Hans Christian Andersen has become most famous for his fairy tales read by children around the world. He has written over 150 children’s stories, what makes him one of the world’s most significant writers. Many of his works have become the inspiration for numerous animated films, theatrical works, ballet, paintings and sculptures.
But Andersen’s fairy tales have not always been widely known and recognized. Critics and audience did not pay too much attention to his fairy tales and felt that they were of little value. At first, he was retelling stories, but in time he started creating hos own works. His fairy tales blend legends, fiction and myth with the real world in the best possible way.
The Little Mermaid is a moving story about a mermaid who wanted to become human all her life. From a young age, she was drawn to the human world and everything in it. When she was 15, she fell in love with a beautiful young man who she had saved from drowning, and more than anything, she wanted him to fall in love with her as well.
Place: under the sea, in the castle
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 covered with corals and the roof is made out of seashells that open and close how the current flows.
The king was a widower for a long time so his mother helped him run the castle. She was a smart woman, proud of her inheritance.
She loved her granddaughters above all and she had 6 of them. The youngest one was the prettiest one. She had beautiful skin and blue eyes. They spent most of their time in the garden where they had their special place and the youngest one circled her so that it would remind her of the sun.
The little mermaid was an unordinary girl that was shy, unlike her sisters, and she loved a marble statue of a boy that sunk to the bottom after a shipwreck. The princess planted a plant near the statue and it complimented it perfectly.
The biggest joy for her were the news that came from the world on the surface, the news about people. Her grandma always told her stories about people their habits, ships and cities. The little mermaid found the flowers that smelled, the green trees and the birds most interesting.
Their grandma promised them that they will be able to come out to the surface and observe the ships from a rock. They always told stories about what they saw to one another. Nobody wanted to get to know the outer world more than the youngest. The first one told how she lied on the sand and the other one how she saw the sunset.
The third sister was brave and she started swimming near by the river and saw beautiful castles and hills. The fourth one wasn’t all that brave and the fifth one want out during the winter so she saw the world from an iceberg.
When the little mermaid turned 15 she could finally enjoy the fresh air and she observed a ship that hosted a party. She saw a young man with big black eyes. The party was for his birthday.
The time passed by and the Little Mermaid observed the party until a storm came by. The waves were getting bigger and bigger and people were panicking. Unfortunately the prince fell into the sea and The Little Mermaid rushed to save him so he wouldn’t drown.
She got him to land, and placed him near a church where she kissed him and rushed to the sea because somebody was coming. Soon he was surrounded by beautiful girls and he did not know who saved him so he smiled to all of them and that made the Little Mermaid sad. She got sadder as the days passed by and soon she told her sisters everything. They helped her find the prince so she could observe him every day.
She was getting attracted to the human life and even though her grandma tried to explain that her undersea life is amazing she craved the land. She decided to search for help at an old witch’s house that was guarded by snakes. Even though she was afraid she kept on going with her plan.
The witch spoke to the Mermaid and told her she came in the right time because she has the potion for her. Unfortunately the witch did not work for free. Mermaid would get her legs but with every step she’ll take she will feel an enormous pain and she has to convince the prince that she is the one for him because if she fails she will turn into foam. Also the witch wanted her voice that was the prettiest in the whole undersea world. The little Mermaid agreed and lost her voice.
After she came to land she drank the potion and she felt a lot of pain, passed out and after she woke up the prince was next to her. The problem was she couldn’t introduce herself to him. He helped her get up and took her to the castle where she got the prettiest dresses. Every day they were entertained by some girls but neither one of them had a pretty voice as The little Mermaid.
One night she saw hr sisters and she talked to them. They were really sad that she left them and in the distance she saw her grandma and dad. The prince loved her more and more every day but not as a future wife but as a child. He admitted to her that he likes her because she reminded him of a girl that saved him.
One day she went to another castle with the prince. Even though he spent a lot of time talking to the princess he told her that he would never get married to her because he needs the girl that saved him.
Everything changed when a new princess arrived. She reminded him so much of the girl who saved him that he decided to marry her. The mermaid new she would die the next day so she decided to spend her last night dancing on the boat. She saw her sisters that cut their hairs. They told her that they gave their hair to the witch so that she wouldn’t have to die the next day. She got a knife and she was supposed to stab the prince with it and as soon as his blood would drop onto her feet she would turn into a mermaid and she would live for 300 years.
When she approached the prince she wasn’t strong enough to kill him so she threw away the knife and jumped into the sea. She was waiting for her death. She talked to the fairies and they told her that a mermaid can only be immortal if she finds her soul mate. The little Mermaid finally raised to the world of air ghosts, saw the prince for the last time and went towards the clouds.
Charachters: The Little Mermaid, sisters, prince, witch
Hans Christian Andersen Biography
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.
Book reports from Hans Christian Andersen
- The Brave Tin Soldier
- The Emperor’s New Clothes
- The Little Match Girl
- The Little Mermaid
- The Nightingale
- The Princess and the Pea
- The Snow Queen
- The Swineherd
- The Ugly Duckling