[[quoteright:320:[[Literature/VasilissaTheBeautiful http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/BabaYagaHut.JPG]]]]
[[caption-width-right:320:[-Outside Literature/BabaYaga's Hut, in a Russian FairyTale.-] ]]

->''"Fairy tales do not give the child the idea of the evil or the ugly; that is in the child already because it is in the world already. What fairy tales give the child is his first clear idea of the possible defeat of evil.\\
The baby has known the dragon intimately ever since he had an imagination. What the fairy tale provides for him is a St George to kill the dragon."''
-->--'''Creator/GKChesterton'''

%% One quote is sufficient. Please place additional entries on the quotes tab.

A story which depicts a fantastic sequence of events. Often, fairy tales include creatures from folklore such as goblins, [[WickedWitch witches]], and dragons. Fairy tales usually take place "{{once upon a time}}", with few (if any) references to real people, places or events.

Orally told fairy tales are told in extremely spare and laconic style. Even the [[PimpedOutDress fancy dresses]] the heroine [[SheCleansUpNicely wears to a ball]] are discussed briefly; "[[RuleOfThree three dresses]], one as golden as the sun, one as silvery as the moon, and one as bright as the stars" and the story goes on. Likewise, characters are defined by their actions. Even when motives are provided (which is only for human characters), they are short and simple: the heroine is out to find her fortune; the hero wants to marry the princess; the WickedStepmother is {{greed}}y and doesn't want her stepchild to have an inheritance, or [[GreenEyedMonster envious]] of her beauty, or if she has a stepson, destroy his wife; the [[FakeUltimateHero false hero]] wants to marry the princess; the king falls in love with the strange woman he meets in the woods because of her beauty. And motives may not be; in [[Creator/TheBrothersGrimm the Grimms']] "Literature/TheTwelveDancingPrincesses", we never find out why the princesses are going to the nightly dances, and indeed never discover whether they are doing so voluntarily or not.

"Fairy tale" is often used in modern times to depict an idealized romance or ending, although many classic fairy tales are much darker than many people realize. Heroes may be the victims of [[FamilyUnfriendlyViolence such violence]] as having hands chopped off or eyes gouged out; at the end of the story, villains may be [[FamilyUnfriendlyDeath disposed of]] by such methods as having them wear red-hot shoes and dance until they die, or putting them in a barrel lined with nails and having a horse drag it until they die. The spare style helps minimize the impact, as it can deal with the violence briefly and without gory detail, but even so many fairy tales have produced NightmareFuel. In some cases, this is intentional, to ScareEmStraight.

Fairy tales are found in cultures all over the earth. Many tale types have wide-spread variants. However, only a tiny handful of them are widely known in modern culture. Consequently, when a writer goes to rewrite a fairy tale into FracturedFairyTale, with parody or subversion, it generally invokes one of that handful. For instance, the FairyGodmother is a relatively rare figure in fairy tales, but having featured in "Literature/{{Cinderella}}" and "Literature/SleepingBeauty", is epidemic in the FracturedFairyTale. Even [[TwiceToldTale retellings]] that do not parody the fairy tales generally stick to the best known.

We know that fairy tales are OlderThanDirt because clearly recognizable fairy tales turn up, occasionally, in written form as far back as there has been writing. The story of Jason and Medea is a form of "The girl helps the hero flee" like ''Literature/TheWhiteDove''; a whole cycle of ChivalricRomance are tales of "The girl without hands" like ''Literature/TheOneHandedGirl''. However, many of these are also clearly written in literary form, and the others may also be far removed from the orally told tales of their time. Nor were they distinguished from other types of story. Giambattista Basile's ''The Pentamerone'' in 1634 (or so) was the first collection to contain only what we would recognize as fairy tales, but heavily rewritten into a literary style. Creator/TheBrothersGrimm were the first to even try to save the folk version, and all tales collected from the oral tradition post-date theirs.

