A village from the time of Hans Christian Andersen
'The Ugly Duckling' (1843), Hans Christian Andersen.
Hans Christian Andersen was Denmark's great author of the 19th century. In a way, he could be said to be the Dane of the 19th century. He made use of Danish surroundings when writing his tales and, in his comprehensive memoirs, he has described a Denmark and a world in a process of colossal change.
If you look at the history of the 19th century in a little more detail, you soon discover that it was one characterised by incredible technical, political, social and economic progress. In a sense, it was a precursor of the 20th century, which it thought of by most people as being the century of development.
In many ways, Hans Christian Andersen's age was just as interesting as the 20th century. For he experienced both an old form of society that pointed back to the Renaissance and the Middle Ages as well as a new democratic, technically advanced one that pointed forwards. In his work he find traces of all of this, including his illuminating remarks on both Funen village life and the world of the 19th century.