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1001 Stories Collection

Little Red Riding Hood

1001 littleredridinghood
Added on 01st July 2020

Oral tradition European folktale
First written version 1697 in Charles Perrault’s Histoires ou Contes du temps passé

Whispering Wood Europe Animals Folk and fairy tales
1001 , Audio , Text

A famous fairy tale which tells the story of a young girl with a distinctive red hood, her sick grandmother, who she sets out to visit and the wolf she meets in the woods.

Story

When walking through the woods to visit her ill grandmother, Little Red Riding Hood encounters a wolf. The wolf runs ahead to get to grandmother’s house first and when Red Riding Hood knocks on the door, there is a surprise waiting for her…

Why we chose it

When we asked visitors to the museum to tell us their favourite fairy stories Little Red Riding Hood was second only to Cinderella. The dialogue between Red Riding Hood and the Wolf in grandma’s bed has become an iconic story moment.

Where it came from

The story existed orally long before Perrault wrote it down but there is not enough evidence to date it firmly. Versions of it or tales with similar themes are found across Europe. Charles Perrault’s Le Petit Chaperon Rouge is the first known version of the tale written down. The Grimm brother’s version, Rotkäppchen (Little Red Cap), written down in 1812, has a different ending to Perrault’s, in which Red Riding Hood and her grandmother are cut out of the wolf’s belly and saved by the huntsman. Both reinforce the moral of avoiding strange creatures and “keeping to the path”.

Where it went next

After Perrault’s version it appeared in eighteenth century collections of fairy tales. It has remained one of the best loved well known stories. It appears in Andrew Lang’s The Red Fairy Book (1890). The tale inspired Roald Dahl’s Revolting Rhymes (1982). More recently it was adapted in the film Hoodwinked.

Associated stories

The wolf is commonly the villain in traditional stories such as The Three Little Pigs, What’s the time, Mr Wolf?, and The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids.

In the museum

Find the story in one of the trees in The Whispering Wood.

Added on 01st July 2020

Oral tradition European folktale
First written version 1697 in Charles Perrault’s Histoires ou Contes du temps passé

Whispering Wood Europe Animals Folk and fairy tales
1001 , Audio , Text

Story Resources

  • Little Red Riding Hood story text PDF (37.496 KB)
    Download