|AKA||French: Cendrillon, Italian: Cenerentola, German: Aschenputtel|
|Aarne-Thompson grouping||AT 510 A ("the persecuted heroine")|
Cinderella, or The Little Glass Slipper (French: Cendrillon ou La Petite Pantoufle de verre, Italian: Cenerentola, German: Aschenputtel, Russian Золушка, Zolushka), is a European folk tale embodying a myth-element of unjust oppression in Histoires ou contes du temps passé published by Charles Perrault in 1697, and by the Brothers Grimm in their folk tale collection Grimms' Fairy Tales (1812).
Although both the story's title and the character's name change in different languages, in English-language folklore "Cinderella" is the archetypal name. The word "Cinderella" has, by analogy, come to mean one whose attributes were unrecognized, or one who unexpectedly achieves recognition or success after a period of obscurity and neglect. The still-popular story of "Cinderella" continues to influence popular culture internationally, lending plot elements, allusions, and tropes to a wide variety of media.
The Aarne–Thompson system classifies Cinderella as "the persecuted heroine". The story of Rhodopis about a Greek slave girl who marries the king of Egypt is considered the earliest known variant of the "Cinderella" story and many variants are known throughout the world.
- 1 Plot
- 2 Plot variations and alternative tellings
- 3 Folkloristics
- 4 Adaptations
- 5 Translations
- 6 Cinderella theme
- 7 See also
- 8 References
- 9 External links
Cenerentola, by Basile
Giambattista Basile, a Neapolitan soldier and government official, wrote Lo cunto de li cunti (The Story of Stories), or Pentamerone. It featured the tale of Cenerentola, which features a wicked and evil stepmother and two evil stepsisters, magical transformations, a missing slipper, and a hunt by a prince for the owner of the slipper. It was published posthumously in 1634.
- A widowed prince has a daughter, Zezolla (the Cinderella figure), who is tended by a beloved governess. The governess, with Zezolla's help, persuades the prince to marry her. The governess then brings forward six daughters of her own, who abuse Zezolla, and send her into the kitchen to work as a servant. The prince goes into the island of Sardinia, meets a fairy who gives presents to his daughter, and brings back for her, a golden spade, a golden bucket, a silken napkin, and a date seedling. The girl cultivates the tree, and when the king gives a ball, Zezolla appears dressed richly by a fairy living in the date tree. The king falls in love with her, but Zezolla runs away before he can find out who she is. Twice Zezolla escapes the king and his servants. The third time, the king's servant captures one of her slippers. The king invites all of the maidens in the land to a feast with a shoe-test, identifies Zezolla after the shoe jumps from his hand to her foot, and eventually marries her.
Cendrillon, by Perrault
One of the most popular versions of Cinderella was written in French by Charles Perrault in 1697, under the name Cendrillon. The popularity of his tale was due to his additions to the story, including the pumpkin, the fairy-godmother and the introduction of glass slippers.
- Once upon a time, there was a widower who married a proud and haughty woman as his second wife. She had two daughters, who were equally vain and selfish. By his first wife, he'd had a beautiful young daughter, a girl of unparalleled goodness and sweet temper. The stepmother and her daughters forced the first daughter into servitude, where she was made to work day and night doing menial chores. After the girl's chores were done for the day, she would retire to the barren and cold room given to her, and would curl up near the fireplace in an effort to stay warm. She would often arise covered in cinders, giving rise to the mocking nickname "Cinderella". Cinderella bore the abuse patiently and dared not tell her father, since his wife controlled him entirely.
- One day, the Prince invited all the young ladies in the land to a ball, planning to choose a wife from amongst them. The two stepsisters gleefully planned their wardrobes for the ball, and taunted Cinderella by telling her that maids were not invited to the ball.
- As the sisters departed to the ball, Cinderella cried in despair. Her Fairy Godmother magically appeared and immediately began to transform Cinderella from house servant to the young lady she was by birth, all in the effort to get Cinderella to the ball. She turned a pumpkin into a golden carriage, mice into horses, a rat into a coachman, and lizards into footmen. She then turned Cinderella's rags into a beautiful jewelled gown, complete with a delicate pair of glass slippers. The Godmother told her to enjoy the ball, but warned that she had to return before midnight, when the spells would be broken.
- At the ball, the entire court was entranced by Cinderella, especially the Prince. At this first ball, Cinderella remembers to leave before midnight. Back home, Cinderella graciously thanked her Godmother. She then greeted the stepsisters, who had not recognized her earlier and talked of nothing but the beautiful girl at the ball.
- Another ball was held the next evening, and Cinderella again attended with her Godmother's help. The Prince had become even more infatuated, and Cinderella in turn became so enchanted by him she lost track of time and left only at the final stroke of midnight, losing one of her glass slippers on the steps of the palace in her haste. The Prince chased her, but outside the palace, the guards saw only a simple country girl leave. The Prince pocketed the slipper and vows to find and marry the girl to whom it belonged. Meanwhile, Cinderella kept the other slipper, which did not disappear when the spell was broken.
