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This article focuses on the fairytale, "Sleeping Beauty". For the first Enchanted Forest character known as Sleeping Beauty, see here. For the second, see Aurora.

"Sleeping Beauty", also known as "La Belle au bois dormant", is a fairytale featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time. It was written by French author Charles Perrault and incorporated in the book "Stories or Fairy Tales from Past Times with Morals" in 1697. Another version of this story was written by the German authors, The Brothers Grimm, under the title "Little Briar Rose".


In a faraway kingdom that was both peaceful and prosperous, the reigning King and his Queen long to have a child but several of their attempts fail. Time passes and finally their wish is granted with the birth of a daughter. A great holiday is then organized for all of high or low estate to pay homage, with seven fairies being selected as godmothers to the infant princess.

During the banquet held at the Royal Palace, the fairies are seated before a golden casket filled with bejeweled utensils. Suddenly a Wicked Fairy enters the Great Hall - enraged that she did not receive an invitation - and is given a seating, but not a golden casket since only seven were made. The Good Fairies one by one bestow their gifts: the Gift of Beauty, the Gift of Wit, the Gift of Grace, the Gift of Dance, the Gift of Song and the Gift of Music. Suddenly the Wicked Fairy announces to the assemblage that she too has a gift for the child. She curses the princess to prick her finger on a spindle and die on her sixteenth year. However, one last fairy has yet to give her gift and uses it to partially reverse the wicked fairy's curse, proclaiming that the princess will instead fall into a deep sleep for 100 years and be awoken by a king's son.

The king forbids spinning on spinning-wheels or spindles, or the possession of one, throughout the kingdom, upon pain of death. When the princess is fifteen or sixteen and her parents are away on pleasure bent, she wanders through the palace rooms going up and down and then chances upon an old woman who is spinning with her distaff in the garret of a tower and had not heard of the king's decree against spinning wheels. The princess asks to try the unfamiliar task and the inevitable happens: the curse is fulfilled. The old woman cries for help and attempts are made to revive her, but to no avail. The king attributes this to fate and has the princess carried to the finest room in the palace and placed upon a bed of gold-and-silver-embroidered fabric. The good fairy who altered the evil prophecy is summoned by a dwarf wearing seven-league boots and returns in a chariot of fire drawn by dragons. Having great powers of foresight, the good fairy sees that the princess will be distressed to find herself alone and so puts everyone in the castle to sleep. The king and queen kiss their daughter goodbye and depart, proclaiming the entrance to be forbidden. The good fairy's magic also summons a forest of trees, brambles and thorns that spring up around the castle, shielding it from the outside world and preventing anyone from disturbing the princess.

A hundred years pass and a prince from another family spies the hidden castle during a hunting expedition. His attendants tell him differing stories regarding the happenings in the castle until an old man recounts his father's words: within the castle lies a beautiful princess who is doomed to sleep for a hundred years, whereupon a king's son is to come and awaken her. The prince then braves the tall tress, brambles and thorns which part at his approach, and enters the castle. He passes the sleeping castle folk and comes across the chamber where the princess lies asleep on the bed. Trembling at the radiant beauty before him, he falls on his knees before her. The enchantment comes to an end and the princess awakens and converses with the prince for a long time. Meanwhile, the rest of the castle awakes and go about their business. The prince and princess head over to the hall of mirrors to dine and are later married by the chaplain in the castle chapel.

Show Adaptation

  • Once Upon a Time uses the names Aurora, Phillip and Maleficent, which are the names given to Sleeping Beauty, her prince and the wicked fairy in the Disney version. In the Perrault story, Sleeping Beauty has a daughter named L'Aurore, which is the origin of "Aurora" as the name of Sleeping Beauty herself in the Disney movie.
  • Princess Aurora is the daughter of the first Sleeping Beauty, who also fell under the Sleeping Curse in the past.[1]
  • Prince Phillip traveled with Mulan to find Aurora - the original Sleeping Beauty's daughter, who slept for more than twenty-eight years, not a hundred.
  • Maleficent transformed Prince Philip into a Yaoguai so he won't find Aurora.

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