The Ugly Duckling is a literary fairy tale by Danish poet and author Hans Christian Andersen (1805-1875). The story tells of a homely little bird born in a barnyard who suffers abuse from his surroundings until, much to his delight (and to the surprise of others), he matures into a beautiful swan, the most beautiful bird of all. The story is beloved around the world as a tale about personal transformation for the better. The Ugly Duckling was first published on November 11th, 1843 with three other tales by Andersen in Copenhagen, Denmark to great critical acclaim. The tale is completely Andersen's invention and owes no debt to fairy or folklore. Beautifully illustrated, this classic tale will capture children's interest and spark their imagination inspiring a lifelong love of literature and reading.