Activity Pg. 63: The Princess and the Pea
In the fairy tale, The Princess and the Pea, by Hans Christian Anderson, a Prince is in search of a Princess for her hand in marriage, but there are many “Princesses,” and he only wants to marry a real princess. In the exposition of this fairy tale, there is a Prince who has traveled all around the world in search of a real Princess to marry, but unfortunately every Princess he comes across is not the real Princess he wants. The Prince then returns home, and one stormy night, a tattered Princess shows up at his door. In this case, the inciting incident is when the Princess shows up at his door, this leads to the rising action of the plot. In the rising action of this fairy tale, the Prince is faced with the conflict that this Princess is only another fake, and not what he is looking for. As a part of the rising action, the Prince’s Mother puts a single pea under twenty mattresses, which the Princess sleeps on later that evening. This leads up to the climax because the conflict will be solved by the single pea under the Princess’s bed, and in the morning the conflict will be solved. The climax is reached when the Princess wakes in the morning, and the Prince’s Mother asks her how she slept. This is when the emotional tension reaches its peak because either she felt the pea and she is a real Princess, or she did not, and the Prince would not have married her. The falling action in this fairy tales results when the Princess confesses that she had a terrible night, because she felt something bruising her entire body. By this point the conflict is solved. The Prince and his Mother decide that she is indeed a real Princess, and fit for his hand in marriage. Lastly, the denouement is reached after the Prince’s decision to marry the Princess, they get married and “Live happily ever after.” This is the denouement because all conflicts have been resolved, and the story has its final resolution.
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