As we all know, fairy tales usually have cheerful endings. In fact, the original fairy tales contrast with modern tales especially in the manner in which they end. To our surprise, the original fairy tales are pretty tragic and even creepy! Some companies such as Disney changed the creepy version so that the childhood of people all over the world won't be ruined...The list below looks at some common endings we are familiar with, and also unveils the gruesome origins you probably didn't know.

Top 10 Original Fairy Tales


The Pied Piper

The modern tale of the Pied Piper talks of a man in color-patched clothes who can offer a solution to clear the rats that had bunged in a village. He successful does that on an agreement that the villagers will pay him a vast amount of money. However, the villagers are reluctant. So he drives away the children to a cave and finally returns them on getting paid. In the original fairy tale, same events occur. However, the piper takes all the children to a river and they all drown except a lame boy who doesn't catch up.



The modern version of the fairy tale dubbed “Cinderella” ends with this beautiful lady finding favor with the prince as her two evil step-sisters get lords for their husbdands - a sign of a happy ending for everyone. However, in the Grimm brothers' verson, the two step-sisters chop off their toes and heels to wear the slipper. Later on, two pigeons peck out their eyes. Finally, they become blind beggars while Cinderella and the prince are happy forever.


The Frog Prince

The modern version tells that the frog prince is restored to royalty with a light kiss given by a princess. This is indeed a blissful ending for the audience. However, the original tale is a complete contrast to the events in the end. The princess beats the frog very hard until he is deformed. In another version, the princess burns the frog and cuts off his head. She hopes that the dark magic can be dispelled by these methods...


The Little Mermaid

The modern version of "The Little Mermaid" by Disney ends well. The mermaid becomes human and finally get married to Eric. The wedding is colorful with mer-people and human attendants. It is indeed a happy ending. However, in the original version of Hans Christian Andersen, the mermaid trades her chopped tongue and fins for a pair of human legs with the titular mermaid. But the legs cause her excruciating pain. The mermaid despairs when she sees Eric marries a daughter of the King. She is given a knife to kill Eric but she gives up and jumps into the sea and changes to foam. 


Hansel and Gretel

Recent versions of Hansel and Gretel highlight a fateful journey of two children who get lost deep in the forest. Unfortunately, the predicament worsens when they come across a witch who is ready to eat them up. However, they finally escape after throwing the witch into fire. In the original French version, “The Lost Children”, a devil is tricked by the children, but in turn he uses a sawhorse to make one of them bleed. As the devil’s wife demonstrates on how to get on it, the children escape after slashing her throat.


Beauty and the Beast

The modern “Beauty and the Beast” tale gets a sudden twist of events towards the end. The beast that is fierce and demanding at first becomes human once again and it is a happy ending for all except Gaston who dies after failing to kill the beast. In the old version of the fairy tale of “Beauty and the Beast” in 1957, Belle's jealous sisters conspire to leave her to be devoured by the beast in the tale. For them, beastiality and family homicide are the same and neither is better.



The modern tale of Rapunzel explains of how she escaped from the tower where she was held hostage by a sorceress. A prince gets blind by the thorns on the ground as he falls from the tower. They later reunite as she uses magic tears to cure his blindness. The previous Germany version tells that Rapunzel says her dress is tight on the waist (because of pregnancy) and on realizing that, the sorceress throws her away to wander in the wilderness.


Snow White

The modern version of the “Snow White” tale talks of a queen who requires of a huntsman to kill her and present her heart as proof. The huntsman is not able to do that and instead presents a boar’s heart. In the original version, the queen wants Snow White’s lungs and liver for dinner! Snow White wakes up when she is knocked over by the horse of the prince as he takes her back to his palace. In Grimm's version, the queen is forced to dance in red hot iron shoes until she dies at last.


Little Red Riding Hood

The modern version of this fairy tale has a cheerful ending where Riding Hood gets saved by a woodsman who successfully kills the wolf. However, the original French version shows the lady is cheated by the wolf about the directions to her grandmother’s home. It is a sad ending that Riding Hood takes up the instructions and is eaten by the wolf. There are no tales of a woodsman who saves her and no grandmother. In Italy and Austria, the tale of Little Red Hat is more scary. An ogre, instead of a wolf, imtates Little Red Hat's grandmother. Little Red Hat mistakes her grandmother's teeth for rice, blood for wine and flesh for meat. After she jumps into the bed with the orge, the orge gobbles her.



Rumpelstiltskin is one of the few original fairy tales of their kind. The contemporary author modified it to a more horrible story that Rumpelstiltskin kills himself by driving his left leg into the ground and ripping himself a half. Originally, Rumpelstiltskin turns straw into gold, all for a young girl who is meant to die if she does not carry out that achievement. This is done in return of her newborn baby, but she can't do it later on. Rumpelstiltskin tells her that if she can guess his name, he will let her off the bargain. But she guesses it correctly after she overhears him singing his name. Rumpelstiltskin angrily gets lost.


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