen are all here, together with stories that you may not know so well.

The Fairytale Tarot by by Alex Ukolov and Karen Mahony
Artwork by Irena Triskova
Beautiful!

Related Entries:
The Tarot of Prague
The Victorian Flower Oracle
Category: Fairy Tales & Fables | Tarot & Oracles |


Monday, 14. May 2007
The Romance of the Sun and the Moon

The Romance Of The Sun And The Moon - A Gnostic Tale

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The moon was alone one evening, shining in the midnight sky. Although she was surrounded by myriads of tiny, sparkly stars, she felt as if there was no one to understand her. She eagerly searched the skies for a friend, perhaps a meteor, with whom to discuss the joys and sorrows of her life. But there was nobody.

On the other side of the world, the sun yawned and awoke to shine his light upon the blue-green temples of God. He heard the call to worship, and saw the waves of people bowing and praying. He felt full of good will and charity towards the masses of God's servitors. Perhaps they were not holy, but at least they were faithful.


The moon stayed alone, suspended in the sky with none to touch her. A tiny star whispered to her of a great being, the sun, who brought joy and light to the world. She listened with interest, for it seemed that once, a long time ago, she had seen a being such as this. Beautiful as he was, the sun seemed always just beyond her reach. She would visit the places where he had been, and would always find that he had just left. Those who knew him spoke of his wonder and his glory, and she felt unworthy to be in his presence.

Now the sun was unaware of her yearning, for he was too busy making the crops grow and warming the world. Those who wished his light had only to look upward to heaven and he was there, beaming down upon them.

The moon continued to follow the sun, always coming nearer to him, always hearing that he had just left that portion of the sky, or was just over the next mountain range. Where before there was despair, now she was ever more hopeful, for she knew that she was approaching his presence.

She came closer and closer, until one glorious day came when she stood before him, naked and unafraid. The world looked up and saw only blackness - in the middle of the day. But the moon stood mid-way between the sun and the earth, and all of his glory was for her.

His light blotted out all of her loneliness, all of her pain, all of her past.

She stood bathed in wonder before him, and his light filled her soul.

She passed away from him full of light and joy, and though his light was too bright to remember, it was also too powerful to forget. She was dizzy with wonder. As time passed, it seemed that she once had been a being full of light, yet it was so long ago…

Such is the soul of man, dear one. It yearns of the glorious light of Truth, which destroys all loneliness and memory. The many lives of man are as many times as the moon see the sun - after each, nothing remains but a vague idea of a beauty one seen. And there is always the longing, and always the return.

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The Romance Of The Sun And The Moon - A Gnostic Tale.

See also The Frog and the Rose - A Mystical Tale.
(An Illustrated Children's Storybook)

Found at The Weaving of the Crystal River featuring also Poetry and Songs of Gods, Buddhas, Saints, Angels, and Seekers, and Hymns, Prayers, and Songs to the Ancient Gods.
Category: Fairy Tales & Fables | Poetry & Inspirations |


Saturday, 28. April 2007
Legends

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For over a thousand years, storytellers have spun tales of King Arthur of Britain, his Queen Guinevere, and the circle of his noble Knights. Why do these stories endure? How does an outlaw in Lincoln green with a taste for disguise and foolery survive for six hundred years to inspire disguised tricksters from Alta California to Revolutionary France to the farthest reaches of the galaxy?

How have these songs and stories twisted and turned over the centuries, and how have they defined our expectations of heroism, romance, and adventure?


This is Paula Kate Marmor's personal journey through the worlds of Robin Hood, King Arthur, D'Artagnan, and other swashbuckling characters of balladry, fiction, and film, from the shores of Avalon to the dungeons of Zenda.

Legends

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Among others Fairy Tales, Sagas & Sea-Kings, Paladins & Princes, King Arthur and Robin Hood.
Well done and much further links.
Category: Fairy Tales & Fables | Myths & Sagas |


Wednesday, 04. April 2007
Fairy Tales - In Images

"Once upon a time…"
Since man has dreamed, he has had a taste for stories.


He tells them to avoid boredom, recounts his fears and his desires. That is how myths were born, filled with gods, who later became monsters or fairies.

The myth of "Cupid and Psyche" has come down the centuries to inspire Beauty and the Beast. Marvellous stories also exist in India, Arabia as well as in China, Africa, etc … In reality, the themes and structures of tales are universal.

Medieval literature is full of myths and legends with marvellous themes. There was already a Beauty sleeping in the Arthurian legends. The story of the Fairy Mélusine, half-woman, half-dragon, has its place in the Lusignan family’s genealogy.


Fairy Tales - Birth of a Genre

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The fairy tale relies on a kind of magic pact signed between the story-teller and his listeners or readers. The latter accept to believe in the marvellous universe presented.

