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Encyclopedia > Iron John

"Iron John" is a German fairy tale found in the collections of the Brothers Grimm, tale number 136, about a wild man and a prince. (The original German title is Eisenhans, a compound of Eisen "iron" and Hans, like English John a common short form of the personal name Johannes) It represents Aarne-Thompson type 502, "The wild man as a helper".[1] A fairy tale is a story, either told to children or as if told to children, concerning the adventures of mythical characters such as fairies, goblins, elves, trolls, giants, and others. ... Jakob and Wilhelm Grimm The Brothers Grimm (Brüder Grimm) are Jakob and Wilhelm Grimm. ... Hans is a masculine given name. ... Latin form of the Greek name Ιωαννης (Ioannes), itself derived from the Hebrew name Yochanan meaning YAHWEH is gracious. In Germany the name Johannes is diminutized to Hänsel. ... Antti Amatus Aarne (1867 - 1925) was a Finnish folklorist, who developed the initial version of what became the Aarne-Thompson classification system of classifying folktales, first published in 1910. ...

Most people see the story as a parable about a boy maturing into adulthood. The story also became the basis for the book Iron John: A Book About Men which spawned the Men's Movement in the early 90's. This article is about the human developmental stage. ... Iron John: A Book About Men (ISBN 0201517205) is a book by American Poet Robert Bly published in 1990. ... The mens movement is a social movement that includes a number of philosophies and organizations that seek to support men, change the male gender role and improve mens rights in regard to marriage and child access and victims of domestic violence. ... This article is about the year. ...



A king sends a huntsmen into a forest nearby, and the huntsman never returns. The king sends more, each meeting with the same fate, until the king sends all his remaining huntsmen out as a group, but again, none return. The king proclaims the woods as dangerous and off-limits to all. For the documentary series, see Monarchy (TV series). ... Enchanted Forest entrance The Enchanted Forest is a now-closed theme park in Ellicott City, Maryland, on U.S. Highway 40 near the intersection with Bethany Lane. ...

Some years later, a wandering explorer and his dog hear of these dangerous woods and ask permission to hunt in the forest, claiming that he might be able to discover the fate of the other hunters. They are allowed to enter, and as they come to a lake in the middle of the forest, the dog is almost dragged under by a huge arm. The hunter returns to the forest the next day with a group of men to empty the lake. They find a naked man with skin like iron and long shaggy hair all over his body. They capture him, and where he is locked in a cage in the courtyard as a curiosity. No one is allowed to set the wild man free, on penalty of death. Trinomial name Canis lupus familiaris The dog (Canis lupus familiaris) is a domestic subspecies of the wolf, a mammal of the Canidae family of the order Carnivora. ... For other uses, see Lake (disambiguation). ... General Name, symbol, number iron, Fe, 26 Chemical series transition metals Group, period, block 8, 4, d Appearance lustrous metallic with a grayish tinge Standard atomic weight 55. ... This article is about the body feature. ... Look up cage in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... A court or courtyard is an enclosed area, often a space enclosed by a building that is open to the sky. ... Death penalty, death sentence, and execution redirect here. ...

Years later the young prince is playing with a ball in the courtyard. He accidentally rolls it into the cage where the wild man picks it up and will only return it if he is set free. He states further that the only key to the cage is hidden beneath the queen’s pillow.

Though the prince hesitates at first, eventually he builds up the courage to sneak into his mother’s room and steal the key. He releases the wild man, who reveals his name to be Iron John (or Iron Hans, depending on the translation). The prince fears he will be killed for setting Iron John free, so Iron John agrees to take the prince with him into the forest.

As it turns out, Iron John is a powerful being and has many treasures he guards. He sets the prince to watch over his well, but warns him not to let anything touch it or fall in because it will turn instantly to gold. The prince obeys at first, but begins to play in the well, finally turning all his hair into gold. Disappointed in the boy’s failure, Iron John sends him away to experience poverty and struggle, but also tells the prince that if he ever needs anything, simply to call the name of Iron John three times. GOLD refers to one of the following: GOLD (IEEE) is an IEEE program designed to garner more student members at the university level (Graduates of the Last Decade). ... A boy from Jakarta, Indonesia shows his find. ...

