The Happy Prince is a story written by author Oscar Wilde and was published in 1888. The story talks about a statue that can talk and then asks a swallow to do tasks for him. It is a simple yet meaningful story; therefore, this essay will first be about the summary of the story then it will discuss the symbolism of the statue of the Happy Prince, next it will show the contribution of the statue in the story, and the last paragraph will be the reflection of the whole story.
The story took place in a city where the statue of the happy prince, which was coated in gold, was placed in the middle of the city. One day a little swallow went to the city and then stayed on the statue. Night after night, the statue of the Happy Prince would ask the swallow to take the valuable things on his body and give them to the poor people until the statue had no jewel left. In the end, the swallow died, the statue was removed, and the swallow’s body and the statue’s heart were taken to heaven.
When the prince was still alive, he lived a happy life without knowing any misery outside his castle, but when he died and was built as a statue, he was portrayed as an empathetic prince. From the beginning till the end of the story, the statue of the happy prince was always thinking of his people, and since he was placed in the middle of the city, he could see everything from there. He would then ask the swallow, which was the only companion he had, to take his jewels and give them to the poor, and this is a qualification that a leader should have. The Happy Prince thought of his people as the most important thing in his life and he would do anything to make their lives better.
There are many contributions from the Happy Prince statue as it is written in the story. The first contribution is the ruby on the sword of the statue that he told the swallow to give it to a woman whose kid was ill. The others are the sapphire eyes that were later given to a writer and a young girl. Eventually, the gold which covered the statue was all given to the poor people in the city. However, these contributions are not recommended in the real society because it will not last forever and soon after the people will be back to their poor situation and the one who gives all the things is just punishing himself as he’s giving everything he has until he has none left, and in the end the one who gives will end up being poor just like the one to whom he’s given the things.
After reading and studying this story, I have come to realize that this story has given insight to its reader. First, it is shown that people should not think just about the outer beauty but also the inner as well. In the story, people love the statue of the happy prince as he is covered in gold and jewelry, but when all gold and jewelry are gone, the major tears down the statue and melt it in the furnace. And last thing is that people should help each other especially the rich should help the poor so that the society can get better.