This article focuses on the fairytale, "Snow White". For the Enchanted Forest character, see Snow White.
Snow White
Background Information
Written By

The Brothers Grimm



Adaptation Information
Featured Episode

See below


"Snow White", also known as "Schneewittchen", is a fairytale featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time. It was written by the German authors Jacob and Wilhelm of the Brothers Grimm and incorporated into the book Grimms' Fairy Tales in 1812.

Traditional PlotEdit

In deep winter, a beautiful Queen is admiring the falling snow as she sits by the window sewing. By accident, she pricks her finger on the needle and watches as three drops of blood fall onto the snow covered on the ebony windowsill. Seeing how the red seemed so vibrant against the white, the Queen wishes for a child - one with lips red as blood, hair black as ebony and skin white as snow.

Soon afterwards, a daughter is born to the Queen and King and is given the name Snow White. When the Queen passes away shortly afterwards, the distraught King remarries; taking a second wife. Though the new Queen possesses great beauty, she is also vain and wicked; convinced that one day her beauty would be compromised.

Each day, the Queen approaches her Magic Mirror - one of her most prized possessions with an answer for every question - and asked it the same question, "Mirror, mirror on the wall...who is the fairest one of all?" And every day, the Mirror responded in her favor; saying that she is the fairest.

Time passes and Snow White reaches the age of seven; becoming even more beautiful than she was as a child. One day, the Queen asks her Magic Mirror who is the fairest one of all and the Mirror replies, "Queen, you are very fair, 'tis true, but Snow White is fairer than you."

Filled with a jealous rage, the Queen brings a Huntsman to the Royal Palace. She orders him to take Snow White into the woods and kill her; bringing back her lungs and liver as proof. The Huntsman obeys, but is unable to kill the young princess. He allows her to escape and kills a boar, bringing its lungs and liver back to the Queen, who has the cook prepare them before consuming them.

Meanwhile, in the woods, Snow White discovers a small cottage, which is home to seven men. She rests, and awakens in the night to find the seven dwarves have returned from working all day in the mines to their cottage. Snow White explains her situation to them and the dwarves agree to let her stay with them on two conditions - she becomes their housekeeper and does not answer the door while they're away at the mines.

Several days later, the Queen asks the Magic Mirror if she is still the fairest in all the land - only to discover Snow White is still alive. Taking matters into her own hands, she disguises herself as an old peddler and travels to the dwarves' cottage with several stay-laces. The Queen laces them so tight that Snow White faints. Though the Queen departs triumphantly, later, she learns her stepdaughter is still alive - the dwarves returned and cut Snow White free of the laces.

Determined to make her second attempt a success, the Queen disguises herself as an elderly woman and travels back to the dwarves' cottage with a comb coated in poison. A naive Snow White opens the door and allows the disguised Queen to brush her hair, and faints as the Queen returns to the Royal Palace. That night, the dwarves return from the mines and come upon Snow White's unconscious state. She awakens; explaining what happened before, and promising to heed their warning to not open the door to strangers.

Once more, the Queen finds out her plan failed. Filled with rage, she creates a poisoned apple and travels back to the dwarves' cottage disguised as a farmer's wife. Recalling the advice of her seven benefactors, Snow White is hesitant to open the door. To gain her trust, the Queen cuts the apple in two and eats the white half.

Convinced the woman means her no harm, Snow White accepts the poisoned red half and eagerly takes a bite; falling into a state of suspended animation. Victorious at last, the Queen departs confident she is now the fairest of them all. Night falls, and the dwarves return home, but are unable to revive the princess. Believing she is dead, the seven men cannot bring themselves to bury her and build a coffin of glass; keeping eternal vigil at her side.

Years later, a Prince from a neighboring kingdom is travelling through the land with a hunting party when he comes across Snow White in her glass coffin. Enchanted by her beauty, the Prince becomes infatuated with the princess and asks the dwarves for permission in taking the coffin back to his castle. The dwarves agree and the Prince orders his men to lift up the coffin. Suddenly, the servants stumble on a tree stump, which causes poisoned red half of the apple to dislodge from Snow White's throat; bringing her back to life. The Prince declares his love for her, and together they return to the Palace where Snow White is to be married to him.

Reassured by the poisoned apple's effects on her stepdaughter, the Queen asks the Magic Mirror if she is the fairest of them all. The Mirror replies, "You, my Queen, are fair; it is true. But the young Queen is a thousand times fairer than you."

Invited to the Prince's wedding, the Queen arrives to the Palace, and to her dread, realizes Snow White is the bride. As punishment, she is forced to wear heated iron shoes and dances in agony until collapsing on the floor dead.

Show AdaptationEdit

  • The Queen's hatred of Snow White originated when the young princess was unable to keep a secret from the Queen's mother Cora - an act of betrayal that resulted in the death of Regina's lover Daniel.
  • Snow White's mother is poisoned by Cora so that Regina can become queen instead, and also as revenge for Eva's role in ruining Cora's engagement to Snow White's father Leopold, and Cora giving up her first-born daughter
  • The diamonds mined by the seven dwarves are used to make fairy dust.
  • The seven dwarves have the names Sleepy, Dopey, Grumpy, Bashful, Happy, Sneezy and Doc, as in the Disney film
  • The prince is nicknamed "Charming" by Snow White. He is a shepherd in the guise of his twin brother who meets Snow White when she robs him.
  • The Huntsman presents the Queen with a stag's heart instead of a boar's lungs and liver.
  • The Poisoned Apple does not really contain poison, but a Sleeping Curse. The Queen obtained the curse from Maleficent rather than brewing it herself.
  • Snow White eats the poisoned apple to save Prince Charming's life after being presented it by the Queen.
  • Originally, the Magic Mirror was once a Genie, and becomes trapped as the Queen's slave after making a wish to forever stay by her side.
  • The Evil Queen arranged the murder of Snow White's father with the Magic Mirror's help.
  • The Evil Queen learned magic from Rumplestiltskin.
  • There were eight dwarves, but Stealthy was killed, leaving the remaining seven.
  • Grumpy's name was originally Dreamy.
  • The Evil Queen disguises herself as a miller's daughter and names herself "Wilma" with the help of Rumplestiltskin.

Characters FeaturedEdit

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