What Is Wilde's Fable "The Happy Prince" About?


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Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
It shows the superficial view of man. Beauty is judged by precious materials like gold, rubies and rare sapphires. The sculpture does not make the Happy Prince's heart, which is unseen from outside, of gold; on the contrary, it is made of lead, lower value material, but it is considered one of the precious things besides the body of the sparrow by our Lord. It is the contrast between inner and outer beauty.
Will Martin Profile
Will Martin answered
The Happy Prince, the former ruler of a city, is now a golden statue. From his position above the city he can see all the poverty and misery which, in his life, he was never told about. Now he desperately wants to help his former subjects, but is powerless. 

A swallow, which has delayed flying away to Egypt for the winter, agrees to help him. It takes the statue's jewelled eyes and gives them away; then it takes pieces of gold leaf and flies to the homes of the poor, sometimes saving lives. 
This goes on until the statue is quite blind, bare and ugly; now the prince urges the swallow to fly south, but it is too late. The bird dies of the cold, and the heart of the statue cracks.

Next day, the town authorities notice how ugly the statue looks. It is melted down, and its cracked heart is thrown on a dust heap with the body of the swallow. 
The fable ends by saying that, to God, these are the two most precious things in the city.

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