Fairy tales were originally intended for all ages, but for a long period of time, they were only written or presented as children's stories. Disney is rather famous for adapting fairy tales into [[TheMovie movie]] [[TheMusical musicals]], [[{{Disneyfication}} often with changes to make them more light-hearted]]. Writers who seek to restore fairy tales to their original intensity may intensify it to the point of {{Grimmification}}.

Very few fairy tales actually feature [[OurFairiesAreDifferent fairies]]; even those European countries with a developed [[TheFairFolk fairy folklore]] preferred to use {{Talking Animal}}s instead. The name of the genre can be traced to Madame d'Aulnoy's ''Les Contes de Fées'', which appeared only after literary fairy tales became all the rage. Folklorists have made valiant attempts to give the category more accurate names, such as "wonder tale", or the Grimms' original term "household tale" or ''Märchen'', but the name sticks. "Folk tales" include them, but also other tales.

Several extremely popular tales such as [[Creator/CharlesPerrault Perrault]]'s "Cinderella" and "Sleeping Beauty" did feature fairies, helping give weight to the name, while others like "Literature/{{Rumpelstiltskin}}" and "Literature/KateCrackernuts" alluded to [[OurFairiesAreDifferent a more sinister kind]] of [[TheFairFolk folkloric fairies]]. On the other hand, Perrault's "Cinderella" is an odd-ball; normally the Cinderella figure is helped by [[OurGhostsAreDifferent her dead mother]], and "Sleeping Beauty" is as likely to be a victim of prophecy as a {{curse}}). Many, such as "Literature/{{Rapunzel}}", "Literature/PussInBoots", "Literature/HanselAndGretel", and "Literature/SnowWhite", contain no such figures. Some, like "Literature/TheEmperorsNewClothes" contain no magic of any kind.

See also FairyTaleTropes for a list of tropes common to fairy tales and [[ProppsFunctionsOfFolktales Propp's Functions of Folktales]]. Not to be confused with the similarly-named manga ''Manga/FairyTail''.

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[[index]]
[[header:Popular fairy tale authors, collectors, and compilers include:]]

* Gianfrancesco Straparola -- author of the first notable collection of European (specifically, Italian) fairy tales, ''The Facetious Nights of Straparola'' (1550/53)
* Giambattista Basile -- ''The Pentamerone'' (1634/36); the first collection solely of fairy tales
* Creator/CharlesPerrault -- ''Tales of Mother Goose'' (1697)
* Madame d'Aulnoy -- coined the term "fairy tale" with her ''Les Contes des Fées'' (1697/98)
* Creator/TheBrothersGrimm -- ''Children's and Household Tales'' (1812)
* Creator/HansChristianAndersen -- the maybe most famous author of literary fairy tales (''Fairy Tales Told for Children'' and ''New Fairy Tales'', 1835-44)
* Creator/AsbjornsenAndMoe -- ''Norwegian Folktales'' (1842/43)
* Creator/AlexanderAfanasyev -- ''Russian Fairy Tales'', 8 volumes (1855-67)
* Creator/AndrewLang -- ''Colored Fairy Books'', 12 volumes (1889-1910)
* Creator/JosephJacobs -- ''Fairy Tales'', 5 volumes (1890-1916)
* Creator/AngelaCarter -- ''Literature/TheBloodyChamber'' (1979)
[[/index]]

