The first vegetables appeared on the tables around 5000 years ago and it was the moment when human populations were no longer nomads but became permanent. The cultivation of vegetables was delegated to women, they were the ones who selected and passed on the edible plants. The Greeks with Hippocrates much later dealt with the nutritional effects of fruit and vegetables that were the basis of their diet, the same was for the Romans.
But what does this talk have to do with fairy tales? Well, they contain all the elements of life and tell the stories of human beings, often through allegories, plants play an important role in fairy tales, in particular those cultivated in the garden and in the orchard. After all, vegetables of abnormal size were a source of wonder and the peasant culture often attributed their magical properties which made them perfectr fairy tales elements.
- In 'Jack and the Beanstalk', a popular English fairy tale, the bean plant becomes a ladder that rises to the sky and is used by Giacomino to reach the orc's dwelling and take possession of many riches that will allow him to save himself and his mother of poverty.
- The juicy red apples will serve the witch to poison the beautiful Snow White.
- A pumpkin is transformed into a magnificent carriage that will take Cinderella to the Prince's ball.
- A small pea under the mattress is used to distinguish a real princess in 'The princess and the Pea' (CLICK to see my version)
My version made of felt, wood clay and paper clay of the cinderella pumpkin-carriage.
I leave to you the interpretation of these fairy tales that always have a meaning that goes beyond the fantastic story. Many other fairy tales contain plant elements such as Rapunzel and even the educational fables of Aesop and later of Phaedrus, such as "The fox and the grape".
Sapete dirmi altre fiabe che contengano elementi vegetali?