Literature: Snow-White and Rose-Red

"Snow-White and Rose-Red" (or "Snow-White and Rosy-Red") is a fairy tale told by both Charles Perrault and the Brothers Grimm in their fairy tale collections. The oldest known version had the title "The Ungrateful Dwarf".

A poor peasant woman lives in a cabin in the woods. She grows two rose trees in front of her house, one with white roses and one with red. When the flowers bloomed she had two children, both girls. She named them both after the trees, Snow White and Rose Red respectively. They have an adventure involving an evil dwarf, a bear that turns out to be an enchanted prince, the enchanted prince's enchanted brother, and, of course, eventually live happily ever after.

Adapted into comic form by Gina Biggs of Erstwhile

And, no, that Snow White has nothing to do with this story. The German versions of their names are spelled slightly differently. (Neither does Snow-White-Fire-Red)

"Snow-White and Rose-Red" contains examples of:

  • Adaptation Expansion: The story has been adapted several times with expansions of the subject matter. One of the lengthier adaptation was by Patricia C. Wrede, who moved the setting to Elizabethan England and greatly fleshed out the setting and characters.
  • Animorphism: The bear turns out to be a prince under a curse.
  • Babies Ever After: Implied
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: Naturally, the two siblings are described as gorgeous and pure hearted, while the cruel and spiteful dwarf is ugly and twisted.
  • Big Bad: More like a very tiny bad.
  • Curse
  • Demi Human: The talking bear.
  • Depraved Dwarf: In both senses of the word "dwarf".
  • Disappeared Dad: The story never bothers to say where the father of the girls went.
  • Double In-Law Marriage: Conveniently, the cursed prince has a brother so both siblings can get married to princes.
  • Everything's Better with Princesses: By the end of the story, both girls are now royalty.
  • Fiery Redhead: Rose Red is the spunky tomboy of the sisters.
  • Friend to All Living Things: The siblings themselves are said to be the perfect children.
  • Ghibli Hills: The forest, unlike the usual Lost Woods of fairy tales, is safe for small children to wander in, even overnight
  • Happily Ever After: The dwarf dies, the prince is saved, the girls get married to princes, and their mom lives in the lap of luxury.
  • Love at First Sight: Snow White and the Prince.
  • No Name Given: The Princes. Or at least the younger Prince.
  • Our Angels Are Different: They protect little girls from falling off cliffs.
  • Prince Charming: The cursed prince is pretty typical...though since he spends most of the story as a talking (friendly) bear, he's a bit of a subversion.
  • Rags to Royalty: Snow White and Rose Red's reward from the bear.
  • Random Events Plot: Many, many elements of the story are irrelevant to each other.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Rose Red and Snow White, respectively
  • Rule of Three: The girls helped the dwarf three times.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Some adaptations give the two princes this treatment.
  • Satellite Love Interest: Given that the girls do know the oldest Prince for awhile, but we don't know how long the courting process for Rose Red was with the Prince's brother.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: In addition to the contrast of colors, the siblings also have wildly different personalities.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: "Snow White was more quiet and gentle than Rose Red. Rose Red liked better to run about in the meadows and fields seeking flowers and catching butterflies; but Snow White sat at home with her mother, and helped her with her housework."
  • Ungrateful Bastard: The dwarf, who demands help from the girls whenever he's in trouble, and doesn't offer them so much as a "thank you" afterwards.


Alternative Title(s):

Snow White And Rose Red