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Tsundere / Folklore

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What do you mean, "The tsundere archetype is Older Than They Think"? Are you trying to say I'm frumpy and old-fashioned?!

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     Harsh (Tsun) 
  • The Lady Linnet (or Lynette, or whatever variation you fancy) of the Arthurian myths would be a straight example; initially hostile to Knight in Shining Armor Sir Gareth and frequently insulting him, but eventually a softer side comes out as well. Tennyson's interpretation is particularly well done.
    • Also worth mentioning is Queen Guinevere herself in regards to Lancelot in Sir Thomas Malory's Le Morte Darthur. She can be very tender and affectionate toward him, but she's been known to banish him from the kingdom (and then yell at his relatives in his absence) when she's angry with him (usually for some real or imagined infidelity on Lancelot's part).
      • She continues in that vein in T.H. White's The Once and Future King, when she is usually his lover, but goes into an absolute rage when she believes that he lied to her and slept with Elaine when she told him not to (to be fair, he basically fell for the same trick twice after she overlooked the first time). Poor Lancelot goes insane after she screams at him and leaps out of a window, causing her to immediately switch to a panic, fearing what she did to him and wondering how to fix it. Ironically, Lancelot himself fit this. When he first joined the Round Table, he hated Guinevere (he felt she stole Arthur's attention away) and was rude and short-tempered with her, while she tried her hardest to be kind to her husband's best friend. After getting angry with her for a mistake, he realizes his mistake and goes on to be her lover.
    • It's not just Malory. In The Knight of the Cart, Lancelot hesitated before getting in a cart to get news of Guinevere, because it is considered disgraceful. Many other characters regard him as disgraced by doing it and abuse him for it. Guinevere freezes on him, until he finally learns that it was the momentary hesitation; he should have moved instantly.
  • Pele, the Hawaiian volcano goddess, is just not someone to be trifled with in general - she WILL explode (quite literally) at the smallest offenses. However, she's very protective and loving to her sisters and her lovers - at least, until her "favorite" sister Hi'iaka fell in love with one of her lovers. Hi'iaka, being a goddess, got better; the lover, being human, did not. Additionally, this goddess of volcanoes and fire has a love-hate relationship with Kamapua'a, a demi-god of rain and vegetation. Given that volcanos in Hawaiian lore are known to explode with little warning...

     Sweet (Dere) 

Back to Tsundere, you insensitive jerk...