NYC - Central Park: Hans-Christian Anderson statue

Overlooking the Conservatory Water with its sailboats and wide-eyed kids is the bronze statue of Hans Christian Andersen, a Danish writer of 168 fairy tales. Anderson is sculpted sitting on a bench with an open book whose pages are turned to the best-known story, “The Ugly Duckling.” Not far from his leg a curious duck looks up to Andersen in anticipation of the story’s happy ending. It is easy for children to climb onto Anderson's lap, which many of them do. The statue, sculpted by Chicago-born Georg Lober and given to the park by the Danish-American Women's Association, was installed in 1956. On summer weekends, storytellers stand before the statue and hold their mixed-generation audiences spellbound with lively renditions of Anderson's stories and folktales.


Central Park was designated a scenic landmark by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission in 1974.


National Historic Register #66000538

  • Kurt Modler 7y


    Hans Christian Andersen was born in Odense, Denmark, on Tuesday, April 2, 1805. Most English (as well as German and French) sources use the name "Hans Christian Andersen", but in Denmark and the rest of Scandinavia he is usually referred to as merely "H. C. Andersen." His name "Hans Christian" is a traditional Danish name and is used as a single name, though originally a combination of two individual names. It is incorrect to use only one of the two parts. It is an accepted custom in Denmark to use only the initials in this and a few other names. Andersen's father apparently believed that he might be related to nobility, and according to scholars at the Hans Christian Andersen Center, his paternal grandmother told him that the family had once been in a higher social class. However, investigation proves these stories unfounded. The family apparently did have some connections to Danish royalty, but these were work-related. Nevertheless, the theory that Andersen was the illegitimate son of royalty persists in Denmark, bolstered by the fact that the Danish King took a personal interest in Andersen as a youth and paid for his education. The writer Rolf Dorset insists that not all options have been explored in determining Andersen's heritage.[2]
    Andersen displayed great intelligence and imagination as a young boy, a trait fostered by the indulgence of his parents and by the superstition of his mother. He made himself a small toy-theatre and sat at home making clothes for his puppets, and reading all the plays that he could lay his hands upon; among them were those of Ludvig Holberg and William Shakespeare. Throughout his childhood, he had a passionate love for literature. He was known to memorize entire plays by Shakespeare and to recite them using his wooden dolls as actors. He was also a great lover of the art of banter, and assisted in initiating a society of like minded banterers amongst his friends.
    In 1816, his father died and, in order to support himself, Andersen worked as an apprentice for both a weaver and a tailor. He later worked in a cigarette factory where his fellow workers humiliated him by betting on whether he was in fact a girl, pulling down his trousers to check. At the age of fourteen, Andersen moved to Copenhagen seeking employment as an actor in the theatre. He had a pleasant soprano voice and succeeded in being admitted to the Royal Danish Theatre. This career stopped short when his voice broke. A colleague at the theatre had referred to him as a poet, and Andersen took this very seriously and began to focus on writing.

    Hans Christian Andersen in 1869
    Following an accidental meeting, Jonas Collin started taking an interest in the odd boy and sent Andersen to the grammar school in Slagelse, paying all his expenses.[3] Before even being admitted to grammar-school, Andersen had already succeeded in publishing his first story, The Ghost at Palnatoke's Grave in (1822). Though an unwilling pupil, Andersen studied both in Slagelse and at a school in Elsinore until 1827.[4] He later stated that these years had been the darkest and most bitter parts of his life. He had experienced living in his schoolmaster's own home, being abused in order to "build his character", and he had been alienated from his fellow students, being much older than most of them, homely and unattractive. Furthermore, he was dyslexic, a very likely reason for his learning difficulties and he later said that the school faculty forbid or discouraged him to write. He would later learn to speak near fluent English, Dutch, and German, as well as the Scandinavian languages.

