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Beauty and the Beast (Forgotten Books) by…

Beauty and the Beast (Forgotten Books) (original 1757; edition 2008)

by Jeanne Marie Le Prince de Beaumont

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4711821,964 (3.94)9
Title:Beauty and the Beast (Forgotten Books)
Authors:Jeanne Marie Le Prince de Beaumont
Info:Forgotten Books (2008), Paperback, 28 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Kindle book

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Beauty and the Beast by Jeanne-Marie Le Prince de Beaumont (1757)



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A classic French 18th century version (it's not the original) of the fairy tale. Beauty and the Beast is one of my favourites ever since I saw the Disney movie as a child. Classic versions and reworking alike are stories I want to read. This has to be one of the better versions I've read, which goes into more detail than most. I loved the sisters' punishment!

Favourite Quotes

The definition of a monster
"Yes, yes, (said the Beast,) my heart is good, but still I am a monster."
"Among mankind, (says Beauty,) there are many that deserve that name more than you, and I prefer you, just as you are, to those, who, under a human form, hide a treacherous, corrupt, and ungrateful heart."

On the kindness of sisters
"In what is this little creature better than us, that she should be so much happier?"
"Sister, (said the eldest,) a thought has just strikes my mind; let us endeavour to detain her above a week, and perhaps the silly monster will be so enraged at her for breaking her word, that he will devour her."
"Right, sister, (answered the other,) therefore we must show her as much kindness as possible."

On the qualities of a perfect husband
"Why did I refuse him? I should be happier with the monster than my sisters are with their husbands; it is neither wit nor a fine person in a husband, that makes a woman happy; but virtue, sweetness of temper, and complaisance, and Beast has all these valuable qualifications. It is true, I do no feel the tenderness of affection for him, but I find I have the highest gratitude, esteem, and friendship; and I will not make him miserable; were I to be so ungrateful, I should never forgive myself."

You get what you deserve
"Beauty. (said this lady,) come and receive the reward of your judicious choice; you have preferred virtue over wit or beauty, and deserve to find a person in whom all these qualifications are united: you are going to be a great Queen; I hope the throne will not lessen your virtue, or make you forget yourself."

Is it possible to change a leopard's spots?
"Pride, anger, gluttony, and idleness, are sometimes conquered, but the conversion of a malicious and envious mind is a kind of miracle." ( )
  Cynical_Ames | Sep 23, 2014 |
I love Beauty and the Beast, but I'd never actually read it, I'd only ever seen the Disney movie adaption. So I decided to read it this month, and I'm glad I did. It's such a quick read, but it was really good. I liked the story a lot.

For a full review please see my blog at http://www.thebooktower.webs.com ( )
  bookish92 | Mar 20, 2014 |
A quick read. The point seemed to be that good things happen to kind hard working young women especially if they seek out ugly dull men (or, at least, men not overcome with their own beauty and wit) with kind hearts, good temperments and being a little overdramatic about the actions of others. Threatening to kill, no, promising to kill a man for taking a rose, unless that man gave up a daughter to die in his place. Later starving himself because the woman he kind of likes is late returning by three days.

Written in another era, Beast would be seen as an overly dramatic overly emotional bully. Emo.

Beauty being overly selfless, intelligent, hard working young woman.

A match made in heaven, I'm sure. ( )
  Lexxi | Jan 19, 2014 |
Beauty and the Beast, illustrated by Hilary Knight.

Originally published in 1756, as part of her Magasin des enfants, ou dialogues entre une sage gouvernante et plusieurs de ses élèves, which was then translated into English in 1757 ("The Young Misses Magazine, or, Dialogues Between a Discreet Governess and Several Young Ladies of the First Rank Under Her Education"), Mme. Le Prince de Beaumont's Beauty and the Beast is the version of this popular story with which most modern readers are familiar. Although not the first written version of the tale - Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve published a much lengthier version in 1740, as part of her La jeune ameriquaine, et les contes marins (translations of both versions can be found in Jack Zipes' excellent Beauties, Beasts and Enchantments: Classic French Fairy Tales) - it was the one to survive in the popular mind, the one that was most influential, in the evolution of the story over time.

This picture-book contains the complete original story by Le Prince de Beaumont, translated by Richard Howard, and illustrated by the celebrated American artist, Hilary Knight. It also includes a brief afterword by French filmmaker Jean Cocteau, whose black and white film adaptation of this story is considered a classic of the genre. As always, I enjoyed the story, being struck, in the course of this reading, by the presence of Beauty's three loving brothers. I don't think I'd ever really considered them before (some retellings leave them out altogether), but suddenly I found myself wondering about them, and whether any revisionist take had ever concentrated on them...

In any case, despite my enjoyment of the text - not the best translation ever, but readable enough - I wasn't that taken with Knight's illustrations. I was surprised by this, as I did appreciate his retelling of Cinderella, but somehow, this artwork just wasn't for me. I found the Beast here interesting - he had a sort of horned, "Green Man" appearance - but I can't say that the rest of it, from human figures to background settings, appealed to me greatly. In fact, I found some scenes rather repellent - not so much because they were grotesque, but because they departed so thoroughly from my own internal vision of the tale. Still, tastes vary, so fans of the illustrator might still want to peruse this particular illustrated edition. They might also want to seek out the versions (also fairly faithful to the original narrative) illustrated by Diane Goode or Binette Schroeder, to see how other artists have dealt with the same themes. ( )
1 vote AbigailAdams26 | Apr 8, 2013 |
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» Add other authors (75 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jeanne-Marie Le Prince de Beaumontprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Knight, HilaryIllustratormain authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cocteau, JeanAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ducornet, EricaIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Goode, DianeIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Howard, RichardTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Maňásek, LuděkIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Muir, P.H.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sanderson, RuthIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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There was once a very rich merchant, who had six children, three sons, and three daughters; being a man of sense, he spared no cost for their education, but gave them all kinds of masters.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Please do not combine any abridged/adapted versions into this entry. Thanks!
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0766608263, Hardcover)

Jeanne Marie Le Prince de Beaumont was a French novelist born in 1711. After her first marriage was annulled she moved to London, becoming a governess. After a successful writing career she remarried had many children and lived in Savoy. Beaumont wrote several books on education. She was one of the first to write fairy tales for children. Mme Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve wrote a story titled Beauty and the Beast. Le Prince de Beaumont revised and abridged this story producing the story that has become one of the most famous children's tales in history. The tale tells the story of Beauty who meets a terrible looking beast. She learns to love the beast. The moral is that inner beauty is the true and most precious form of beauty.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:06:27 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Through her great capacity to love, a kind and beautiful maid releases a handsome prince from the spell which has made him an ugly beast.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 2 descriptions

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