Nice Fairy Tales, illustrated by Carl Offterdinger, Fedor Flinzer, and Josef Emil Dolleschal

This very special collection of fairy tales, fables, and legends is illustrated by three top artists from the end of the 19th century: Carl Offterdinger (1829 - 1889), Fedor Flinzer (1932 - 1911), and Josef Emil Dolleschal (? - 1921). The book was published in 1890 which means we are witnessing probably the last significant project by Carl Offterdinger.

Nice Fairy Tales was written in Dutch but published in Berlin by Adolf Engel publishing house. There are 24 stories altogether, each written on one page only. This means we are dealing with condensed versions. Each one of them is equipped with a facing full-page color illustration, most of them consisting of several scenes from the story.

We also have to mention decorative borders for the text part of the book, made in Art Nouveau style. All borders are the same and here is an example:

And now for the stories!Snow WhiteSnow White is a girl who lost her mother at an early age. Her father remarried with a beautiful woman who is obsessed with her magic mirror. When she finds that her stepdaughter is more beautiful than she is, she wants to kill Snow White. The girl dies (several times), yet at the end a prince rescues her and they invite the wicked stepmother to the wedding ...


CinderellaCinderella is the most popular fairy tale in the world. Everybody is familiar with a story about a nice girl who is bullied by her stepmother and stepsisters. When the prince of the country decides to organize a ball where he will choose his wife, Cinderella gets a chance to end her misery. Will she get the appropriate gown?


Brother and SisterBrother and Sister is another fairy tale about children with a wicked stepmother. When they escape in the woods, she poisons the brooks and the boy changes into a deer. His sister takes care of both until a king comes by hunting. He marries her and they take the deer to the castle but the wicked stepmother still presents a danger to both ...


The Wishing Table, The Golden Ass, and the Cudgel in the SackA man has three sons and a goat. Each of the boys is assigned to take the goat to graze and the goat always tells the father she is still starving after the return from the pasture. Father drives all the boys from home and each finds a job. When they return with their payments in the form of magical objects, a cunning innkeeper comes into the picture ...


The Adventures of Reintje de VosThis story is known in many variations. The oldest were written as poems. Reintje (REynard) the Vos is a fox. He is smart and cunning. His tricks are so annoying to the other animals he has to defend himself in front of the king. Reintje's skillful talk gets him out of trouble.


A Heart of StoneThis is an old fairy tale written by Wilhelm Hauff. It's a story about a boy who has three wishes and spends the first two for good times just to lose everything. He still wants to regain his material goods and pays that with his heart. Then he loses everything and more, again. Luckily, he still has one wish left.


The Pack of RagamuffinsThe cock and the hen decide to go for a trip. On their way, they meet a duck, a needle, and a pin. Everybody stops at the inn and promises the innkeeper a hen's egg for payment. Instead of that the cock organizes a series of pranks convincing the innkeeper to never get such strange guests under his roof.


Little ThumbLittle Thumb by Charles Perrault is often misplaced with Thumbling by Brother Grimm. But it's a completely different story, resembling Hansel and Gretel with an ogre instead of the witch and seven boys instead of the brother and sister. Little Thumb is the youngest and the most resourceful. He not only saves himself and his brothers but steels seven-league boots as well.


Giant Sausage of KonigsbergThere was a serious famine in Konigsberg and everybody was desperate. People had a meeting to discuss what to do. Somebody had an idea to put all the remaining money together and make a feast so each citizen had at least one chance to enjoy life a bit. They really financed the creation of a giant sausage and threw a party ...


Elephant and the TailorElephant and tailor were friends for a long time. Each evening the tailor gave bananas to the elephant when he passed by. One day, however, the tailor had a really bad day and instead of that pricked the elephant into the trunk. The elephant became angry as well and decided to do something nasty to the tailor as well.


The Story of Schlauraffen LandThere is not so much of a story in The Story of Schlauraffen Land. More like a series of impressions and imaginations. Can you imagine a land where everything is in abundance? Fried chicken grows on trees and brooks are full of lemonade? Nobody has to work and nonsense stuff happens all the time ...


Till EulenspiegelTill Eulenspiege is, just like Reintje (Reynard) de Vos, another story, or, better, series of stories, about a trickster. He continuously plays all kinds of pranks on people, especially having fun with higher members of society. We can look at him as a kind of German version of Robin Hood in England.


This was the story number 12. Next 12 stories are available on next page.