    [edit]Early works
    In 1829, Andersen enjoyed a considerable success with a short story entitled "A Journey on Foot from Holmen's Canal to the East Point of Amager". During the same season, he published both a farce and a collection of poems. He had little further progress, however, until 1833 when he received a small traveling grant from the King, making the first of his long European journeys. At Le Locle, in the Jura, he wrote "Agnete and the Merman"; and in October 1834 he arrived in Rome. Andersen's first novel, The Improvisatore, was published in the beginning of 1835, and became an instant success.
    [edit]Andersen's Fairy Tales
    It was during 1835 that Andersen published the first instalment of his immortal Fairy Tales (Danish: Eventyr). More stories, completing the first volume, were published in 1836 and 1837. The quality of these stories was not immediately recognised, and they sold poorly. At the same time, Andersen enjoyed more success with two novels: O.T. (1836) and Only a Fiddler (1837).
    After a visit to Sweden in 1837, Andersen became inspired by Scandinavism and committed himself to writing a poem to convey his feeling of relatedness between the Swedes, the Danes and the Norwegians.[5] It was in July 1839 during a visit to the island of Funen that Andersen first wrote the text of his poem Jeg er en Skandinav (I am a Scandinavian).[5] Andersen designed the poem random to capture "the beauty of the Nordic spirit, the way the three sister nations have gradually grown together" as part of a Scandinavian national anthem.[5] Composer Otto Lindblad set the poem to music and the composition was published in January 1840. Its popularity peaked in 1845, after which it was seldom sung.[5]
    In 1851, he published to wide acclaim In Sweden, a volume of travel sketches. A keen traveller, Andersen published several other long travelogues: Shadow Pictures of a Journey to the Harz, Swiss Saxony, etc. etc. in the Summer of 1831 (A Poet's Bazaar (560), In Spain , and [[A Visit to Portugal in (The latter describes his visit with his Portuguese friends Jorge and Jose O'Neill, who were his fellows in the mid 1820s while living in Copenhagen. In his travelogues, Andersen took heed of some of the contemporary conventions about travel writing; but always developed the genre to suit his own purposes. Each of his travelogues combines documentary and descriptive accounts of the sights he saw with more philosophical excurses on topics such as being an author, immortality, and the nature of fiction in the literary travel report. Some of the travelogues, such as In Sweden, even contain fairy-tales.
    In the 1840s Andersen's attention returned to the stage, however with no great success. His true genius was however proved in the miscellany the Picture-Book without Pictures (1840). The fame of his Fairy Tales had grown steadily; a second series began in 1838 and a third in 1845. Andersen was now celebrated throughout Europe, although his native Denmark still showed some resistance to his pretensions.
    [edit]Meetings with Dickens
    In June 1847, Andersen paid his first visit to England and enjoyed a triumphal social success during the summer. The Countess of Blessington invited him to her parties where intellectual and famous people could meet, and it was at one party that he met Charles Dickens for the first time. They shook hands and walked to the veranda which was of much joy to Andersen. He wrote in his diary "We had come to the veranda, I was so happy to see and speak to England's now living writer, whom I love the most."[6]
    Ten years later, Andersen visited England, primarily to visit Dickens. He stayed at Dickens' home for five weeks, oblivious to Dickens' increasingly blatant hints for him to leave. Dickens' daughter said of Andersen, "He was a bony bore, and stayed on and on."[6] Shortly after Andersen left, Dickens published David Copperfield, featuring the obsequious Uriah Heep, who is said to have been modeled on Andersen. Andersen quite enjoyed the visit, and never understood why Dickens stopped answering his letters.

