Fun Facts about Jack and the Beanstalk:
– The Jack and the Beanstalk story first appeared in print about 1730.
– Older versions of Jack and the Beanstalk are called Jack and the Giant Killer because the story originally didn’t have a beanstalk at all!
– It’s one of the best-known and best-loved fairy tales in Britain, and also one of the oldest.
– Researchers at the universities in Durham and Lisbon believe that the story of ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’ dates back over 5,000 years.
– In some versions of the tale, a back-story is included, which informs us that the giant actually stole his riches from Jack’s father.
– Jack and his mother live happily ever after, and are never poor or hungry again, thanks to Jack’s burgling skills. Who says crime doesn’t pay?
– Some scholars believe the first telling of Little Red Riding Hood actually originated in East Asia, and was called The Tiger Grandmother.
– In one of the earliest tellings of Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Goldilocks isn’t a cute little girl. Instead, she’s a foul-mouthed old woman!
– Before deciding on the title Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carrol also considered Alice’s Hour in Elfland and Alice Among the Faeries.
– The name Maleficent comes from the Latin word ‘Maleficenta’ which means ‘evil-doing’.
– The Beauty and the Beast tales were originally written to help young girls cope with the idea of an arranged marriage.
– The cruel stepmothers in Snow White and Hansel and Gretel were natural mothers in Grimms’ early editions.
– Almost all the tales celebrate wits, courage and resilience.
– Fairy tales were originally written as much for adults as children.
– Snow White’s dwarfs had no names until Disney came along.
– “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale,” Andersen.
– In the French version of Rapunzel, the story does not have a happy ending.
– In the French Cinderella, Cinderella forgives her stepsisters and finds good husbands for them.
– In the Brothers Grimm version of the Cinderella story, the slipper is not glass, but gold.
– The opening words ‘Once upon a time’ has been dated back to Chaucer in the 14th century.
– The very first tale of Cinderella was recorded in China at around AD 850.