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KS3 English - Fairy tales: What's their story?: The Princess and the Pea

The Princess and the Pea

The Princess And The Pea

On this page you can find out more about the story of The Princess and the Pea.

The Story of The Princess and the Pea

You can read Hans Christian Andersen's version of The Princess and the Pea on the SurLaLune website.

History of The Princess and the Pea

The SurLaLune website includes lots of information about The Princess and the Pea, including details of the history of the story. You may find useful information here for your Princess and the Pea timeline.

Princess and the Pea and similar stories

This fairy tale website, compiled by the University of Pittsburgh, includes Hans Christian Andersen's version of the Princess and the Pea. You can also find a number of fairy tales which are similar to the Princess and the Pea story.

 

You may find useful information here for your Princess and the Pea timeline.

Take part in our 'morals' poll...

Different people see different moral messages in the Princess and the Pea tale, below are a few examples.

Think about the story of the Princess and the Pea, which of these do you think is the main moral lesson for this story?

Small things can make a big difference

 

Don't judge people on the wrong things

Take part in our 'morals' poll...
Small things can make a big difference - sometimes we think small things won't make much of an impact but in this story the small pea makes a big difference.: 29 votes (33.33%)
Don't judge a person on their appearance - the girl turns up looking bedraggled so the queen thinks she can't be a princess.: 52 votes (59.77%)
Don't judge people on the wrong things - the queen judges whether the girl is a princess by whether she has tender skin but anyone could have tender skin.: 6 votes (6.9%)
Total Votes: 87

Listen to the Story of the Princess and the Pea

Elements of the Story

As explained in the Conventions of fairy tales section, a fairy story always includes a number of important elements. In the story of Princess and the Pea the elements include:

 

GOOD CHARACTERS

In the Princess and the Pea story the good character is the princess character.

 

 

THE BADDY

Do you think there is a bad character in this story?  Do you think the queen is a baddy?

 

SUPPORTING CHARACTERS

Can you think of any supporting characters in this story?

 

MAGIC

Do you think there is any magic in this story?

 

OBSTACLE OR TASK

A fairy tale usually includes an obstacle or task which the characters must tackle with to reach their happy ending.  In this story the test is whether the princess can sleep in the bed with the pea.

 

HAPPILY EVER AFTER

The Princess passes the test set by the queen so the prince and princess are able to marry and they live happily ever after...

 

MORAL

There are several morals that can be derived from "The Princess and the Pea." However, the most popular one is that people should not judge others based on their appearances. Some of the other morals of this fairy tale are that first impressions are not always correct and that the smallest of things can make a difference.

 

What do you think is the moral message of the Princess and the Pea story?  Read some suggestions in the left hand column and then vote for the moral which you think is the main lesson of this tale.  When you have voted, have a look and see what other people think.