- The Prince tried the slipper on all the women in the kingdom. When the Prince arrives at Cinderella's villa, the stepsisters tried in vain to win over the prince. Cinderella asked if she might try, while the stepsisters taunted her. Naturally, the slipper fitted perfectly, and Cinderella produced the other slipper for good measure. The stepsisters both pleaded for forgiveness, and Cinderella agreed to let bygones be bygones.
- Cinderella married the Prince, and the stepsisters also married two lords.
The first moral of the story is that beauty is a treasure, but graciousness is priceless. Without it, nothing is possible; with it, one can do anything.
However, the second moral of the story mitigates the first one and reveals the criticism that Perrault is aiming at: "Another moral: Without doubt it is a great advantage to have intelligence, courage, good breeding, and common sense. These, and similar talents come only from heaven, and it is good to have them. However, even these may fail to bring you success, without the blessing of a godfather or a godmother."
Aschenputtel, by the Brothers Grimm
Another well-known version was recorded by the German brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm in the 19th century. The tale is called "Aschenputtel" ("Cinderella" in English translations) and the help comes not from a fairy-godmother but the wishing tree that grows on her mother's grave.
- A wealthy gentleman's wife lay on her deathbed, and called her only daughter to her bedside. She asked her to remain good and kind, and told her that God would protect her. She then died and was buried. A year went by and the widower married another woman, who had two daughters of her own. They had beautiful faces and fair skin, but their hearts were cruel and wicked. The stepsisters stole the girl's fine clothes and jewels and forced her to wear rags. They banished her into the kitchen to do the worst chores, and gave her the nickname "Aschenputtel" ("Ashfool".) Despite all of this the girl remained good and kind, and would always go to her mother's grave to cry and pray to God that she would see her circumstances improve.
- One day, the gentleman visited a fair, promising his stepdaughters gifts of luxury. The eldest asked for beautiful dresses, while the younger for pearls and diamonds. His own daughter merely asked for the first twig to knock his hat off on the way. The gentleman went on his way, and acquires presents for his stepdaughters. While passing a forest he got a hazel twig, and gave it to his daughter. She planted the twig over her mother's grave, watered it with her tears and over the years, it grew into a glowing hazel tree. The girl would pray under it three times a day, and a white bird would always come to comfort her.
- The king decided to give a festival that would last for three whole days and nights, and invited all the beautiful maidens in the land to attend so that the prince could select one of them as his bride. The two sisters were also invited, but when Aschenputtel begged them to allow her to go with them into the celebration, the stepmother refused because she had no dress nor shoes to wear. When the girl insisted, the woman threw a dish of lentils into the ashes for her to pick up, guaranteeing her permission to attend the festival, and when the girl accomplished the task in less than an hour with the help of two white doves sent by her mother from Heaven, the stepmother only redoubled the task and threw down even a greater quantity of lentils. When Aschenputtel was able to accomplish it in a greater speed, not wanting to spoil her daughters' chances, the stepmother hastened away with them to the ball and left the crying stepdaughter behind.
- The girl retreated to the graveyard to ask for help. The white bird dropped a white gown and silk shoes. She went to the ball, with the warning that she must leave before midnight. The prince danced with her, but she eluded him before midnight struck. The next evening, the girl appeared in a much grander gown of silver and glass shoes. The prince fell in love with her and danced with her for the whole evening, but when midnight came, she left again. The third evening, she appeared dressed in spun gold with slippers of gold. Now the prince was determined to keep her, and had the entire stairway smeared with pitch. Aschenputtel lost track of time, and when she ran away one of her golden slippers got stuck on that pitch. The prince proclaimed that he would marry the maiden whose foot would fit the golden slipper.
- The next morning, the prince went to Aschenputtel's house and tried the slipper on the eldest stepsister. The sister was advised by her mother to cut off her toes in order to fit the slipper. While riding with the stepsister, the two doves from Heaven told the Prince that blood dripped from her foot. Appalled by her treachery, he went back again and tried the slipper on the other stepsister. She cut off part of her heel in order to get her foot in the slipper, and again the prince was fooled. While riding with her to the king's castle, the doves alerted him again about the blood on her foot. He came back to inquire about another girl. The gentleman told him that they kept a kitchen-maid in the house – omitting to mention that she was his own daughter – and the prince asked him to let her try on the slipper. The girl appeared after washing herself, and when she put on the slipper, the prince recognized her as the stranger with whom he had danced at the ball.
