Cinderella: Three Hundred and Forty-five Variants of Cinderella, Catskin, and Cap O' Rushes, abstracted and tabulated UNDER CONSTRUCTION | Annotated Tale

91. Cendrillon

Perrault, Contes du Temps passé. 1697.



Ill-treated heroine (by step-mother and step-sisters)--Menial--Hearth-abode--Fairy godmother--Transformation of pumpkin, mice, rats, lizard, and heroine's rags--Magic dresses-Meeting-place (ball)--Three-fold flight--Heroine must leave ball before midnight, when fairy equipage is re-transformed--Lost shoe-- Shoe marriage test--Happy marriage.


(1) Widower with one daughter, good and amiable, marries widow with two daughters, proud and ill-tempered like herself. Stepmother, jealous of beautiful stepdaughter, makes her do all rough work and sleep in garret, whilst her own daughters live luxuriously. Stepdaughter makes no complaint, and after work sits in chimney-corner amongst the ashes; hence is generally called Cucendron, but by younger stepsister, who is less cruel to her, Cendrillon.-- (2) King's son gives ball, and invites stepsisters. Cendrillon helps them dress whilst they tease her, asking if she would not like to go too. When they have started, Cendrillon's fairy-godmother appears, finds her crying, and say-s she shall go to ball. Sends her to garden to get pumpkin, hollows it out, and, striking it with wand, changes it into beautiful gilded coach. Finds mouse-trap with six live mice, which she transforms to splendid horses. Cendrillon suggests a rat for coachman; finds three in trap, and, selecting one with fine beard, godmother transforms it. Sends Cendrillon to find six lizards behind watering and changes them to footmen, who get up behind chariot. Transforms Cendrillon's rags to splendid robe of gold and silver trimmed with jewels, gives her pair of glass slippers, and starts her to ball, with warning to leave before midnight, when chariot, horses, footmen, all will resume original forms, and her finery become rags. Cendrillon promises to obey injunction. Prince, informed of arrival of unknown grand princess, hastens to receive her. Dancing ceases, music stops as she enters ballroom; her beauty amazes all. Prince dances with her and gives her fruit; she sits by stepsisters, and shares it with them. Meanwhile a quarter-to-twelve strikes; Cendrillon bows to company and disappears. Returns to thank godmother, and asks to go next day, as prince had begged her. Stepsisters return; Cendrillon opens door to them, feigning sleepiness. They tell her of beautiful princess, so gracious to them, and whose name prince is so eager to discover.-- (3) They go next day to ball; Cendrillon appears in even greater splendour. In prince's company be forgets godmother's injunction tilt first stroke of midnight sounds, when she rushes off, and prince cannot overtake her. She drops a glass shoe, which he picks up. Cendrillon reaches home breathless, without chariot or footmen, and clad in rags, only retaining one glass shoe. Palace guards are questioned about departure of princess, but have seen no one save poor, ill-clad girl. Stepsisters return; Cendrillon asks about princess, and hears of prince's love for her, and his treasuring of glass slipper.-- (4) Prince proclaims that he will marry whomsoever it will fit. Princesses, duchesses, all the court try it in vain. Stepsisters cannot succeed. Watching them, Cendrillon asks to be allowed a trial, but they mock at her. Gentleman-in-waiting having charge of shoe bids Cendrillon sit down, and slips it on her foot. She draws fellow-slipper from pocket, and puts it on. Godmother appears and transforms her clothes, when stepsisters, recognising the beauty of the ball, fall at her feet and ask pardon for ill-treatment.-- (5) Cendrillon forgives them; is conducted to prince, whom she weds; takes stepsisters to live at palace, and finds them husbands.

Bibliographic Information

Tale Title: 91. Cendrillon
Tale Author/Editor: Perrault, Charles
Book Title: Cinderella: Three Hundred and Forty-five Variants of Cinderella, Catskin, and Cap O' Rushes, abstracted and tabulated UNDER CONSTRUCTION
Book Author/Editor: Cox, Marian Roalfe
Publisher: David Nutt for the Folklore Society
Publication City: London
Year of Publication: 1893
Country of Origin: France
Classification: ATU 510A: Cinderella

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