Sometimes a coincidence so weird happens, you just gotta share it.
As you know, I’m adapting an old collection of obscure Italian fairy tales called the Pentamerone into several plays. Well, as part of that process, I wanted to find out the name of some other fairy tale collections from that area that might have been around during the same time period.
I search for “Italian fairy tales,” find a list of stories, and figure I’ll just click on the ones I’m not familiar with and see when and where they’re from. So I literally just click on the first entry, which is Ancilotto, King of Provino by Giovanni Francesco Straparola and, wouldn’t you know it, it turns out to be the fairy tale The Green Bird is based on. I couldn’t believe the coincidence!
Fairy tale nerd that I am, it probably should have occurred to me to look up exactly what fairy tale Gozzi’s play was originally based off of but I was so busy dealing with the many versions of the text I had in front of me that I didn’t want to go down a whole new rabbit hole of research. But now that I have dutifully gone down that rabbit hole, I can report with some authority that Carlo Gozzi’s The Green Bird is Aarne-Thompson fairy tale type 707: the dancing water, the singing apple, and the speaking bird.
I mean, duh, right? 🙂