    In the spring of 1872, Andersen fell out of bed and was severely hurt. He never quite recovered, but he lived until August 4, 1875, dying painfully in a house called pie (literally: calmness), near Copenhagen, the home of his close friends Moritz Melchior and wife, a banker.[7] Shortly before his death, he had consulted a composer about the music for his funeral, saying: "Most of the people who will walk after me will be children, so make the beat keep time with little steps."[7] His body was interred in the Assistens Kirkegård in the Nørrebro area of Copenhagen. At the time of his death, he was an internationally renowned and treasured artist. He received a stipend from the Danish Government as a "national treasure". Before his death, steps were already underway to erect the large statue in his honour, which was completed and is prominently placed in Copenhagen. [1]
    The critic Georg Brandes had questioned Andersen about whether he would write his autobiography. He claimed that it had already been written- "The Ugly Duckling". [1]
    [edit]Sexual orientation

    Andersen's sexual orientation is a matter of controversy in academic circles.[8] The discussion began in 1901 with the article "Hans Christian Andersen: Evidence of his Homosexuality" by Carl Albert Hansen Fahlberg (using the pseudonym Albert Hansenin) in Magnus Hirschfeld's publication Jahrbuch für sexuelle Zwischenstufe (Yearbook on Sexual Ambiguity). Biographies usually portray him as either homosexual or bisexual.
    Many of his stories are interpreted as references to his sexual grief. One of these stories is The Nightingale which is a tribute to the "Swedish Nightingale" Jenny Lind, a famous Swedish opera singer, with whom Andersen was in love. Her feelings towards him were not mutual; she saw him as a brother at most.[9][10] One other story is "The Little Mermaid", who sacrifices her own life for that of her unattainable prince. Some biographers think this story exemplifies Andersen's love for the young Edvard Collin,[11] to whom he wrote: "I languish for you as for a pretty Calabrian wench... my sentiments for you are those of a woman. The femininity of my nature and our friendship must remain a mystery." Collin, who did not prefer men, wrote in his own memoir: "I found myself unable to respond to this love, and this caused the author much suffering." Likewise, the infatuations of the author for the Danish dancer Harald Scharff[12] and Carl Alexander, the young hereditary duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach,[13] did not result in notable partnerships. Four of his letters to Carl are edited in the anthology by Rictor Norton. In Andersen's early life, his private journal records his refusal to have sexual relations and his release through masturbation. [14][15]

    In the English-speaking world, stories such as "Thumbelina", "The Snow Queen", "The Ugly Duckling", "The Little Mermaid", "The Emperor's New Clothes", and "The Princess and the Pea" remain popular and are widely read. "The Emperor's new clothes" and "ugly duckling" have both passed into the English language as well-known expressions.

    Statue of Andersen in Copenhagen
    In the Copenhagen harbor there is a statue of The Little Mermaid, placed in honor of Hans Christian Andersen. 2 April, Andersen's birthday, is celebrated as International Children's Book Day.
    About a third of Andersen's stories have been translated into Interlingua. His home in Odense, Denmark, features a computer displaying samples of his work in each language in which it appears. The sample in Interlingua is the story "The days of the week".[16]
    The year 2005 was the bicentenary of Andersen's birth and his life and work was celebrated around the world. In Denmark, particularly, the nation's most famous son has been feted like no other literary figure.[citation needed][dubious – discuss]
    A $12.5m theme park based on Andersen's tales and life opened in Shanghai at the end of 2006. Multi-media games as well as all kinds of cultural contests related to the fairytales are available to visitors. He was chosen as the star of the park because he is a "nice, hardworking person who was not afraid of poverty", Shanghai Gujin Investment general manager Zhai Shiqiang was quoted by the AFP news agency as saying. (BBC Asia-Pacific 8/11/06)[citation needed][dubious – discuss]
    [edit]Fairy tales

    Some of his most famous fairy tales include:
    The Angel (1843) [1]
    The Bell (1845) [2]
    The Emperor's New Clothes (1837) [3]
    The Fir Tree (1844) [4]
    The Happy Family (1847) [5]
    It's Quite True! (1852) [6]
    The Little Match Girl (1848) [7]
    The Little Mermaid (1836) [8]
    Little Tuck (1847) [9]
    The Nightingale (1844) [10]
    The Old House (1847) [11]
    Ole-Lukøie (1841)[12]
    The Princess and the Pea (1835; also known as The Real Princess) [13]
    The Red Shoes (1845) [14]
    The Shadow (1847) [15]
    The Snow Queen (1845) [16]
    The Steadfast Tin Soldier (1838) [17]
    The Story of a Mother (1847) [18]
    The Swineherd (1841) [19]
    Thumbelina (1835) [20]
    The Tinder Box (1835) [21]
    The Ugly Duckling (1844) [22]
    The Wild Swans (1838) [23]
    [edit]Contemporary literary works inspired by Andersen's stories

