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Description of this motif:

Humility is in Andersen's writings almost always connected with persons' being world-oriented, thus often also against its creator, God, or being self-centered. Self-satisfied and self-sufficient characters are often exposed in Andersen' oeuvre. Their charateristics are pettiness, intolerance, a narrow mind, insensibility, being ungratified, because the world seems cruel and unjust and doesn't give them enough, and arrogant pride. The proud and self-sufficient persons thinks that all that is good comes from him-/herself. The humble sees the world around her and her own conditions as sent from God. The humble is satisfied with the facts of life and even thanks (God) for everything.

The rose in "The Snail and the Rosebush" is, in contradiction to the snail, a pious grateful and extrovert type, giving its best to the world. "The Snail and the Rosebush" is a textbook example of the motif and is in addition extraordinary, because God isn't mentioned explicitly as the source of the gifts of life.

Example :

"I can walk!" he shouted. "Oh, Lord, my God!" And he cried out of sheer joy.

Comment on this quote: Hans, the cripple, has regained the use of his legs. The cat was about to attack the bird, Hans received as a present from the noble family. In order to save the bird, he had to get out of bed and stand on his legs. The situation induced a miracle. The bird, Hans was given by the noble family, his parents work for, has, as another present from there, a book pf fairytales, caused inner transformations.