- In the end, during Aschenputtel's wedding, as she was walking down the aisle with her stepsisters as her bridesmaids, (they had hoped to worm their way into her favour), the doves from Heaven flew down and struck the two stepsisters' eyes, one in the left and the other in the right. When the wedding came to an end, and Aschenputtel and her prince marched out of the church, the doves flew again, striking the remaining eyes of the two evil sisters blind, a punishment they had to endure for the rest of their lives.
Aschenputtel's relationship with her father in this version is ambiguous; Perrault's version states that the absent father is dominated by his second wife, explaining why he does not prevent the abuse of his daughter. However, the father in this tale plays an active role in several scenes, and it is not explained why he tolerates the mistreatment of his child. He also describes Aschenputtel as his "first wife's child" and not his own.
Plot variations and alternative tellings
Villains: In some versions, her father plays an active role in the humiliation of his daughter; in others, he is secondary to his new wife; in some versions, especially the popular Disney film, the father has died.
Although many variants of Cinderella feature the wicked stepmother, the defining trait of type 510A is a female persecutor: in Fair, Brown and Trembling and Finette Cendron, the stepmother does not appear at all, and it is the older sisters who confine her to the kitchen. In other fairy tales featuring the ball, she was driven from home by the persecutions of her father, usually because he wished to marry her. Of this type (510B) are Cap O' Rushes, Catskin, All-Kinds-of-Fur, and Allerleirauh, and she slaves in the kitchen because she found a job there. In Katie Woodencloak, the stepmother drives her from home, and she likewise finds such a job.
In La Cenerentola, Gioachino Rossini inverted the sex roles: Cenerentola is oppressed by her stepfather. (This makes the opera Aarne-Thompson type 510B.) He also made the economic basis for such hostility unusually clear, in that Don Magnifico wishes to make his own daughters' dowries larger, to attract a grander match, which is impossible if he must provide a third dowry. Folklorists often interpret the hostility between the stepmother and stepdaughter as just such a competition for resources, but seldom does the tale make it clear.
Ball, Ballgown, and Curfew: The number of balls varies, sometimes one, sometimes two, and sometimes three. The fairy godmother is Perrault's own addition to the tale. The person who aided Cinderella (Aschenputtel) in the Grimms's version is her dead mother. Aschenputtel requests her aid by praying at her grave, on which a tree is growing. Helpful doves roosting in the tree shake down the clothing she needs for the ball. This motif is found in other variants of the tale as well, such as The Cinder Maid, collected by Joseph Jacobs, and the Finnish The Wonderful Birch. Playwright James Lapine incorporated this motif into the Cinderella plotline of the musical Into the Woods. Giambattista Basile's Cenerentola combined them; the Cinderella figure, Zezolla, asks her father to commend her to the Dove of Fairies and ask her to send her something, and she receives a tree that will provide her clothing. Other variants have her helped by talking animals, as in Katie Woodencloak, Rushen Coatie, Bawang Putih Bawang Merah, The Story of Tam and Cam, or The Sharp Grey Sheep—these animals often having some connection with her dead mother; in The Golden Slipper, a fish aids her after she puts it in water. In "The Anklet", it's a magical alabaster pot the girl purchased with her own money that brings her the gowns and the anklets she wears to the ball. Gioachino Rossini, having agreed to do an opera based on Cinderella if he could omit all magical elements, wrote La Cenerentola, in which she was aided by Alidoro, a philosopher and formerly the Prince's tutor.
The midnight curfew is also absent in many versions; Cinderella leaves the ball to get home before her stepmother and stepsisters, or she is simply tired. In the Grimms' version, Aschenputtel slips away when she is tired, hiding on her father's estate in a tree, and then the pigeon coop, to elude her pursuers; her father tries to catch her by chopping them down, but she escapes.
Furthermore, the gathering need not be a ball; several variants on Cinderella, such as Katie Woodencloak and The Golden Slipper have her attend church.
In the three-ball version, Cinderella keeps a close watch on the time the first two nights and is able to leave without difficulty. However, on the third (or only) night, she loses track of the time and must flee the castle before her disguise vanishes. In her haste, she loses a glass slipper which the prince finds—or else the prince has carefully had her exit tarred, so as to catch her, and the slipper is caught in it.
The Identifing item: The glass slipper is unique to Charles Perrault's version and its derivatives; in other versions of the tale it may be made of other materials (in the version recorded by the Brothers Grimm, German: Aschenbroedel and Aschenputtel, for instance, it is gold) and in still other tellings, it is not a slipper but an anklet, a ring, or a bracelet that gives the prince the key to Cinderella's identity. In Rossini's opera "La Cenerentola" ("Cinderella"), the slipper is replaced by twin bracelets to prove her identity. In the Finnish variant The Wonderful Birch the prince uses tar to gain something every ball, and so has a ring, a circlet, and a pair of slippers. Interpreters unaware of the value attached to glass in 17th century France and perhaps troubled by sartorial impracticalities, have suggested that Perrault's "glass slipper" (pantoufle de verre) had been a "fur slipper" (pantoufle de vair) in some unidentified earlier version of the tale, and that Perrault or one of his sources confused the words; however, most scholars believe the glass slipper was a deliberate piece of poetic invention on Perrault's part. The 1950 Disney adaptation takes advantage of the slipper being made of glass to add a twist whereby the slipper is shattered just before Cinderella has the chance to try it on, leaving her with only the matching slipper with which to prove her identity.