    The Girl Who Trod on a Loaf by Kathryn Davis: a contemporary novel about fairy tales and opera
    The Snow Queen by Joan Vinge: an award-winning novel that reworks the Snow Queen's themes into epic science fiction
    The Nightingale by Kara Dalkey: a lyrical adult fantasy novel set in the courts of old Japan
    The Wild Swans by Peg Kerr: a novel that brings Andersen's fairy tale to colonial and modern America
    Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier: a romantic fantasy novel, set in early Ireland, thematically linked to "The Wild Swans"
    The Snow Queen by Eileen Kernaghan: a gentle Young Adult fantasy novel that brings out the tale's subtle pagan and shamanic elements
    "The Snow Queen", a short story by Patricia A. McKillip (published in Snow White, Blood Red)
    "You, Little Match Girl", a short story by Joyce Carol Oates (published in Black Heart, Ivory Bones)
    "Sparks", a short story by Gregory Frost (based on The Tinder Box, published in Black Swan, White Raven)
    "Steadfast", a short story by Nancy Kress (based on The Steadfast Tin Soldier, published in Black Swan, White Raven)
    "The Sea Hag", a short story by Melissa Lee Shaw (based on The Little Mermaid, published in Silver Birch, Blood Moon)
    "The Real Princess", a short story by Susan Palwick (based on The Princess and the Pea, published in Ruby Slippers, Golden Tears)
    "Match Girl", a short story by Anne Bishop (published in Ruby Slippers, Golden Tears)
    "The Pangs of Love", a short story by Jane Gardam (based on The Little Mermaid, published in Close Company: Stories of Mothers and Daughters)
    "The Chrysanthemum Robe", a short story by Kara Dalkey (based on The Emperor's New Clothes, published in The Armless Maiden)
    "The Steadfast Tin Soldier", a short story by Joan Vinge (published in Women of Wonder)
    "In the Witch's Garden", a short story by Naomi Kritzer (based on The Snow Queen, published in Realms of Fantasy magazine, October 2002 issue)
    "The Last Poems About the Snow Queen", a poem cycle by Sandra Gilbert (published in Blood Pressure)
    The Little Mermaid (2005) for children's chorus, narrator, orchestra by Richard Mills
    "La petite marchande d'allumettes", film by Jean Renoir (1928)[17]

    Jackie Wullschläger, Hans Christian Andersen. The Life of a Storyteller, Penguin, 2000, ISBN 0-14-028320-X
    Stig Dalager, Journey in Blue, historical, biographical novel about H.C.Andersen, Peter Owen, London 2006, McArthur & Co., Toronto 2006.
    Norton, Rictor (ed.) My Dear Boy:Gay Love Letters through the Centuries. Leyland Publications, San Francisco. 1998 ISBN 0-943595-71-1
    Ruth Manning-Sanders, Swan of Denmark: The Story of Hans Christian Andersen, Heinemann, 1949

