Book Cover
Title Red Riding Hood
Author Charles Perrault
Illustrated By ---
Publisher Derrydale - 1980
First Printing Derrydale - 1980
Book Cover
Title Little Red Riding Hood
Author Jean-Pierre Enard
Illustrated By Gerda Muller
Publisher Marshall Cavendish - 1980
First Printing Librarie Hachette - 1979
Book Cover
Title Grimm's Fairy Tales
Author J.L.C & W.C. Grimm
Illustrated By Arthur Rackman
Publisher International Collector's Library - 2004
First Printing ---
Book Cover
Title Grimm's Fairy Tales
Author J.L.C & W.C. Grimm
Illustrated By Leonard Weisgard
Publisher Nelson Doubleday - 1954
First Printing ---
Category Children
Warnings None
Main Characters Little Red Riding Hood, the Wolf
Main Elements Anthropomorphism


There are several versions of this classic fairy tale out there. One was written by Charles Perrault and is known as Little Red Riding Hood, the other was written by the Brother's Grimm and is know as Little Red Cap (in one case she gets a hood, in another she just gets a cap). The two tales are very similar, but there are some differences.

Charles Perrault's version follows the little girl as she takes some food to see her grandmother. Along the way she meets a wolf and tells him where she is going. The wolf gets to her grandmother's place first and eats her. Then Little Red Riding Hood arrives and the classic sequence of "My what big hands you have..." begins. At the end of which the wolf eats her. And yes, that is where the story ends.

The Brother's Grimm added to the tale. The first part is pretty much the same, but after she is eaten, the wolf goes to sleep. His loud snoring alerts a passing woodcutter (or hunter, or whatever) and he comes in. He cuts open the wolf's stomach and lets the two vicitms out. They then fill his stomach with stones. When the wolf tries to flee, he falls down dead. This was the version I was most familiar with, and had always been mildly disturbed by the cutting of the stomach and the placement of stones. Kind of nightmarish!

But there is even more to the tale! In some versions, Little Red Riding Hood (or should I say Cap, since we are talking about the Grimm Brothers here) meets another wolf in the woods. She is smart enough not to talk to him this time and runs straight to her grandmother's house. The wolf asks to be let in but they don't open the door. So the wolf sits on the roof waiting for the girl to go home. The grandmother tells the girl to throw into the trough outside the window some water she had used to cook sausages. The wolf smelling this leans out over the edge and falls in and drowns. No wolf bothers the little girl again!

The second book I listed above has the full story, even though for some reason I really don't remember the very last part. I recall this book from my childhood because of the bright green and yellow dots on the inside of the cover! It also contains a second tale, The Bremen Town Musicians. The illustrations are nice, but not quite as nice as in the first book I listed above. But this is not nearly so faithful to the original story. The hunter that saves Little Red Riding Hood is her father (not part of any other version I found), and she never gets eaten, her father shoots the wolf dead before that. Grandmother wasn't even home, she was out picking flowers. It is also worded for a younger reader. And for some reason the wolf runs around with clothes on!

The next two books are compilations of Grimm's fairy tales, including Little Red Cap.

You can also find several versions of this tale on Project Gutenberg, just search for Charles Perrault or the Grimm brothers.

Posted: January 2011


Background, images and content (unless otherwise noted) are SunBlind
Do not use without permission.