Another interpretation of verre/vair (glass/fur) suggested a sexual element - the Prince was 'trying on' the 'fur slipper' (vagina) of the maidens in the kingdom, as a 'droit de seigneur' right of sexual possession of his subjects. The disguised Cinderella's 'fur slipper' was of unique appeal to the Prince who sought her thereafter through sexual congress (a variety of sources including Joan Gould).
The translation of the story into cultures with different standards of beauty has left the significance of Cinderella's shoe size unclear, and resulted in the implausibility of Cinderella's feet being of a unique size for no particular reason. Humorous retellings of the story sometimes use the twist of having the shoes turn out to also fit somebody completely unsuitable, such as an amorous old crone. In Terry Pratchett's Witches Abroad, the witches accuse another witch of manipulating the events because it was a common shoe size, and she could only ensure that the right woman put it on if she already knew where she was and went straight to her. In "When the Clock Strikes" (from Red As Blood), Tanith Lee had the sorcerous shoe alter shape whenever a woman tried to put it on, so it would not fit.
The Revelation: Cinderella's stepmother and stepsisters (in some versions just the stepsisters and, in some other versions, a stepfather and stepsisters) conspire to win the prince's hand for one of them. In the German telling, the first stepsister fits into the slipper by cutting off a toe, but the doves in the hazel tree alert the prince to the blood dripping from the slipper, and he returns the false bride to her mother. The second stepsister fits into the slipper by cutting off her heel, but the same doves give her away.
In many variants of the tale, the prince is told that Cinderella can not possibly be the one, as she is too dirty and ragged. Often, this is said by the stepmother or stepsisters. In the Grimms' version, both the stepmother and the father urge it. The prince nevertheless insists on her trying. Cinderella arrives and proves her identity by fitting into the slipper or other item (in some cases she has kept the other).
The Conclusion: In the German version of the story, the evil stepsisters are punished for their deception by having their eyes pecked out by birds. In other versions, they are forgiven, and made ladies-in-waiting with marriages to lesser lords.
In The Thousand Nights and A Night, in a tale called "The Anklet", the stepsisters make a comeback by using twelve magical hairpins to turn the bride into a dove on her wedding night. In The Wonderful Birch, the stepmother, a witch, manages to substitute her daughter for the true bride after she has given birth. Such tales continue the fairy tale into what is in effect a second episode.
In an episode of Jim Henson's The Storyteller, writer Anthony Minghella merged the old folk tale Donkeyskin (also written by Perrault) with Cinderella to tell the tale of Sapsorrow, a girl both cursed and blessed by destiny.
There is also Gregory Maguire's novel Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister, which gives the classic story from the view of one of the ugly stepsisters. In this version, the Cinderella character is unusually beautiful, but also a shy enigma. Her stepsister, though plain, is charming and intelligent. The novel has themes much more adult than the traditional story.
Gail Carson Levine wrote Ella Enchanted, a story how "Ella" is under a fairy curse of obedience (she does whatever someone tells her to). A movie also has been made based on this book.
Folklorists have long studied variants on this tale across cultures. In 1893, Marian Roalfe Cox, commissioned by the Folklore Society of Britain, produced Cinderella: Three Hundred and Forty-Five Variants of Cinderella, Catskin and, Cap o'Rushes, Abstracted and Tabulated with a Discussion of Medieval Analogues and Notes.
The Aarne–Thompson system classifies Cinderella as type 510A, "the persecuted heroine". Others of this type include The Sharp Grey Sheep, The Golden Slipper, The Story of Tam and Cam, Rushen Coatie, The Wonderful Birch, Fair, Brown and Trembling and Katie Woodencloak.