It is a world where animals talk, where distances and time vary, where all kinds of creatures appear, where everything, from the forest to the key, may have a magical dimension.

Obscure and dangerous, the forest is characteristic of the universe of tales. Place of initiation and ordeals par excellence, it confronts heroes and heroines with evil, death and the supernatural.


Fairy Tales - A Marvellous Universe


Most fairy tales call into play families of different configurations, which build up, transform themselves or decompose to result in a new organisation at the end of the story.

Siblings are torn apart, become rivals or are victims of complex curses.

More generally, tales reflect human existence and its relation with time, i.e. with death, through the portrayal of old age and of the succession of generations.


Fairy Tales - In the Heart of the Family

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"For a fairy tale to exist, there must be a threat – a threat against the hero’s physical or moral existence." specifies Bettelheim.

Most fairy tales begin with a separation, which takes on thousands of facets. It is often represented by the death of a parent: Cinderella’s or Snow White’s mother.

This initial ordeal, an essential step in becoming oneself for Bettelheim, an exploration of the unconscious for Marie-Louise von Franz, is often associated with impoverishment or humiliation which exacerbate the nostalgia for a lost paradise.


Fairy Tales - The Ordeal


Once included in books, fairy tales quickly found a place on the stage. In the Age of Enlightenment, as during the Second Empire, the marvellous and artifice lend themselves particularly well to theatre and to opera.

The popular success of fairy tales incited game and toy manufacturers to take over the theme: puzzles, lotto games, shadow theatres, dolls, tea sets and mechanical toys flooded the market.

Finally, fairies found their way into advertising media. As early as 1870, the owner of Le Bon Marché department store distributed to his customers’ children small theatres and images inspired by fairy tales.


Fairy Tales - In Everyday Life

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Category: Fairy Tales & Fables |


Wednesday, 03. January 2007
Moon Lore

Written just eighty-four years before Neil Armstrong stepped on the moon, this is a Victorian collection of moon lore: myths, folklore, superstitions and just plain whimsy from all lands. Although contemporary astronomers had fairly well wrapped up the question of whether there was water and air on the moon, Harley still suspected that the moon was inhabited. However, there was still much that was unknown about the moon until the first probes were crash-landed on it (for instance, whether the surface was covered with vast, deep layers of dust). So we shouldn't feel too smug, even though we've played golf there. The universe will continue to surprise us.

Moon Lore by Rev. Timothy Harley (1885).

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Category: Astrology & Astronomy | Books & Magazines | Fairy Tales & Fables |


Sunday, 24. December 2006
A Cosmic Christmas

Three aliens come to Earth to discover the true meaning of Christmas.

Enjoy this 22 minutes with this Canadian classic.

Category: Fairy Tales & Fables | Movies & TV |


Tuesday, 24. October 2006
Russian Fairy Tales

Enjoy the adventures of the mighty knight Ruslan, the beautiful "dead" princess, Ivan Tsarevich, Prince Gvidon and many many others in this collection of Russian fairy tales. For most of these stories, a long version (for those who want more details) and short version (for those want a summary) are available. Enjoy!

Russian Fairy Tales
by Tradestone Int'l. (English)

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Check out the wonderful and unique collection of Russian lacquer boxes. Themes: Fairies/Elves/Gnomes, Evil Characters, Mermaids, Religious and more. Visit the Gallery.

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The Stone Flower

A long time ago in one Urals village there lived a famous craftsman named Prokopyich. He made jewelry and other things from malachite and was renowned as the best gem carver in the Urals. The rulers ordered him to teach some boys his profession, but none of them was talented enough.

At the same time an orphan named Danila lived in the village. He was weak and couldn't work at the factory. But he was full of dreams and liked to observe nature.


Once he tried to help an old herdsman, but when he played his flute, the old shepherd felt asleep and several cattle were eaten by wolves. Danila and the herdsman were were severely punished.

A kind old woman took Danila into her house and healed him using many herbs and flowers. She taught him the lore of plants, and one day told him about the Stone Flower from Malachite Mountain. She told him it was the most beautiful flower in the world. But she also warned him, "Whoever finds that flower will never be happy."

Read more ...
Category: Fairy Tales & Fables | Products & Services |


Friday, 28. July 2006
The Folklore of the Orkney Islands

This website has many crosslinks. Or just follow the navigation on the upper right for the "Section Contents".

The Orkney Islands lie off the northern tip of Scotland where the North Sea and the Atlantic Ocean meet.

Orkney's folklore is a tangled web of interconnecting threads, combining elements of Norse, Scottish and Celtic myth.
Although on first glance it seems that the Norse lore is by far the most prevalent influence, this is not necessarily the case...

There is absolutely no doubt that the impact of our Norse predecessors' arrival on the islands was considerable.