[[header:Fairy Tale analysis includes:]]
* ''[[TheHerosJourney The Hero with a Thousand Faces]]'' - Joseph Campbell
* ''[[TheHerosJourney The Writer's Journey]]'' - Christopher Vogler
* ''[[ProppsFunctionsOfFolktales The Morphology of the Folktale]]'' - Vladimir Propp
* ''Literature/OnFairyStories'' - Creator/JRRTolkien
* The Aarne-Thompson folktale classification system, an attempt to catalogue every folktale plot there is.
[[index]]
[[header:Traditional fairy tales or fairy tale characters:]]
* "Literature/AdalminasPearl"
* ''Literature/ArabianNights''
** "Literature/{{Aladdin}}"
** "Literature/AliBabaAndTheFortyThieves"
* "Literature/AraTheHandsome"
* The Literature/BabaYaga fairy tales
* "Literature/{{Bearskin}}"
* "Literature/BeautyAndTheBeast"
* "Literature/TheBlackThiefAndTheKnightOfTheGlen"
* "Literature/{{Bluebeard}}"
* "Literature/TheBlueMountains"
* "Literature/BootsWhoMadeThePrincessSayThatsAStory"
* "Literature/TheBraveLittleTailor"
* "Literature/TheBigFancyHouse"
* "Literature/TheBremenTownMusicians"
* "Literature/BrotherAndSister"
* "Literature/TheBrownBearOfTheGreenGlen "
* "Literature/CapORushes"
* "Literature/CatherineAndHerFate"
* "Literature/TheCatOnTheDovrefell"
* "Literature/{{Catskin}}"
* "Literature/ChildeRowland"
* "Literature/{{Cinderella}}"
** "Literature/YehShen"
** "Literature/{{Rhodopis}}"
* "Literature/TheDancingWaterTheSingingAppleAndTheSpeakingBird"
* "Literature/DavidOfSasun"
* "Literature/DickWhittingtonAndHisCat"
* "Literature/{{Donkeyskin}}"
* "Literature/EastOfTheSunAndWestOfTheMoon"
* "Literature/TheElvesAndTheCobbler"
* "Literature/FairBrow"
* "Literature/TheFamousFlowerOfServingMen"
* "Literature/TheFeatherOfFinistTheFalcon"
* "Literature/TheFireBirdTheHorseOfPowerAndThePrincessVasilissa"
* "Literature/TheFishermanAndHisWife"
* "Literature/TheFrogPrince"
* "Literature/TheGiantWhoHadNoHeartInHisBody"
* "Literature/TheGingerbreadMan"
* "Literature/TheGoldenGoose"
* "Literature/{{Goldilocks}}"
* "Literature/TheGooseGirl"
* "Literature/TheGratefulBeasts"
* "Literature/HanselAndGretel"
* "Literature/HopOMyThumb"
* "Literature/IronHans"
* "Literature/JackAndTheBeanstalk"
* "Literature/JackTheGiantKiller" (predecessor to "Jack and the Beanstalk" and itself a variation of "Literature/TheBraveLittleTailor")
* "Literature/JesperWhoHerdedTheHares"
* "Literature/TheJezinkas"
* "Literature/KateCrackernuts"
* "Literature/TheKingWhoWouldBeStrongerThanFate"
* "Literature/{{Kintaro}}"
* "Literature/LittleRedRidingHood"
** "Red Cap"
* "Literature/TheLordOfLornAndTheFalseSteward"
* "Literature/TheLoveOfThreeOranges"
* "Literature/TheLudicrousWishes"
* "Literature/MollyWhuppie"
* "Literature/{{Momotaro}}"
* "Literature/TheNightingale
* "Literature/TheOneHandedGirl"
* "Music/PeterAndTheWolf"
* "Literature/ThePiedPiperOfHamelin"
* "Literature/{{Pintosmalto}}"
* "Literature/PrinceLindworm"
* "Literature/ThePrincessOnTheGlassHill"
* "Literature/{{Prunella}}"
* "Literature/{{Puddocky}}"
* "Literature/PussInBoots"
* "Literature/{{Rapunzel}}"
* "Literature/TheRoseTree"
* "Literature/{{Rumpelstiltskin}}"
* "Literature/{{Schippeitaro}}"
* "Literature/TheSevenFoals"
* "Literature/TheSevenRavens"
* "Literature/SirAldingar"
* "Literature/TheSixServants"
* "Literature/SleepingBeauty"
* "Literature/TheSnowQueen"
* "Literature/SnowWhiteAndTheSevenDwarfs"
* "Literature/SnowWhiteAndRoseRed"
* "Literature/SnowWhiteFireRed"
* "Literature/SoriaMoriaCastle"
* "Literature/TheStoryOfKingOdd"
* "Literature/TheStoryOfTheYouthWhoWentForthToLearnWhatFearWas"
* "Literature/SunMoonAndTalia"
* "Literature/TamLin"
* "Literature/{{Tattercoats}}"
* "Literature/{{Tatterhood}}"
* "Literature/TheThreeAunts"
* "Literature/ThreeBillyGoatsGruff"
* "Literature/TheThreeLittleMenInTheWood"
* "Literature/ThreeLittlePigs"
* The Literature/TomThumb tales
* "Literature/TsarevitchIvanTheFireBirdAndTheGrayWolf"
* "Literature/TsarevichPetrAndTheWizard"
* "Literature/TrueAndUntrue"
* "Literature/TheTwelveDancingPrincesses"
* "Literature/VasilissaTheBeautiful"
* "Literature/TheWhiteDove"
* "Literature/TheWhiteDuck"
* "Literature/WilliesLady"
* "Literature/TheWolfAndTheSevenYoungKids"
* "Literature/YoungBeichan"
[[/index]]

