Library staff recommendation: Golden Book of Fairy Tales

The Golden Book of Fairy Tales.

Translated by Marie Ponsot; illustrated by Adrienne Ségur.

NY: Golden Books, 1999.

Greenfield Open Stacks 741.641 Se396g

Originally published in the 1950s, this illustrated collection of 28 fairy tales from around the world is a classic. The contents include well-known stories such as “Sleeping Beauty”, “Thumbelina”, and “Cinderella”, and lesser-known tales such as “Finn, the Keen Falcon” and “Green Snake”. What sets it apart, though, are the beautiful and intricate illustrations by Adrienne Ségur (1901-1981). The head- and tail-pieces are just as beautiful as the full-page illustrations.

Illustration for "Green Snake"
Illustration for "Green Snake"
Head-piece for "Puss and Boots"

Not much is known in the United States about Ségur, who was born in Greece to a French father and Greek mother, but a diligent researcher has translated a pamphlet about her. If you’re familiar with Ségur’s works, you’ll see her own resemblance to her illustrations.

portrait of Adrienne Ségur
Adrienne Ségur

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