The Little Match Girl

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"The Little Match Girl"
Illustration by Bayes
AuthorHans Christian Andersen
CharactersThe Little Match Girl
Genre(s)Literary fairy tale
Published inDansk Folkekalender for 1846
Media typePrint
Publication dateDecember 1845

"The Little Match Girl" is a story by Hans Christian Andersen. It was first published in December 1845. Andersen got the idea to write the story after seeing a print by Johan Thomas Lundbye of a little girl selling matches. The story has been adapted to various media including an animated movie.

Story[change | change source]

A little match girl in poverty lights all the matches she carries to keep herself warm on a cold New Year's Eve. Afraid of beating by her father when she could not sell any match, she could not return home. In the glow of the firelight, she sees wonderful visions of a Christmas tree and a festive dinner. In the sky, she sees a shooting star, which her late grandmother had told means someone is on their way to Heaven. The last vision is her dead grandmother, the only person to ever show her any love. The little match girl dies in the cold, and ascends into Heaven with her grandmother.

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Other websites[change | change source]