[[index]]
[[header:Modern works in the style of fairy tales, adaptations of fairy tales, or works that in other ways draw on fairy tales:]]

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Literary Fairy Tales ]]

* "Literature/TheEmperorsNewClothes"
* "Literature/TheFairOneWithGoldenLocks"
* "Literature/TheHappyPrince"
* "Literature/KingOfTheGoldenRiver"
* "Literature/TheLittleMatchGirl"
* "Literature/TheLittleMermaid"
* "[[Literature/TheNutcracker The Nutcracker and the Mouse King]]" - A literary fairy tale known mostly for providing the basis for a ballet by {{Tchaikovsky}}.
* "Literature/{{Petronella}}"
* "Literature/ThePrincessAndThePea"
* "Literature/SaintGeorgeAndTheDragon"
* "Literature/TheShadow"
* "Literature/TheSnowQueen"
* "Literature/TheSteadfastTinSoldier"
* "Literature/TheStoryOfTheFireSwan"
* "Literature/TheTaleOfNornaGest"
* "Literature/TheTalesOfBeedleTheBard"
* "Literature/TheTinderBox"
* "Literature/TheUglyDuckling"

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Fairy Tale Adaptations and Retellings: ]]

* ''Disney/{{Aladdin}}''
* ''WesternAnimation/AnimatedTalesOfTheWorld''
* ''WesternAnimation/BarbieAsRapunzel''
* ''WesternAnimation/BarbieInTheTwelveDancingPrincesses''
* ''WesternAnimation/BarbieOfSwanLake''
* ''Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast''
* ''Literature/TheBloodyChamber'' - Creator/AngelaCarter's collection of popular fairy tales such as "Literature/{{Bluebeard}}," "Literature/BeautyAndTheBeast," and "Literature/{{Cinderella}}" rewritten with a feminist slant.
* ''Disney/{{Cinderella}}''
* ''WesternAnimation/Cinderella3D:'' Has nothing to do with Disney. It's a bizarre twist on the Cinderella story, taking place in the west.
* ''Film/TheCompanyOfWolves''
* Literature/ConfessionsOfAnUglyStepsister
* ''Literature/{{Deerskin}}''
* ''Series/DelightfulGirlChoonHyang'': A modern retelling of a South Korean Tale of a rich man's son and a courtesan's daughter.
** The Korean Movie ''Film/{{Chunhyang}}'' is a more accurate version of the folk tale.
* ''Webcomic/{{Erstwhile}}''
* ''Film/EverAfter''
* ''Series/FaerieTaleTheatre'': Live-action adaptations by way of British pantomime shows.
* ''Disney/{{Frozen}}''
* ''Webcomic/GrimTales''
* ''WesternAnimation/HappilyEverAfterFairyTalesForEveryChild''
* ''[[SoundHorizon Märchen]]'' - a SymphonicMetal RockOpera that bases itself on seven of the Grimm's fairy tales.
* ''LetsPretend'' - A Radio Series
* ''Disney/TheLittleMermaid'' - Disney's adaptation of Creator/HansChristianAndersen's literary fairy tale.
* ''Film/MirrorMirror''
* ''Film/{{Morozko}}''
* ''Disney/{{Pinocchio}}''
* "Literature/PrinceCharming": A short story drawing on ''Literature/{{Cinderella}}.''
* ''Literature/{{Pulchritude}}''
* ''Film/RedRidingHood''
* ''Literature/TheSevenwatersTrilogy'': The first volume draws on an old fairy tale for it's plot
* ''[[Literature/ShadowsontheMoon Shadows on the Moon]]'': Japanesesque version of ''Literature/{{Cinderella}}''
* ''Disney/SleepingBeauty''
* ''Film/TheSlipperAndTheRose''
* ''Disney/SnowWhiteAndTheSevenDwarfs'', the ground-breaking Disney animated film from 1937.
* ''Film/SnowWhiteATaleOfTerror''
* ''Film/SnowWhiteAndTheHuntsman''
* ''Series/TheStoryteller'', TV series by JimHenson
* ''Theatre/SwanLake''
* ''Disney/{{Tangled}}''
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Thumbelina}}''
* ''Anime/ThumbelinaAMagicalStory''
* ''Literature/WhiteAsSnow''

