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The Twelve Dancing Princesses

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Today's fairy tale is "The Twelve Dancing Princesses," recorded by the Grimm brothers. There are also many other versions of this story, from many different cultures. You can read the Grimm version here.

The story is that twelve beautiful princesses all sleep in a large room together. Despite their bedroom door being locked, every morning their dancing slippers have been worn out, as though they have been dancing all night. The king offers up half his kingdom and a daughter to marry in exchange for the mystery to be solved. Several men try, but are drugged by the princesses, and beheaded for failure.

The biggest question I have after reading this story is, are the princesses -who sneak away to dance, and intentionally cause men to be beheaded- selfish and malicious by nature? Or are they under a spell that forces them to dance all night and keep their activities secret, making the soldier who solves the mystery a hero who rescues them? Something to ponder!

Sheilah Beckett


Errol Le Cain


Becca Stadtlander


Kay Nielsen

Elenore Abbott

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