The prince travels to a distant land and offers his services to it's king. Since he is ashamed of his golden hair, he refuses to remove his cap before the king and is sent to assist the gardener.

When war comes to the kingdom, the prince sees his chance to make a name for himself. He calls upon Iron John who gives him a horse, armor, and a legion of iron warriors to fight alongside him. The prince successfully defends his new homeland, but returns all that he borrowed to Iron John before returning to his former position.

In celebration, the king announces a banquet and offers his daughter’s hand in marriage to any one of the knights who can catch a golden apple that will be thrown into their midst. The king hopes that the mysterious knight who saved the kingdom will show himself for such a prize. For other uses, see Knight (disambiguation) or Knights (disambiguation). ... This article is about the fruit. ...

Again the prince asks Iron John for help, and again Iron John disguises the prince as the mysterious knight. Though the prince catches the golden apple and escapes, and does so again on two more occasions, he is eventually found out. The prince is returned to his former station, marries the princess, and is happily reunited with his parents. Iron John too, comes to the wedding, but now without the hair or iron skin that made him frightening. He reveals he was under enchantment until he found someone worthy and pure of heart to set him free.


This tale is known throughout Europe, in such variants as The Hairy Man.[2] A more wide-spread variant, found in Europe, Asia, and Africa, opens with the prince for some reason being the servant of an evil being, where he gains the same gifts, and the tale proceeds as in this variant; one such tale is The Magician's Horse.[3] The Hairy Man ( also called Machmud G. ) is a Russian fairy tale. ... Please wikify (format) this article or section as suggested in the Guide to layout and the Manual of Style. ...

The oldest variant to be preserved is the Italian Guerrino and the Savage Man.[4] Another such variant is Georgic and Merlin.[5] Guerrino and the Savage Man is an Italian literary fairy tale written by Giovanni Francesco Straparola in The Facetious Nights of Straparola. ... Georgic and Merlin is a French fairy tale collected by François Cadic in La Paroisse bretonne.[1] It is Aarne-Thompson type 502. ...

See also

The Hairy Man ( also called Machmud G. ) is a Russian fairy tale. ... The Gold-bearded Man is a Hungarian fairy tale collected in Ungarische Mahrchen. ... Enkidu (𒂗𒆠𒆕 EN.KI.DU3 Enkis creation) appears in Sumerian mythology as a mythical wild-man raised by animals. ... Sumer (or Shumer, Sumeria, Shinar, native ki-en-gir) formed the southern part of Mesopotamia from the time of settlement by the Sumerians until the time of Babylonia. ... This article is about the feral child. ...


  1. ^ D.L. Ashliman, "The Grimm Brothers' Children's and Household Tales (Grimms' Fairy Tales)"
  2. ^ Stith Thompson, The Folktale, p 60-1, University of California Press, Berkeley Los Angeles London, 1977
  3. ^ Stith Thompson, The Folktale, p 59-60, University of California Press, Berkeley Los Angeles London, 1977
  4. ^ Paul Delarue, The Borzoi Book of French Folk-Tales, p 384, Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., New York 1956
  5. ^ Paul Delarue, The Borzoi Book of French Folk-Tales, p 384, Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., New York 1956

External links

  Results from FactBites:
Iron John pre-ironic manhood. - By Jess Row - Slate Magazine (1356 words)
In 1990, the year Iron John was published, I was 16, and I vividly remember picking up a newspaper published by the "Mythopoetic Men's Movement" in a health-food store and doubling over with laughter at the pictures of half-naked men embracing tree trunks and dancing around wearing leaf-crowns.
Iron John is structured around an allegorical interpretation of a German fairy tale, "Iron Hans," in which a young prince is lured into the forest by a strange wild man, who, through a series of trials and lessons, initiates him into manhood.
Iron John was written before Seinfeld, before David Sedaris and A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, and reading it today reveals how much American culture has changed over the last decade and a half.
The Iron Hypothesis (3256 words)
John Martin's iron hypothesis—fertilizing the sea with iron—was first put to the test on the open ocean in 1993.
Iron would have to be dumped repeatedly on a vast scale to have a significant effect on climate.
Iron needs to be exposed to sunlight to stay in solution and to remain available to phytoplankton.
  More results at FactBites »



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