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Stories Before 1850. 0095B: Charles Perrault, The History of Princess Amanda, or, Sleeping Beauty in the Wood

Author: Perrault, Charles
Title: The History of Princess Amanda, or, Sleeping Beauty in the Wood
Cat. Number: 0095B
Date: No date
1st Edition: 1696
Pub. Place: London
Publisher: Printed by J. Bailey, 116, Chancery Lane
Price: 6d
Pages: 1 vol., 34pp. plus one page of advertisements
Size: 13.5 x 8.5 cm
Illustrations: Frontispiece plus two engravings
Note: Pages 29-32 missing. Bound together with 0095A-0095E

Images of all pages of this book

Page 012 of item 0095B

Introductory essay

By the nineteenth century it had become normal to change aspects of Charles Perrault's fairy tales, both for the sake of concision and to suit contemporary sensibilities. The version of 'Sleeping Beauty in the Wood' remains remarkably true to the original, written by Charles Perrault in 1697 and first translated into English by Robert Samber in 1729. Details are retained - such as the name of the sauce - 'sauce Robert' - with which Sleeping Beauty's children are to be spiced when eaten by her mother-in-law, the ogre. Indeed, this post-wedding sequel to was itself often entirely excised (c.f. 0041), but is reproduced here in all its horror. Only the verse morals which Perrault appended are missing. But the name of the tale has also been altered. Where the title 'Princess Amanda' comes from is unclear. In its original French, the tale was known as 'La Belle au bois dormant', which was mis-translated as 'Sleeping Beauty in the Wood' by Samber, and, later in the nineteenth century, was shortened to 'Sleeping Beauty'. This edition is apparently unique in naming the princess. For more on the origin and development of this tales see the Opies' Classic Fairy Tales, pp.102-118.

John Bailey was operating at 116 Chancery Lane in London from roughly 1807 to 1822. He was then joined by William Bailey and later, Joseph Bailey, presumably his sons, and the form of the imprint changed to include their names. Since this edition of Princess Amanda gives only the single name John Bailey, it seems fairly certain that it dates from the period when he was operating alone (Brown 1982: 7; Todd 1972: 7).

Opie, Peter and Iona, The Classic Fairy Tales, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1974, rpt. London, 1980