Sunday, October 25, 2015

The Frog Prince vs. Cupid and Psyche

Cupid and Psyche is not my first choice of comparison to The Frog King by the Brothers Grimm. Cupid and Psyche is obviously from Greek Mythology and while the Brother’s Grimm studied the Greek writing style it is still an odd pairing for comparison and yet both stories feature similarities as well as many differences.
In both The Frog Prince and Cupid and Psyche one of the main protagonists is a princess. The princess is similar in both stories, as she is described to be the most beautiful person in the land and her two sisters are just not as beautiful as her. This gives the princess a certain uniqueness and appeal to suitors. Differences are in the small details such as the golden ball is a detail only found in The Frog King, and in Cupid and Psyche, the inciting incident is instead about Venus’s jealousy and ordering of Cupid. Venus would be the evil character, who is jealous of Psyche and wants to punish her. Because of her jealous she punishes Psyche by cursing her future husband be some sort of monster. While in The Frog Prince the frog is made out the be the monster as the princess calls him nasty.
Some other points of comparison are the parental figures. In The Frog King,  the king makes the princess keep her promise to the frog, because it’s the right thing to do. In Cupid and Psyche, Psyche’s parents make her go to the mountain and await her fate, a very greek mythology kind of request. Within both stories the parents play a real role of parents, by making the princess’s do the right thing.
In the end, Psyche is happily united with Cupid. And in The Frog King, the frog is transformed into a prince and he and the princess get married. An interesting difference is that there is no Faithful Henry character in Cupid and Psyche, and would play no role in the story whatsoever. And while both stories are different they share similar motifs and morals making for a relatively good comparison.

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