A Story From: England
Read Time: ["16 to 20mins"]
For Ages: 8 to 10yrs., 12 to 14yrs.
If You Like This Story You Will Love:
Retold by Elaine L. Lindy. ©2005. All rights reserved.
The original poem, "Goblin's Market," was written by English poet, Christina Rossetti (1830 - 1894) and first published in 1862.
Lindy asks poetry lovers and followers of Christina Rossetti's work to forgive her liberties in revising Rossetti's poetic legacy. Certain words youngsters today would stumble upon - ("purloin", "furze", "copse", "dingle") and so they were revised. The original name "Laura" was changed to "Sarah" to differentiate it more clearly from her sister "Lizzie." The original title, "Goblin Market" was changed to "The Goblin's Market". A goodly portion of the text, also regrettably, was shortened to heighten the momentum of the drama. This version of the poem was tested and re-tested before children to ensure a crowd-pleasing effect.
Scholar W. Glasgow Phillips suggests that Rossetti is the first English author to create a true female heroine. Female protagonists had existed before, of course, such as Elizabeth in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice (1813), but they had no outlet for heroic action. Elizabeth had to spend a good deal of her energy waiting for Darcy to take action; she herself was constrained by the requirements of polite society. "Lizzie," on the other hand according to Phillips, "actively pursues temptation with the purpose of conquering it."