The story of Cinderella has formed the basis of many notable works:
Opera and ballet
- Cendrillon (1749) by Jean-Louis Laruette
- Cendrillon (1810) by Nicolas Isouard, libretto by Charles-Guillaume Étienne
- Agatina o La virtù premiata (1814) by Stefano Pavesi
- La Cenerentola (1817) by Gioachino Rossini
- Aschenbrödel (1845) by Gustav Köckert
- Aschenbrödel (1878) by Ferdinand Langer
- Cendrillon (1894–5) by Jules Massenet, libretto by Henri Caïn
- Cinderella (1901–2) by Gustav Holst
- La Cenerentola (1902) by Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari
- Cendrillon (1904) by Pauline García-Viardot
- Aschenbrödel (1905) by Leo Blech, libretto by Richard Batka
- La Cenicienta (1966) by Jorge Peña Hen
- Cinderella, a "pantomime opera" (1979) by Peter Maxwell Davies
- Cinderella (1893) by Baron Boris Vietinghoff-Scheel
- Aschenbrödel (1901) by Johann Strauss II, adapted and completed by Josef Bayer
- Das Märchen vom Aschenbrödel (1941) by Frank Martin
- Soluschka or Cinderella (1945) by Sergei Prokofiev
- Cinderella (1980) by Paul Reade
- My First Cinderella (2013) directed by George Williamson and Loipa Araújo
- Cinderella (2013), adapted by Christopher Wheeldon, with puppetry by Basil Twist, set to the Prokofiev score
- Cinderella debuted as a pantomime on stage at the Drury Lane Theatre, London in 1904 and at the Adelphi Theatre in London in 1905. Phyllis Dare, aged 14 or 15, starred in the latter. In the traditional pantomime version the opening scene takes place in a forest with a hunt in progress; here Cinderella first meets Prince Charming and his "right-hand man" Dandini, whose name and character come from Gioachino Rossini's opera (La Cenerentola). Cinderella mistakes Dandini for the Prince and the Prince for Dandini. Her father, Baron Hardup, is under the thumb of his two stepdaughters, the Ugly sisters, and has a servant, Cinderella's friend Buttons. (Throughout the pantomime, the Baron is continually harassed by the Broker's Men (often named after current politicians) for outstanding rent.) The Fairy Godmother must magically create a coach (from a pumpkin), footmen (from mice), a coach driver (from a frog), and a beautiful dress (from rags) for Cinderella to go to the ball. However, she must return by midnight, as it is then that the spell ceases.
- Cinderella by Rodgers and Hammerstein was produced for television three times and staged live. A version ran in 1958 at the London Coliseum with a cast including Tommy Steele, Yana, Jimmy Edwards, Kenneth Williams and Betty Marsden. This version was augmented with several other Rodgers and Hammerstein's songs plus a song written by Tommy Steele, "You and Me". In 2013, the musical debuted its first Broadway production with a new book by Douglas Carter Beane.
- Mr. Cinders, a musical which opened at the Adelphi Theatre, London in 1929. Filmed in 1934
- Into the Woods by Stephen Sondheim (1988), in which Cinderella is one of many fairy-tale characters who take part in the plot. This is partly based on the Grimm Brothers' version of "Cinderella", including the enchanted birds, mother's grave, three balls, and mutilation and blinding of the stepsisters.
- Cindy, a 1964 Off-Broadway musical composed by Johnny Brandon
- Cinderella; book by Norman Robbins; lyrics by Amy Powers and Dan Levy; music by Dan Levy; opened Off Broadway December 19, 1991 at Playhouse 91
Films and television
Over the decades, hundreds of films have been made that are either direct adaptations from Cinderella or have plots loosely based on the story.
- Cinderella (1899), the first film version, produced in France by Georges Méliès, as "Cendrillon".
- Cinderella (1911), a silent film starring Florence La Badie
- Cinderella, the Glass Slipper (1912) [Cendrillon, ou la pantoufle merveilleuse], another silent film made by Georges Méliès.
- Cinderella (1914), a silent film starring Mary Pickford
- Aschenputtel (1922), a silhouette shadow play short by Lotte Reiniger. The short silent film uses exaggerated figures and has no background, which creates a stark look. The film shows Aschenputtel's step-sisters graphically hacking their feet off in order to fit into the glass slipper.
- Cinderella (1922), an animated Laugh-O-Gram produced by Walt Disney, first released on December 6, 1922. This film was about 75 minutes long.
- Ella Cinders (1926), a modern tale starring Colleen Moore, based on a comic strip by William M. Conselman and Charles Plumb, inspired by Charles Perrault's version.
- Cinderella Blues (1931), a Van Beuren animated short film featuring a feline version of the Cinderella character.
- Poor Cinderella (1934), Fleischer Studios' first color cartoon and only appearance of Betty Boop in color during the Fleischer era.
- Cinderella Meets Fella (1938), a Merrie Melodies animated short film featuring Egghead, the character who would eventually evolve into Elmer Fudd, as Prince Charming.
- First Love (1939), a musical modernization with Deanna Durbin and Robert Stack.
- Cinderella (1950), a Disney animated feature released on February 15, 1950, now considered one of Disney's classics as well as the most well known film adaptation.
- Ancient Fistory (1953), an animation short in which "cinderfella" Popeye courts princess Olive Oyl.
- Aschenputtel (1955), a West German film, dubbed into English and released in the USA in 1966 as Cinderella.
