Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997)
Fairy Godmother

The archetypal FG appears in "Cinderella" (1697) by Charles Perrault, where she provides the magical means by which Cinderella is able to go to the ball. Perrault used the feature of fairies attending christenings in his first Fairytale, "Sleeping Beauty" (1696), where it was the oversight in neglecting to invite one of the Fairies that caused the Curse to be laid on the baby. The FG has its origin in the Greek legend of the Fates: Sleeping Beauty falls into her deep sleep after her finger is pricked by the needle held by an old lady who is spinning. However, the FG as developed by Perrault has aspects of the guardian Angel and patron saint (> Patrons) – a supernatural being who has dominion and protection over our fate. [MA]

This entry is taken from the Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997) edited by John Clute and John Grant. It is provided as a reference and resource for users of the SF Encyclopedia, but apart from possible small corrections has not been updated.