True Love Prevails

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True Love Prevails
Wendy Cook
Rowan Cabarrus Community College

The Lady or The Tiger is a beautiful little story that leaves the reader hanging at its end. This is a paper arguing the possible outcome of the story.

No one can ever doubt the power of true love. Even when faced with the darkest of decisions, when love is present, it always wins one way or another. Frank Stockton poses this age old question to his reader in the short story The Lady or the Tiger. Literally, he leaves it to your discretion to decide whether a barbaric princess chooses her lovers fate to be death at the hand of a tiger or marriage to a beautiful woman. I believe that even thought this princess was barbaric in nature she chose life for her lover and true love prevailed.

I first realized that the princess chose the lady over the tiger because even when she first fell in love with a man of lower standing than herself, she already knew the risks well. Stockton uses the whole first page of his story explaining the king’s barbaric system of punishment (p. 1). If someone was caught wronging the king, that person was forced to face two doors and to choose one. The first door held a raging tiger who would eat him and the other door held a beautiful maiden to whom the man would be married to immediately as his “reward” for “innocence”. The princess was the king’s pride and joy because “she was the apple of his eye, and was loved by him above all humanity.” (p.2) This close relationship propelled the princess’s interests and she too loved the barbaric custom her father began for she had a “soul as fervent and imperious as his own.” (p. 2) A child who was so loved by her father would know what he would approve and what he would condemn. She knew this before she chose to fall in love with a commoner, but she did it anyway. I truly believe that just...
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