Hans Christian Andersen

Hans Christian Andersen was born April 2nd, 1805 in Odense. He was born into a poor family. His father was a shoemaker, and his mother did not have a job. Even though they did not have much Hans was happy for growing up next to a father who recognized his love for adventures and stories. Since he was a boy, his father told him many stories and helped him build a puppet theater.

His life got hard when his father died. His mother had to clean other people’s laundry to provide food, shelter and clothes for herself and her son. Even though she wanted to send him to a school to study something he wanted to go into a big city and make something out of himself.

He had only 14 years when he came to Copenhagen. He lived in an attic and worked a lot to make it. He even danced for a short time. When he was 17, he decided to go to school, so he sat in school with 12-years old. He even went to a university.

He wrote and studied at the same time. He wrote many fairy tales and "The Ugly Duckling" was considered to contain elements of his life. Some of his other famous fairy tales are: "The little Mermaid", "The Emperor’s New Clothes", "The Snow Queen"…

He died in Copenhagen August 4th, 1875.

The Nightingale

"The Nightingale" is a fairytale with an unexpected ending. Even though we are used to hearing happy endings, this one is a bit different especially compared to other fairytales by Andersen. It begins by a China’s emperor hearing about a magnificent bird, a little nightingale with a beautiful voice. The emperor sent his minister to find it and bring it to him. The nightingale’s voice … [Read more...]

The Brave Tin Soldier

This is one of the most unusual fairytales by Andersen. It doesn’t have a happy ending and the main characters suffer a tragic "death".  It talks about the love between a one-legged soldier, who represents those who are different, and a beautiful paper ballerina. The soldier met different characters from the children’s room and in the end, despite all the temptations, he managed to … [Read more...]

The Swineherd

The fairytale about the princess and the swineherd is actually a story about unrequited love. The swineherd, who was actually a prince, fell in love with the young princess and he had sent her two gifts that she didn’t like. He decided to dress up as a poor young man so he could get a job at her father’s kingdom. When he got settled in a small room he started making all kinds of … [Read more...]

The Little Match Girl

"The Little Match Girl" is a sad story about a miserable young girl that touched the heart of many readers. The story begins in a cold winter night in which the snow never stopped. It was a real, rough and cold dinner. It wasn’t just any kind of day, it was the last day before New Year. Even thought that day was well known for making parties and having fun the atmosphere was sad. The … [Read more...]

The Snow Queen

Fairytales are read by everyone because they introduce the reader to the world of magic in a simple way. They talk about human characteristics, love and friendship. This story is about love between friends. A little girl named Gerda was getting ready to find her friend Kai who disappeared. She crossed forests, mountains and hills to come to the Snow Kingdom and bring her friend back … [Read more...]

The Little Mermaid

Somewhere far away on the sea surface the water was beautiful, clear, blue but very deep. However deep or far away may the surface be it does not mean there is only sand below. The sea hides over there magical trees, herbs, fishes that are big and small. The spot where the sea is the deepest you can find a magnificent castle where the king of the underwater world lives. The walls are … [Read more...]

The Ugly Duckling

"The Ugly Duckling" is a story about the troubles and sufferings of a young swan that got hatched from an egg in a duck’s nest. He was marked as different and there all of his troubles started. He was humiliated in many ways and abused which ended up with him not trusting himself. He thought that he was worthless and he left the ducks. There is an obvious link between the people … [Read more...]

The Emperor’s New Clothes

"The Emperor's new clothes" is a fun story about human vanity and the fear of truth, wisdom, stupidity, naivety and incompetence. It reminds us of the never-ending human desire for power, material things and good position in the society. The main starter in the story is the Emperor’s weakest spot and that is clothes. The other starters of the plot are the conmen who wanted to take … [Read more...]

Thumbelina

"Thumbelina" is no ordinary girl. She is a cute little creature that came alive by coming out of a seed. She was special and her story starts with a woman that could not have any children. Once upon a time a woman couldn’t stay pregnant and she was very sad about that. Everything changed on the day she welcomed an old lady into her home. When she was going away she gave the woman a … [Read more...]

The Princess and the Pea

"The Princess and the Pea" is a short but fascinating tale written by the famous Hans Christian Andersen. It talks about a prince who wanted to marry a real princess. Luck smiled upon him and sent the girl that claimed she is precisely that, right to his front door. She knocked at the door of the castle, all wet from the rain and lost. Queen presented to the princess one test which … [Read more...]