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greenmama
Registered User
(6/4/07 7:47 pm)


ocean in fairytales
Hi There everyone,
I'm starting a project involving myths and fairytales that are set in, near or about the ocean, preferably with a female character in the lead. The first that comes to mind is the Little Mermaid, but surely there are more fairytales or folktales about the sea? Can anybody help?
Thanks in advance,
greenmama (Leanne) :)

AliceCEB
Registered User
(6/4/07 8:12 pm)


Re: ocean in fairytales
The realm of ocean stories is huge.

If you're covering myths, many Greek and Roman myths pertain to the sea (the Odyssey, Jason and the Argonauts, Theseus, Daedelus and Icarus, the expulsion of Perseus and Danae, etc.) which is not surprising, given their geography. Many of these stories include women, although they tend to be the victim or the evil creature to escape--although there are exceptions. If you include the Bible, there's the story of Noah and of Jonah--although other than Noah's wife, there aren't many women. Within the story of Gilgamesh, he crosses a sea to get to the immortal man, who recounts the story of a great flood that covered the world. The only woman of note in that episode, however, is the immortal man's wife. The Icelandic Sagas are full of stories about Norse and Icelandic raiders (Vikings) and their adventures both on and off-shore--a few include women, although usually in the role of stolen wife.

A large number of fairy tales, include animals from the sea, such as talking fish or selkies. What comes to mind at the moment is The Fisherman's Wife--which features a woman in the lead character, but unfortunately a scold.

Best,
Alice

Edited by: AliceCEB at: 6/4/07 8:16 pm
MaryCatelli
Registered User
(6/5/07 6:49 pm)


Re: ocean in fairytales
How much about the ocean do they have to be?

Penta of the Chopped-Off Hands, in the Pentamore, is thrown into the sea in a chest. Twice. (After the manner of Danae and various other heroines.

The Mermaid and the Boy, the king is trapped at sea when he makes the rash promise to give the mermaid his child. In The White Dove, two brothers promise their unborn brother to a witch for the same reason.

In How Ian Direach got the Blue Falcon , Ian lures the heroine onto a ship to kidnap her. This is also found in The Golden Mermaid and Faithful John

Rosemary Lake
Registered User
(6/8/07 2:47 am)


"The Crab Prince"
Calvino has a charming fairy tale set by the ocean, iirc the title is "The Crab Prince."

In Lang maybe there's a tale set in perhaps France, about a spoiled girl who is sent to serve some underwater queen. Most of the tale takes place on land as she does a mission for the underwater beings (she is transformed to several animals, including a doe iirc), but there are some good long underwater scenes.

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