- The Glass Slipper (1955), feature film with Leslie Caron and Michael Wilding
- Cinderella (1957), a musical adaptation by Rodgers and Hammerstein, starring Julie Andrews as Cinderella, featuring Jon Cypher, Kaye Ballard, Alice Ghostley, and Edie Adams (originally broadcast in color, but only black-and-white kinescopes survive).
- Cinderella (1965), the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical was again produced for television, starring 18-year-old Lesley Ann Warren in the leading role, and featuring Stuart Damon as the Prince, with Ginger Rogers, Walter Pidgeon, and Celeste Holm (filmed in color and broadcast annually for 10 years).
- Hey, Cinderella! (1969), a television adaptation featuring The Muppets.
- Three Wishes for Cinderella (Tři oříšky pro Popelku) (1973), a Czechoslovakian/East German fairy tale film starring Libuše Šafránková as Cinderella and Pavel Trávníček as Prince. A cult film in several European countries.
- The Slipper and the Rose (1976), a British Sherman Brothers musical film starring Gemma Craven and Richard Chamberlain.
- A loose adaptation of the Grimm Brothers' version appears in the 1987 anime Grimm's Fairy Tale Classics.
- Cindy (1978), This version of the Cinderella tale with an all-black cast has Cinderella, who wants to marry a dashing army officer, finding out out that her father, who she thought had an important job at a big hotel, is actually the men's room attendant. Her wicked stepmother finds out, too, and complications ensue. Charlayne Woodard.
- In 1985, Shelley Duvall produced a version of the story for Faerie Tale Theatre.
- Aschenputtel (1989), a television adaptation based on the Grimm Brothers' version.
- If The Shoe Fits (1990), a modern Cinderella in Paris.
- Cinderella Monogatari (1996), anime TV series co-produced by Mondo TV and Tatsunoko Production
- Cinderella (1997), Rodgers and Hammerstein musical starring Brandy Norwood as Cinderella, Whitney Houston as the Fairy Godmother, Bernadette Peters as the Stepmother, Jason Alexander as Lionel the valet and Whoopi Goldberg as the Queen. Remake of the 1957 and 1965 TV films.
- Ever After (1998), starring Drew Barrymore, a post-feminist take on the Cinderella story.
- Cinderella (2000), a British modernization featuring Marcella Plunkett as Cinderella, Kathleen Turner as the stepmother and Jane Birkin as the fairy godmother.
- A Cinderella Story (2004), a modernization featuring Hilary Duff and Chad Michael Murray
- "Lucky Star (manga)" (2007), spoofed in the Lucky Star anime OVA as "Tsundere-lla" or "Kagami's Dream", where main protagonist Konata Izumi takes the role of the fairy Godmother and main character Kagami Hiiragi takes the role of Cinderella.
- Another Cinderella Story (2008), a modernization featuring Selena Gomez and Drew Seeley
- Elle: A Modern Cinderella Tale (2010), a modernization featuring Ashlee Hewitt and Sterling Knight
- Aschenputtel (2010 film), a German film
- A Cinderella Story: Once Upon a Song (2011), a modernization featuring Lucy Hale and Freddie Stroma
Contrary to popular belief, the 2004 film Ella Enchanted is based on a book of the same name, and not a retelling of Cinderella. However, the said book is an imaginative retelling of the classic tale.
- Once Upon a Time (2011), played by Jessy Schram.
- Rags (film) (2012), a musical gender switched inversion of the Cinderella story that stars Keke Palmer and Max Schneider.
- A Princess for Christmas is a loose version that takes place over the holiday. Katie McGrath's character is like Cinderella
- Aik Nayee Cinderella (2013), a Pakistani serial aired on Geo TV.
- "The Royal Flip-Flop" (2014), a Jordanian film adaptation set in the 16th Century.
- Into the Woods (2014), a live-action fairy-tale-themed musical adaptation, in which Anna Kendrick's Cinderella is a central character.
- Cinderella (2015), a live-action film starring Lily James and for release on March 13, 2015.
- Cinderella was spoofed in the Family Guy episode "Grimm Job".
- The fairytale was retold the Pretty Cure series of magical girl anime twice.
- Cinderella adaptations on TV and in cinema are not just limited to female protagonists. The Sesame Street special "Cinderelmo" and the Magic Adventures of Mumfie episode "Scarecrowella" both feature a male protagonist playing the Cinderella role.
- "Cinderella Stay Awhile" a song by Michael Jackson from his 1975 album Forever, Michael.
- "Cinderella Man" by Rush from their 1977 album "A Farewell to Kings".
- Cinderella by Firefall, released 1977.
- Cinderella by Vince Gill, released 1987.
- Hey Cinderella (1993) by Suzy Bogguss.
- It's Midnight Cinderella by Garth Brooks from his 1996 album "Fresh Horses".
- Cinderella a song by Britney Spears from her 2001 album Britney.