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Fairy Tale parodies, pastiches, and deconstructions: ]]

* ''[[Series/TheTenthKingdom The 10th Kingdom]]''
* ''Film/TheBrothersGrimm'' - The Creator/TerryGilliam movie.
* ''ComicBook/CastleWaiting'' - A comic series about what happens to various fairy tale characters after their well-known stories end.
* ''The VideoGame/DarkParables'' - a series of puzzle games for the PC in which various fairy tales are intertwined with each other and the player must set right the things which have gone wrong.
* ''TheDevilAndDanielWebster''
* ''Literature/DragonInDistress''
* ''Comicbook/{{Fables}}'' - A comic book series that deals with the lives of classic fairy tale characters stuck in UsefulNotes/NewYorkCity.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheFairlyOddParents'' - Based loosely on ''Cinderella'', but with a dose of other parodies in it.
* ''Literature/HalfUponATime''
* ''Theatre/IntoTheWoods''
* ''Webcomic/KnightsOfBuenaVista'' (in that it features a [[ShowWithinAShow fictional roleplaying game]] that is based on fairy tales instead of the typical HighFantasy of similar games)
* ''{{Literature/Melisande}}''
* ''Webcomic/NoRestForTheWicked''
* ''Literature/OnceUponAFairyTale'' - A book-on-tape featuring [[LittleRedRidingHood four]] [[{{Rumplestiltskin}} different]] [[TheFrogPrince fairy]] [[{{Literature/Goldilocks}} tales]], [[PerspectiveFlip told from the perspectives of each character.]]
* ''Series/OnceUponATime''
* ''Series/OnceUponATimeInWonderland''
* ''Literature/PoliticallyCorrectBedtimeStories'' by James Garner
* ''Literature/ThePrincessSeries''- by Jim C. Hines. It's basically the Disney princesses meets Charlie's Angels
* ''WesternAnimation/PussInBoots'' -- spin-off of the ''Shrek'' series.
* ''VideoGame/RuleOfRose''
* ''Franchise/{{Shrek}}''
* ''Literature/TheSistersGrimm''
* ''Literature/TheStinkyCheeseMan''
* ''Literature/TalesOfTheFiveHundredKingdoms'' - a world in which the FairyTaleTropes are the laws of nature.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Fairy Tale Fantasy ]]

