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Charles Perrault, Tales of My Mother Goose

 

Born in Paris in 1628, Charles Perrault was trained as a lawyer but spent most of his working life as a bureaucrat in the Department of Public Works. The death of his patron in 1683 put an end to that career, and at the age of 55, Perrault tried his hand at literature, composing stories in verse. But he was not a very good poet, and his reputation depends on his success with such prose tales as Sleeping Beauty, Little Red Riding Hood, Blue Beard, Puss-in-Boots, The Fairies, and Cinderella, all of which appeared in about 1697 in Tales and Stories of the Past with Morals, along with the subtitle "Tales of My Mother Goose."

These were first translated into English a third of a century later, in 1729, the year that John Newbery, the eventual publisher of Mother Goose's Melodies in 1760, started his career as a printer, publisher and author in Reading, England.


 


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