- Cinderella, a 2001 single by Sweetbox.
- Cinderella by Shakaya, released 2002.
- Cinderella a 2002 single by Play and covered by The Cheetah Girls in 2003.
- A Cinderella Story by Mudvayne's fourth album The New Game (2008).
- Cinderella by Steven Curtis Chapman
- Cinderella from the Broadway musical 110 in the Shade by Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt
- Cinderella's Eyes a song by Nicola Roberts from her debut homonymous album Cinderella's Eyes
- Stealing Cinderella by Chuck Wicks from Starting Now album January 22, 2008
- Cendrellion written by Signal-P and Orange sung by Hatsune Miku and Kaito(2008)
- The theme song to the anime series Himitsu no Akko-chan, as well as the opening animation sequence, makes reference to the fairy tale as well
- "Cinderella Man" by Eminem
|Bulgarian||Пепеляшка||Pepelyashka (from Пепел – Ashes)|
|German||Aschenputtel (or Aschenbrödel)|
|Greek||Σταχτοπούτα||Stachtopoúta (from Στάχτη – Ashes)|
|Lao||ຊັງດຣີຢົງ or ຊັງດີຢົງ||Sangdriyong|
|Norwegian (bokmål)||Askepott (Originally the name of Askeladden)|
|Norwegian (nynorsk)||Oskepott (Originally the name of Oskeladden)|
|Russian||Золушка||Zolushka (from Зола – Ashes)|
|Ukrainian||Попелюшка||Popelyushka (from Попіл – Ashes)|
The Aarne–Thompson system classifies Cinderella as type 510A, "the persecuted heroine". Variants of the theme are known throughout the world.
The Cinderella motif may well have originated in classical antiquity. The Greek geographer Strabo recorded in the 1st century BC in his Geographica (book 17, 33) the tale of the Greek slave girl Rhodopis, "Rosey-Eyes", who lived in the colony of Naucratis in Ancient Egypt. It is often considered the oldest known version of the story:
They tell the fabulous story that, when she was bathing, an eagle snatched one of her sandals from her maid and carried it to Memphis; and while the king was administering justice in the open air, the eagle, when it arrived above his head, flung the sandal into his lap; and the king, stirred both by the beautiful shape of the sandal and by the strangeness of the occurrence, sent men in all directions into the country in quest of the woman who wore the sandal; and when she was found in the city of Naucratis, she was brought up to Memphis, became the wife of the king ...
Herodotus, some five centuries before Strabo, supplied information about the real-life Rhodopis in his Histories. He wrote that Rhodopis came from Thrace, and was the slave of Iadmon of Samos, and a fellow-slave of the story-teller Aesop. She was taken to Egypt in the time of Pharaoh Amasis, and freed there for a large sum by Charaxus of Mytilene, brother of Sappho the lyric poet.
Aspects of Cinderella may be derived from the story of Cordelia in Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae. Cordelia is the youngest and most virtuous of King Leir of Britain's three daughters, however her virtue is such that it will not allow her to lie in flattering her father when he asks, so that he divides up the kingdom between the elder daughters and leaves Cordelia with nothing. Cordelia marries her love, Aganippus, King of the Franks, and flees to Gaul where she and her husband raise an army and depose her wicked sisters who have been misusing their father. Cordelia is finally crowned Queen of Britain. However her reign only lasts five years. The story is famously retold in Shakespeare's King Lear, but given a tragic ending.
Another version of the story, Ye Xian, appeared in Miscellaneous Morsels from Youyang by Duan Chengshi around 860. Here, the hardworking and lovely girl befriends a fish, the reincarnation of her mother, who was killed by her stepmother and sister. Ye Xian saves the bones, which are magic, and they help her dress appropriately for a festival. When she loses her slipper after being recognized by her stepfamily, the king finds her slipper and made her his first wife (eventually rescuing her from her cruel stepmother).
The Indonesian and Malaysian story Bawang Merah Bawang Putih, are about two girls named Bawang Putih (literally "White Onion", meaning "garlic") and Bawang Merah ("Red Onion"). While the two country's respective versions differ in the exact relationship of the girls and the identity of the protagonist, they have highly similar plot elements. Both have a magical fish as the "fairy godmother" to her daughter, which the antagonist cooks. The heroine then finds the bones and buries them, and over the grave a magical swing appears. The protagonist sits on the swing and sings to make it sway, her song reaching the ears of a passing Prince. The swing is akin to the slipper test, which distinguishes the heroine from her evil sister, and the Prince weds her in the end.
In the Vietnamese version Tam Cam, Tam is mistreated by both her father's co-wife and half-sister, who stole her birthright by winning a wager of fishing unjustly proposed by the stepmother. The only fish that was left to her was killed and eaten by her step-family, but its bones served as her protector and guardian, eventually leading her to be the king's bride during a festival. The protagonist however, turns into the antagonist in part two of the story, by boiling her stepsister alive and then fooling her stepmother into cannibalism by feeding her her own daughter's flesh.
