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Little Red Riding Hood
Little Red Riding Hood Märchen

Little Red Riding Hood - Fairy Tale by the Brothers Grimm

Reading time for children: 9 min

Once upon a time there was a sweet little girl. Everyone who saw her liked her, but most of all her grandmother, who did not know what to give the child next. Once she gave her a little cap made of red velvet. Because it suited her so well, and she wanted to wear it all the time, she came to be known as Little Red Riding Hood. One day her mother said to her: „Come Little Red Riding Hood. Here is a piece of cake and a bottle of wine. Take them to your grandmother. She is sick and weak, and they will do her well.

Little Red Riding Hood Fairy TaleImage: Otto Kubel (1868 – 1951)

Mind your manners and give her my greetings. Behave yourself on the way, and do not leave the path, or you might fall down and break the glass, and then there will be nothing for your sick grandmother.“

Little Red Riding Hood promised to obey her mother. The grandmother lived out in the woods, a half hour from the village. When Little Red Riding Hood entered the woods a wolf came up to her. She did not know what a wicked animal he was, and was not afraid of him. „Good day to you, Little Red Riding Hood.“ – „Thank you, wolf.“ – „Where are you going so early, Little Red Riding Hood?“ – „To grandmother’s.“

Little Red Riding Hood Fairy TaleImage: Otto Kubel (1868 – 1951)

„And what are you carrying under your apron?“ – „Grandmother is sick and weak, and I am taking her some cake and wine. We baked yesterday, and they should give her strength.“ – „Little Red Riding Hood, just where does your grandmother live?“ – „Her house is a good quarter hour from here in the woods, under the three large oak trees. There’s a hedge of hazel bushes there. You must know the place,“ said Little Red Riding Hood. The wolf thought to himself: „Now there is a tasty bite for me. Just how are you going to catch her?“ Then he said: „Listen, Little Red Riding Hood, haven’t you seen the beautiful flowers that are blossoming in the woods? Why don’t you go and take a look? And I don’t believe you can hear how beautifully the birds are singing. You are walking along as though you were on your way to school in the village. It is very beautiful in the woods.“

Little Red Riding Hood opened her eyes and saw the sunlight breaking through the trees and how the ground was covered with beautiful flowers. She thought: „If a take a bouquet to grandmother, she will be very pleased. Anyway, it is still early, and I’ll be home on time.“ And she ran off into the woods looking for flowers. Each time she picked one she thought that she could see an even more beautiful one a little way off, and she ran after it, going further and further into the woods.

Little Red Riding Hood Fairy TaleImage: Otto Kubel (1868 – 1951)

But the wolf ran straight to the grandmother’s house and knocked on the door. „Who’s there?“ – „Little Red Riding Hood. I’m bringing you some cake and wine. Open the door for me.“ – „Just press the latch,“ called out the grandmother. „I’m too weak to get up.“ The wolf pressed the latch, and the door opened. He stepped inside, went straight to the grandmother’s bed, and ate her up. Then he took her clothes, put them on, and put her cap on his head.

Little Red Riding Hood Fairy TaleImage: Otto Kubel (1868 – 1951)

He got into her bed and pulled the curtains shut.

Little Red Riding Hood had run after flowers, and did not continue on her way to grandmother’s until she had gathered all that she could carry. When she arrived, she found, to her surprise, that the door was open. She walked into the parlor, and everything looked so strange that she thought: „Oh, my God, why am I so afraid? I usually like it at grandmother’s.“ Then she went to the bed and pulled back the curtains. Grandmother was lying there with her cap pulled down over her face and looking very strange. „Oh, grandmother, what big ears you have!“ – „All the better to hear you with.“ – „Oh, grandmother, what big eyes you have!“ – „All the better to see you with.“ – „Oh, grandmother, what big hands you have!“ – „All the better to grab you with!“ – „Oh, grandmother, what a horribly big mouth you have!“ – „All the better to eat you with!“ And with that he jumped out of bed, jumped on top of poor Little Red Riding Hood, and ate her up.

Little Red Riding Hood Fairy TaleImage: Otto Kubel (1868 – 1951)

As soon as the wolf had finished this tasty bite, he climbed back into bed, fell asleep, and began to snore very loudly. A huntsman was just passing by. He thought it strange that the old woman was snoring so loudly, so he decided to take a look. He stepped inside, and in the bed there lay the wolf that he had been hunting for such a long time. „He has eaten the grandmother, but perhaps she still can be saved. I won’t shoot him,“ thought the huntsman. So he took a pair of scissors and cut open his belly. He had cut only a few strokes when he saw the red cap shining through. He cut a little more, and the girl jumped out and cried: „Oh, I was so frightened! It was so dark inside the wolf’s body!“ And then the grandmother came out alive as well. Then Little Red Riding Hood fetched some large heavy stones. They filled the wolf’s body with them, and when he woke up and tried to run away, the stones were so heavy that he fell down dead.

The three of them were happy. The huntsman took the wolf’s pelt. The grandmother ate the cake and drank the wine that Little Red Riding Hood had brought. And Little Red Riding Hood thought to herself: „As long as I live, I will never leave the path and run off into the woods by myself if mother tells me not to.“

Little Red Riding Hood Fairy TaleImage: Otto Kubel (1868 – 1951)

They also tell how Little Red Riding Hood was taking some baked things to her grandmother another time, when another wolf spoke to her and wanted her to leave the path. But Little Red Riding Hood took care and went straight to grandmother’s. She told her that she had seen the wolf, and that he had wished her a good day, but had stared at her in a wicked manner. „If we hadn’t been on a public road, he would have eaten me up,“ she said. „Come,“ said the grandmother. „Let’s lock the door, so he can’t get in.“

Little Red Riding Hood Fairy TaleImage: Paul Hey (1867 – 1952)

Soon afterward the wolf knocked on the door and called out: „Open up, grandmother. It’s Little Red Riding Hood, and I’m bringing you some baked things.“ They remained silent, and did not open the door. The wicked one walked around the house several times, and finally jumped onto the roof. He wanted to wait until Little Red Riding Hood went home that evening, then follow her and eat her up in the darkness. But the grandmother saw what he was up to.

There was a large stone trough in front of the house. „Fetch a bucket, Little Red Riding Hood,“ she said. „Yesterday I cooked some sausage. Carry the water that I boiled them with to the trough.“ Little Red Riding Hood carried water until the large, large trough was clear full. The smell of sausage arose into the wolf’s nose. He sniffed and looked down, stretching his neck so long that he could no longer hold himself, and he began to slide. He slid off the roof, fell into the trough, and drowned. And Little Red Riding Hood returned home happily and safely.

Read another short fairy tale (5 min)

Informations for scientific analysis


Fairy tale statistics
Value
NumberKHM 26
Aarne-Thompson-Uther-IndexATU Typ 333
Translations deutsch
Readability Index by Björnsson22.8
Flesch-Reading-Ease Index88
Flesch–Kincaid Grade-Level4.1
Gunning Fog Index6.7
Coleman–Liau Index8.1
SMOG Index7.4
Automated Readability Index4
Character Count6.771
Letter Count5.146
Sentence Count101
Word Count1.267
Average Words per Sentence12,54
Words with more than 6 letters130
Percentage of long words10.3%
Number of Syllables1.589
Average Syllables per Word1,25
Words with three Syllables52
Percentage Words with three Syllables4.1%
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