Fairytale Symbolism

Topics: Brothers Grimm, Fairy tale, Grimm's Fairy Tales Pages: 2 (709 words) Published: November 8, 2011
I chose to write about Rumpelstiltskin for the Fairytale symbolism because I found this particular fairy tale to be intriguing not only because it's one of the most well known fairy tales, but also because the entire story is laced with symbolism. Starting with the name, Rumpelstiltskin, which means little rattle stilt such as a little goblin in German. Though the average reader of this tale wouldn't know this, German children and parents alike would hear this name and immediately picture specific physical attributes to the demon like character. A brief summary of the fairy tale consists of a poor miller who shells his daughter out to the king claiming she can spin straw into gold for his own fast material gain. The king is intrigued and takes her in, giving her three days to spin the straw into gold or else she will be killed. If in the case she is capable of such greatness, she will become his wife. As she's locked away in this room in despair, a creature appears who tells her he will grant her the ability of spinning the straw into gold under the condition that she must give her first born child up if she is unable to tell him his name by that time.

I think the most dominant plot at play in this fairy tale is rags to riches, being as the miller is poor and wants to gain wealth quickly, as well as respect amongst the royalty. Also, the other common symbolism and imagery is the ideal of control. Both the miller and the King desire control over the girl, the miller clearly controls his daughter by throwing her under the bus to the King for his own selfish gain as well as the King informing the girl she has three days to spin the gold or she dies, if she does in fact spin the gold she becomes his wife with absolutely no option.

The concept of Rumpelstiltskin representing the devil is a strong ideal particularly in the 1857 Grimm's version. Let alone that his name, Rumpelstiltskin means little gremlin, at one point when the creature gets so angry, he rips...
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