Each longship that pulled into Orkney waters brought not only the settlers but also their distinct language, customs, traditions and beliefs.

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These people carried with them epic tales of giants, dwarfs, trolls and numerous other magical creatures from their homelands. As the generations passed, with each retelling these creatures were transplanted from the dramatic glaciars, mountains and fjords of Scandinavia into the low, rolling hills of the Orcadian landscape.

The Folklore of the Orkney Islands (English)

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The situation surrounding Orcadian fairy lore is somewhat complex.

Generally speaking, the term "fairy folk" was simply a blanket term used to refer to a wide range of supernatural creatures. Of these, the trows were the most common.

To the Orcadians of yesteryear there was no distinction between the terms "trow" and "fairy". So it is not uncommon to encounter what is obviously the same tale, or legend, with a "trow" in one instance, but a "fairy" in the next.

So does Orkney's "fairy" lore simply recount the exploits of the islands' trows?

In most cases, yes.


The Fairy Folk in Orkney Lore (English)


What is a Trow?

The tales surrounding the trows are probably the best known, and widespread, element of Orkney folklore.

In many cases practically indistinguishable from the fairy folklore found throughout Northern Europe, the archetypal trow was an ugly, mischievous, little creature that resided in the ancient mounds scattered across Orkney.

Although some tales declared that a trow could pass for a human - although usually old, wizened or deformed, in general, they were said to be short, ugly, stunted creatures, considerably smaller than a man.

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The Trows (English)
Category: Faeries & Nature Spirits | Fairy Tales & Fables |


Sunday, 18. June 2006
The Boy and the King

This is an animated story of Obaid, a boy who tries to teach his people to worship Allah alone, but is opposed by a powerful and arrogant king. While Obaid is the apprentice of an evil sorcerer, he learns about the oneness of God from a pious monk. The boy struggles to teach this truth to others, but his wicked king tries desperately to kill him.

The story is taken from an authentic narration of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) which explains the reference to ‘The People of the Ditch’ (Ashab-ul-Ukhdood’) in Surah Burooj (Qur’an 85:4).



This streaming video takes 1 hour 28 minutes.

Produced by Ella Film, Turkey. English Version by Astrolabe Pictures, USA.
Category: Fairy Tales & Fables | Monks & Ascets | Movies & TV |


Saturday, 13. May 2006
Stories from Hans Andersen, by Hans Christian Andersen

Far out at sea the water is as blue as the bluest cornflower, and as clear as the clearest crystal; but it is very deep, too deep for any cable to fathom, and if many steeples were piled on the top of one another they would not reach from the bed of the sea to the surface of the water. It is down there that the Mermen live.

Now don't imagine that there are only bare white sands at the bottom; oh no! the most wonderful trees and plants grow there, with such flexible stalks and leaves, that at the slightest motion of the water they move just as if they were alive. All the fish, big and little, glide among the branches just as, up here, birds glide through the air. The palace of the Merman King lies in the very deepest part; its walls are of coral and the long pointed windows of the clearest amber, but the roof is made of mussel shells which open and shut with the lapping of the water. This has a lovely effect, for there are gleaming pearls in every shell, any one of which would be the pride of a queen's crown ...
more here

CONTENTS:
• THE SNOW QUEEN
• THE NIGHTINGALE
• THE REAL PRINCESS
• THE GARDEN OF PARADISE
• THE MERMAID
• THE EMPEROR'S NEW
CLOTHES
• THE WIND'S TALE

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Project Gutenberg's Stories from Hans Andersen, by Hans Christian Andersen.
With beautiful illustrations by Edmund Dulac.
Category: Fairy Tales & Fables |


Saturday, 18. March 2006
Alice In Wonderland - Extraordinary

This is Alice in Wonderland as you've never ever seen it.

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This also happens to be one howlingly funny tale, that continues to enchant readers nearly 140 years after it was first written. Replete with the complete works of NINE of the original 19th century and early 20th century illustrators, plus two contemporary illustrators. This tale also has a marvelous Story Background section, called The Making of Alice In Wonderland. Did you know, for example, that the Flamingo Alice used as a mallet in the croquet game was originally an Ostrich? And by the way, has anyone ever explained to you the best way to suppress the testimony of a witness during a court proceeding? No? Well then...

Alice In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. (English)


Reading time - 12 Chapters, figure 10 to 15 minutes per chapter.

Tip: Viewing the fascinating background page first will enhance your enjoyment of this tale.

This is a very modern Flash-Animation of this tale:
J. Otto Seibold's Alice In Wonderland. (all languages)


Leider nicht illustriert, aber der ganze Text auf deutsch:

Alice's Abenteuer im Wunderland von Lewis Carroll, aus dem Englischen von Antonie Zimmermann. (German)

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Category: Fairy Tales & Fables |


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