* ''Literature/TheAdventuresOfPinocchio''
* ''Literature/AlicesAdventuresInWonderland'' - Notable for being a fairy tale of nonsense instead of magic.
* ''WesternAnimation/BarbieAndTheMagicOfPegasus''
* ''WesternAnimation/BarbieAndTheDiamondCastle''
* ''WesternAnimation/BarbieAndTheSecretDoor''
* ''Literature/TheBlackSwan''
* ''Literature/CastleInTheAir''
* ''Literature/CharlieAndTheChocolateFactory'' is built on ''[[MadScientist mad science]]'' instead of magic, but fits many fairy tale tropes otherwise. Many other Creator/RoaldDahl works aimed at children qualify as fairy tales as well, and his ''Revolting Rhymes'' is a collection of tongue-in-cheek retellings of "Cinderella", "Snow White", etc.
* ''Literature/{{Coraline}}'', a book by Creator/NeilGaiman.
** ''WesternAnimation/{{Coraline}}'', a film adaptation of the same name.
* ''WesternAnimation/CorpseBride''
* ''Film/EdwardScissorhands''
* ''Animation/EraseUnaVez''
* ''Series/{{Fantaghiro}}''
* ''Literature/FarmerGilesOfHam''
* ''Literature/HalfUponATime''
* ''Literature/HowlsMovingCastle'' - A novel [[ContinuityNod in which a witch bewitched the hatter's daughter]], as well as the loose [[Anime/HowlsMovingCastle anime adaptation]] of the same name.
* ''Film/{{Labyrinth}}''
* ''Literature/LandOfOz''
** ''Literature/TheWonderfulWizardOfOz'' is the novel that started it all.
** ''Literature/TheMarvelousLandOfOz'' is its first sequel.
** ''Literature/TalesOfTheMagicLand'' is the Soviet version of Oz.
** ''Literature/{{Wicked}}'' is a revisionist novel about the Wicked Witch of the West, later adapted into a much more famous musical.
** ''Theatre/{{Wicked}}'' - The musical adaptation of the novel.
** ''Theatre/TheWiz'' is the original novel given a RaceLift; the movie adaptation also gives it a SettingUpdate.
* ''TheLifeAndAdventuresOfSantaClaus''
* ''Literature/TheLightPrincess'' - And many of the other stories of Creator/GeorgeMacDonald.
* ''Film/LittleOtik''
* ''Series/{{Merlin}}'', specifically the episodes ''[[{{Recap/MerlinS01E11TheLabyrinthOfGedref}} The Labyrinth of Gedref]]'' and ''[[{{Recap/MerlinS04E11TheHuntersHeart}} The Hunter's Heart]]''.
* ''Literature/{{Moonflowers}}'', an UrbanFantasy on [=hitRECord=]. It's written in the style of fairy tales, draws heavily on CelticMythology, and is described as [[{{Grimmification}} "the unsettling kind"]] of fairy tale.
* ''Literature/OnceUponATime''
* ''Literature/TheOrdinaryPrincess''
* ''Literature/TheOrphansTales''
* ''Anime/OtogiJuushiAkazukin''
* ''Film/PansLabyrinth''
* ''Literature/ThePaperBagPrincess''
* ''Film/{{Penelope}}''
* ''Literature/PeterPan''
* ''Literature/ThePlucker'' - An illustrated novel by Brom
* ''Literature/{{Poison}}''
* ''Literature/ThePrincessBride''
* ''Anime/PrincessTutu''
* ''Anime/RevolutionaryGirlUtena''
* ''Literature/{{Satyrday}}''
* ''Literature/{{Stardust}}'', the novel by Neil Gaiman
** ''Film/{{Stardust}}'', the film adaptation of the above
* ''Literature/SylvieAndBruno''
* ''The13Clocks''
* ''Literature/TalesoftheBigBadWolf'' is a fantasy web novel that is a loosely based retelling of a Red Riding Hood romantic polygon that incorporates other myths, fairy tales, and nursery rhymes.
* ''Literature/TheTaleOfDespereaux''
* ''Literature/TalesOfTheFrogPrincess''
** The first book [[InspiredBy inspired the film]] ''Disney/ThePrincessAndTheFrog''
* ''Film/ValerieAndHerWeekOfWonders''
* ''Literature/TheVelveteenRabbit''
* ''Literature/TheWideAwakePrincess''
* ''Literature/TheWishingMaiden''
[[/index]]
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