    ^ a b c Elias Bredsdorff, Hans Christian Andersen: the story of his life and work 1805-75, Phaidon (1975) ISBN 0-7148-1636-1
    ^ Neil Philip (8 January 2005). The little prince. Times Online. Retrieved on 2007-09-27. “the illegitimate son of a future king?”
    ^ H.C. Andersens skolegang og livet i Slagelse
    ^ H.C. Andersens skolegang i Helsingør Latinskole
    ^ a b c d Hans Christian Andersen and Music. - I am a Scandinavian. (Accessed January 12, 2007).
    ^ a b H.C. Andersen og Charles Dickens 1857
    ^ a b Bryant, Mark: Private Lives, 2001, p.12
    ^ Dag Heede writes that "the ‘War About Hans Christian Andersen’s Sexuality’ ... has lasted over a century and ... is far from over." Heede, Dag. Hans Christian Andersen's (Homo) Sexuality. Danish Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved on 2006-07-19.
    ^ H.C. Andersen homepage (danish)
    ^ English source
    ^ Hans Christian Andersen's correspondence, ed Frederick Crawford6, London. 1891
    ^ Andersen wrote about Scharff in his diary, on 6 March 1862: "I long for him daily." From de Mylius, Johan. The Life of Hans Christian Andersen. Day By Day.. Hans Christian Andersen Center. Retrieved on 2006-07-22.
    ^ Andersen wrote in his diary: "The Hereditary Grand Duke walked arm in arm with me across the courtyard of the castle to my room, kissed me lovingly, asked me always to love him though he was just an ordinary person, asked me to stay with him this winter. [...] fell asleep with the mela6ncholy, happy feeling that I was the guest of this strange prince at his castle and loved by him. [...] It is like a fairy tale." From Pritchard, Claudia. "His dark materials", The Independent, 2005-03-27. Retrieved on 2006-07-23.
    ^ Lepage, Robert. "Bedtime stories", The Guardian, 2006-01-18. Retrieved on 2006-07-19.
    ^ Recorded using "special Greek symbols".Garfield, Patricia (2004-06-21). The Dreams of Hans Christian Andersen (PDF) 29. Retrieved on 2006-07-20.
    ^ H.C. Andersen in Interlingua, March 17, 2006.
    ^ La petite marchande d'allumettes (1928) at the Internet Movie Database
    Jens Andersen; Andersen, En Biografi; Gyldendal, Copenhagen, 2 volumes, 2003
    [edit]External links

    Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:
    Hans Christian Andersen

    Wikisource has original works written by or about:
    Hans Christian Andersen

    Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
    Hans Christian Andersen
    The Hans Christian Andersen Center - contains many Andersen's stories in Danish and English
    The Hans Christian Andersen Museum in Odense has a large digital collection of Hans Christian Andersen papercuts, drawings and portraits - Also you can follow his travels across Europe and explore his Nyhavn study.
    Hans Cristian Andersen at the Internet Movie Database
    Hans Christian Andersen Bicentenary Website from Danish Broadcasting Corp. (DR)- Features audio fairytales and interactive, multimedia features in Danish and English
    Andersen's Fairy Tales public domain audio book at LibriVox
    Hans Christian Andersen: Fairy Tales and Stories
    The Orders and Medals Society of Denmark has descriptions of Hans Christian Andersen's Medals and Decorations.
    And the cobbler's son became a princely author Details of Andersen's life and the celebrations.
    Hans Christian Andersen Fairy Tales in English, Russian and Ukrainian
    Hans Christian Andersen: Fairytales and Stories Text of most of Andersen's fairy tales, with an extensive introduction and art based on Andersen's papercuts.
    Works by Hans Christian Andersen at Project Gutenberg
    Works by Hans Christian Andersen at Internet Archive. Scanned, color illustrated first editions.
    Hans Christian Andersen Information (mainly in Danish) contains information about his life, childhood home, Hans Christian Andersen House and museum, fairy tales and stories, literary activities, drawings, papercuts and picture pages.
    Hans Christian Andersen online portrait gallery by global contemporary artists
    Funabashi H. C. Andersen Park (in Japanese) Main Article : H. C. Andersen Park (アンデルセン公園)
    Hans Christian Andersen paintings by artist Erik Bagge Hans Christian Andersen's fairy tales seen with the eyes and pencil of the Danish artist Erik Bagge.
    WorldCat Identities page for 'Andersen, H. C. 1805-1875 (Hans Christian)'
    The Annotated Hans Christian Andersen (W. W. Norton, 2007)
  • gitaliy 3y

    Why on statue H.C.Anderson by G.Lober the jacket has clasp on the left side like women clothes?
    Thank you
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