There is a Korean version named Kongji and Patzzi. It deals a story about a kind girl Kongji who was constantly abused by her stepmother and stepsister Patzzi. The step-family forces Kongjwi to stay at home while they attend the king's ball, but a fairy appears and gives her an attire more beautiful than everyone else. The motif is same as in Perrault, concerning a king falling in love with her. However, the story goes on with Patzzi drowning Kongji in a river and disguising herself as Kongji to live with the King. After the king finds out he puts Patzzi to death and feeds her to the unknowing stepmother.
Several different variants of the story appear in the medieval One Thousand and One Nights, also known as the Arabian Nights, including "The Second Shaykh's Story", "The Eldest Lady's Tale" and "Abdallah ibn Fadil and His Brothers", all dealing with the theme of a younger sibling harassed by two jealous elders. In some of these, the siblings are female, while in others, they are male. One of the tales, "Judar and His Brethren", departs from the happy endings of previous variants and reworks the plot to give it a tragic ending instead, with the younger brother being poisoned by his elder brothers.
- Bottigheimer, Ruth. (2008). "Before Contes du temps passe (1697): Charles Perrault's Griselidis, Souhaits and Peau". The Romantic Review, Volume 99, Number 3. pp. 175–89
- Zipes, Jack (2001). The Great Fairy Tale Tradition: From Straparola and Basile to the Brothers Grimm. W. W. Norton & Co. p. 444. ISBN 978-0-393-97636-6.
- Dundes, Alan. Cinderella, a Casebook. Madison, Wis: University of Wisconsin Press, 1988.
- Roger Lancelyn Green: Tales of Ancient Egypt, Penguin UK, 2011, ISBN 978-0-14-133822-4, chapter The Land of Egypt
- Basile, Giambattista (1911). Stories from Pentamerone, London: Macmillan & Co., translated by John Edward Taylor. Chapter 6. See also "Il Pentamerone: Cenerentola"
- A modern edition of the original French text by Perrault is found in Charles Perrault, Contes, ed. Marc Soriano (Paris: Flammarion, 1989), pp. 274–79.
- "Perrault: Cinderella; or, The Little Glass Slipper". Pitt.edu. 2003-10-08. Retrieved 2014-06-17.
- Aschenputtel, included in Household Stories by the Brothers Grimm, translated by Lucy Crane, at Project Gutenberg
- Heidi Anne Heiner, "Tales Similar to Donkeyskin"
- Marina Warner, From the Beast to the Blonde: On Fairy Tales And Their Tellers, p 213-4 ISBN 0-374-15901-7
- Jane Yolen, p 23, Touch Magic ISBN 0-87483-591-7
- Maria Tatar, The Annotated Brothers Grimm, p 116 W. W. Norton & company, London, New York, 2004 ISBN 0-393-05848-4
- Maria Tatar, p 28, The Annotated Classic Fairy Tales, ISBN 0-393-05163-3
- Maria Tatar, The Annotated Brothers Grimm, p 126-8 W. W. Norton & company, London, New York, 2004 ISBN 0-393-05848-4
- Mardrus, Joseph-Charles; Powys Mathers (June 1987). The book of the Thousand Nights and One Night 4. London and New York: Routledge. pp. 191–194. ISBN 0-415-04543-6.
- "If The Shoe Fits: Folklorists' criteria for #510"
- Heidi Anne Heiner, "Tales Similar to Cinderella"
- Kourlas, Gia (October 24, 2013). "A Fairy Tale Heroine Finds Her Magic Tree". New York Times.
- Off Broadway Musicals 1910-2007, by Dan Dietz
- "Aschenputtel". YouTube.com.
- "YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2013-09-23.
- "Three wishes for Cinderella (1973)". Imdb.com.
- "Aschenputtel". Imdb.com.
- "If the Shoe Fits". Imdb.com.
- Strabo: "The Geography", book 17, 33
- Anderson, Graham (2000). Fairytale in the ancient world. Routledge. p. 27. ISBN 978-0-415-23702-4. Retrieved 25 March 2010.
- Herodot, "The Histories", book 2, chapters 134-135
- Aelian: "Various History", book 13, chapter 33
- Ulrich Marzolph, Richard van Leeuwen, Hassan Wassouf (2004). The Arabian Nights Encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO. p. 4. ISBN 1-57607-204-5.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Cinderella.|
|Wikisource has original text related to this article:|
|Wikisource has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article Cinderella.|
- Project Gutenberg compilation, including original Cendrillon
- Photos and illustrations from early Cinderella stage versions, including one with Ellaline Terriss and one with Phyllis Dare
- Parallel German-English text of brothers Grimm's version in ParallelBook format