The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen

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10 Questions

What is the Little Mermaid willing to give up in exchange for a human soul?

Her immortality

What is the color of the water in the ocean described in the story?

As blue as the petals of the loveliest cornflower

What is the material used to make the walls of the sea king's palace?

Coral

What is the purpose of the mussel shells on the roof of the sea king's palace?

To open and shut with the tide

Where do the sea folk live according to the story?

In the deepest part of the ocean

What is unique about the sea king's mother?

She was a clever woman proud of her noble birth

What did the little sea princesses use to do in the palace?

They would play in the great halls

What did the fish do in the palace?

They would swim up to the princesses to eat out of their hands

What was special about the youngest princess's garden?

It was round like the sun

What was planted beside the marble statue in the youngest princess's garden?

A weeping willow tree

Study Notes

The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen

  • The story is one of Hans Christian Andersen's most beloved fairy tales, written in 1837.
  • The story is about a mermaid who wants to give up her life in the sea and immortality in exchange for a human soul.

The Underwater World

  • The ocean is described as blue as the petals of the loveliest cornflower, and as clear as the purest glass.
  • The sea floor is deep, requiring many steeples to reach from the bottom to the surface of the sea.
  • The sea floor is inhabited by sea folk, with marvelous trees and flowers that move with the water.
  • Fish of all sizes dart among the branches, like birds flit through trees on land.

The Sea King's Palace

  • The palace of the sea king is made of coral, with high pointed windows of the clearest amber.
  • The roof is made of mussel shells that open and shut with the tide, each holding glistening pearls.
  • The sea king is a widower, and his old mother keeps house for him.

The Sea Princesses

  • The sea king's daughters are six lovely girls, but the youngest is the most beautiful of them all.
  • The youngest princess has skin as soft and tender as a rose petal, and eyes as blue as the deep sea.
  • She, like her sisters, has no feet, but instead, a fish tail.

The Palace Garden

  • The palace has a big garden with flaming red and deep-blue trees, whose fruit glitters like gold.
  • The trees' blossoms flame like fire on their constantly waving stalks.
  • The soil is fine, blue sand, with a strange blue veil over everything.
  • The garden has a sense of weightlessness, like being in the air with only the blue sky above and beneath.

Explore the classic fairy tale of The Little Mermaid, where a mermaid sacrifices her life in the sea for a human soul. This beloved tale by Hans Christian Andersen is a must-read for fairy tale enthusiasts. Take this quiz to test your knowledge of the story and its characters.

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