Fairy tales exist since ancient times and are present in all cultures around the world. Fairy tales include the appearance of fantastic elements in the form of talking animals and magic and enchantment. Typically it features folkloric fantasy characters, such as dwarves, dragons, elves, fairies, witches, gnomes, goblins, mermaids, trolls, unicorns, princesses, knights and heroes and heroines facing terrible ordeals. They were written for the first time in17th century. A fairy tale is a type of short story and the term is mainly used for stories with origins in the European tradition. A happy ending is one of their characteristics features, these stories are about hope.
Some of the best known are from Hans Christian Andersen (The Beetle who went on his Travels, The Emperor's New Clothes, The Little Mermaid, The Princess and the Pea,The Snow Man, The Snow Queen, Thumbelina or Little Tiny and The Ugly Duckling. Another important author are the Grimms Fairy Tales - Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, Goldilocks And The Three Bears, Hansel and Gretel, Little Red Riding Hood, Sleeping Beauty , Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, The Three Little Pigs and The Wise Little Girl. As a child my favorite among all these was Hans Christian Andersen's The emperor's new clothes.
The brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm collected stories that depicted the life of central Europeans of the time. They were inspired by Germanic oral storytelling, popular tradition, and folklore of the region. Many stories were based on real and sometimes gruesome events. These darker stories might be too terrifying for today’s kids and even adults. Adults were the audience of a fairy tale just as often as children but in the 19th and 20th centuries, the fairy tale became associated with children's literature.The fairy tales carried a powerful morality and lessons to the reader. We can find the influence of fairy tales also in art, cinema, dance like Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake, and song. Modern authors and movie animators use the code of fairy tale and still create magic and enchantment that is able to please kids and adults together.