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Modern Interpretations of Bluebeard

Full-Text Fiction

The Seven Wives of Bluebeard
by Anatole France (1903)

Bluebeard's Ghost
by William Makepeace Thackeray (1843)

Bluebeard: A Musical Fantasy
by Kate Douglas Wiggin (1914)

Full-Text Poems

How the Helpmate of Blue-Beard Made Free with a Door
by Guy Wetmore Carryl

by George Colman, the Younger

Blue-Beard's Closet
by Rose Terry Cooke

Untitled [Bluebeard]
by Ralph Waldo Emerson

by Edna St. Vincent Millay



Bluebeard Poetry

by George Colman, the Younger

A fond husband will, after a conjugal strife,
Kiss, forgive, weep, and fall on the neck of his wife.
But Abomelique’s wife other conduct may dread;
When he falls on her neck, ’tis to cut off her head.

How many there are, when a wife plays the fool,
Will argue the point with her calmly and cool;
The bashaw, who don’t relish debates of this sort,
Cuts the woman as well as the argument short.

But whatever her errors, ’tis mighty unfair
To cut off her head just as if ’twere all hair;
For this truth is maintained by philosophers still,
That the hair grows again but the head never will.

And among all the basest, sure he is most base
Who can view, then demolish, a woman’s sweet face!
Her smiles might the malice of devils disarm:
And the devil take him who would offer her harm!

from Broad Grins, My Nightgown and Slippers and other Humorous Works Prose and Poetical of George Colman the Younger (1872)


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The Poets' Grimm edited by Beaumont and Carlson

Transformations by Anne Sexton

Secrets beyond the Door : The Story of Bluebeard and His Wives by Maria Tatar

Blue Fairy Book by Andrew Lang


©Heidi Anne Heiner, SurLaLune Fairy Tales
Page created 12/1998; Last updated 6/28/07