Jack the Giant Killer (Illustrated)

The Planet
4
Free sample

Jack the Giant Killer is the famous English fairy tale about a brave lad slaying hideous giants. 

Color illustrations by Hugh Thomson.

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3.5
4 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
The Planet
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Published on
Feb 13, 2013
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Pages
36
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ISBN
9781909115484
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Language
English
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Content Protection
This content is DRM free.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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Last year, in giving the young ones a volume of English Fairy Tales, my difficulty was one of collection. This time, in offering them specimens of the rich folk-fancy of the Celts of these islands, my trouble has rather been one of selection. Ireland began to collect her folk-tales almost as early as any country in Europe, and Croker has found a whole school of successors in Carleton, Griffin, Kennedy, Curtin, and Douglas Hyde. Scotland had the great name of Campbell, and has still efficient followers in MacDougall, MacInnes, Carmichael, Macleod, and Campbell of Tiree. Gallant little Wales has no name to rank alongside these; in this department the Cymru have shown less vigour than the Gaedhel. Perhaps the Eisteddfod, by offering prizes for the collection of Welsh folk-tales, may remove this inferiority. Meanwhile Wales must be content to be somewhat scantily represented among the Fairy Tales of the Celts, while the extinct Cornish tongue has only contributed one tale.
In making my selection I have chiefly tried to make the stories characteristic. It would have been easy, especially from Kennedy, to have made up a volume entirely filled with "Grimm's Goblins" à la Celtique. But one can have too much even of that very good thing, and I have therefore avoided as far as possible the more familiar "formulae" of folk-tale literature. To do this I had to withdraw from the English-speaking Pale both in Scotland and Ireland, and I laid down the rule to include only tales that have been taken down from Celtic peasants ignorant of English.
Having laid down the rule, I immediately proceeded to break it. The success of a fairy book, I am convinced, depends on the due admixture of the comic and the romantic: Grimm and Asbjörnsen knew this secret, and they alone. But the Celtic peasant who speaks Gaelic takes the pleasure of telling tales somewhat sadly: so far as he has been printed and translated, I found him, to my surprise, conspicuously lacking in humour. For the comic relief of this volume I have therefore had to turn mainly to the Irish peasant of the Pale; and what richer source could I draw from?
Celtic folklore overflows with vivid stories that fire the imagination. At the end of his highly successful English Fairy Tales, Joseph Jacobs compiled Celtic Fairy Tales, a book of 26 stories from around Wales and Ireland. While some of the themes found in Celtic folklore are similar to those of contemporary fairy tales, other stories in this collection are infused with a flavour that is uniquely Celtic. In Jacobs' own words, "The Celts went forth to battle, but they always fell. Yet the captive Celt has enslaved his captor in the realm of imagination." Celtic Fairy Tales tells of horned women, breweries of eggshells, sprightly tailors, gold and silver trees, King o' Toole's goose, sea maidens, and more. Of particular interest is the 13th century legend of Beth Gellert, wherein the dog of Llewelyn (I) the Great, Prince of Wales, protected the prince's infant son from a wolf attack. A memorial to the dog still stands today in the village of Beddgelert, near Snowdon, Wales. In an attempt to give a library of the Celts' wealthy imagination to his readers, Jacobs has attempted to begin the readers' captivity with the earliest recordings of these tales. And captivate he does-Celtic Fairy Tales not only preserves a cultural history, but also is richly entertaining. We invite you to curl up with this unique sliver of Celtic folklore not seen in print for over a century; immerse yourself in the tales and fables of yesteryear. A percentage of the profit from the sale of this book will be donated to the Prince's Trust for education scholarships for underprivileged individuals.
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