About fisherman and fish


What does the "Tale of the Fisherman and the Fish" by Pushkin teach: analysis of the work

The tales of A.S. Pushkin are an example of how a common plot can become a masterpiece of a high literary language. The poet managed to convey in a poetic form not only the characters of the heroes, but also a prerequisite for any such narrative - a teaching, that is, what the fairy tale teaches. "About the Fisherman and the Fish" is a story about human greed. The tale "About Tsar Saltan" that evil and deceit are punishable, and good always triumphs. So in the plots of all fairy tales written by the poet.

Summary of the work

When teachers explain to schoolchildren what the Tale of the Fisherman and the Fish teaches (grade 2), they rely on the plot of the work. This is correct, as children must understand which main categories drive people's actions: good and evil, generosity and greed, betrayal and forgiveness, and many others. Fairy tales help children understand them and make the right choice in favor of good.

In the tale of the Golden Fish, the plot begins with the fact that an old man and an old woman lived on the shores of the blue sea. He fished, she spun yarn, but their shack was old and even a broken trough.

The old man was lucky to catch the Golden Fish, who begged to return her to the sea and even offered something for herself.

The kind fisherman let her go, but to the old woman his noble deed was not to his liking, so he demanded that he return to the sea and ask the fish at least a trough. The old man did just that. The fish gave what the old woman wished, but she wanted more - a new hut, then to be a head noblewoman, then a free queen, until she decided to become the Lady, whose fish was on the packages.

The wise fish fulfilled the requests of the old woman, until she demanded the impossible. That left the old woman again at the broken trough.

The children, reading about the history of the old man, understand what Pushkin’s “The Tale of the Fisherman and the Fish” teaches. The power and wealth each time changed the old woman, making her all the angrier. Schoolchildren make the right conclusion that greed is punishable, and you can again be left with nothing.

The author himself put a deeper meaning in his fairy tale, especially if one considers what lies at its core.

The Tale of the Brothers Grimm

If we take as a basis the philosophical categories of what the Tale of the Fisherman and the Fish teaches, the analysis should begin with the tale of the Brothers Grimm. It was with their story about the greedy old woman, who, starting to wish for small things, reached the point that she wanted to become a Pope, was familiar to the poet.

It seems that the usual human greed in the plot of the instructive story, but if you pay attention to the symbolism inherent in it, what the Tale of the Fisherman and the Fish teaches acquires a completely different meaning. As it turned out, the Brothers Grimm, and behind them Pushkin, are far from the first to use this topic.

Vedic wisdom

In the ancient Indian treatise Matsya Purana, it is presented in the form of an allegory. For example, the old man in it is the real “I” of a person, his soul, which is in a state of rest (nirvana). In Pushkin’s fairy tale, this is exactly how a fisherman appears before readers. He has been living with an old woman in a shack for 33 years, he is fishing and he is happy with everything. Is this not a sign of enlightenment?

This is what the Tale of the Fisherman and the Fish teaches: the true purpose of man is to be in harmony with his soul and the surrounding reality. The old man coped well with the vast and full of temptations in the material world, which symbolizes the blue sea.

He throws a net with his desires into him and gets what he needs for the day to live. Another thing - the old woman.

Old woman

It personifies human egoism, which is never completely satisfied, and therefore does not know what happiness is. Egoism wants to consume as much material wealth as possible. That is why, starting from the trough, the old woman soon wanted to rule over the fish itself.

If in the ancient treatise its image is a symbol of man’s renunciation of his spiritual nature in favor of the false consciousness and the material world, then Pushkin has an evil egoistic principle that makes an old man (a pure soul) indulge her whims.

The Russian poet very well described the submission of the soul to egoism. The old man every time goes to bow to the Goldfish with a new demand from the old woman. It is symbolic that the sea, which is a prototype of the vast material world, every time becomes more formidable. By this, Pushkin showed how great the gap between the pure soul and its destiny is, when each time it sinks deeper and deeper into the abyss of material wealth.


In Vedic culture, the fish represents God. It is no less powerful in the work of Pushkin. If you think about what the Tale of the Fisherman and the Fish teaches, the answers will be obvious: a false selfish shell cannot give a person happiness. For this, he needs not material wealth, but the unity of the soul with God, which manifests itself in a harmonious state of peace and receiving joy from being.

Thrice is a fish to an old man to fulfill selfish desires, but as it turned out, even a sea sorceress cannot fill the false shell.

The struggle of the spiritual and egoistic beginning

A lot of philosophical, religious, artistic and psychological books have been written about this fight. Both beginnings - the pure soul (in the fairy tale of Pushkin the old man) and egoism (the old woman) are fighting among themselves. The poet has very well shown the consequences of obedience and indulgence of selfish desires.

His main character did not even try to resist the old woman, and each time he dutifully went to the fish to bow with a new demand from her. Alexander Sergeevich showed exactly what the connivance of such selfishness leads to, and how his false, insatiable needs end.

Today, the phrase "stay with nothing" is used at the household level when it comes to human greed.

In philosophy, its meaning is much broader. Not material wealth makes people happy. The behavior of the old woman speaks of this. Only she became a high-ranking noblewoman, as she wished to be a queen, and then more. She did not radiate happiness and contentment with the emergence of new types of power and wealth.

This is what the Tale of the Fisherman and the Fish teaches: to remember the soul that it is primary and the material world is secondary and cunning. Today, a person may be in power, and tomorrow he will become impoverished and unknown, like the old woman at that ill-fated trough.

So the children's tale of the Russian poet conveys the depth of the eternal confrontation between the ego and the soul, about which people knew in ancient times.

"The Tale of the Fisherman and the Fish" by A. S. Pushkin. Tale of a goldfish in a new way

Who among us since childhood is not familiar with the "Tale of the Fisherman and the Fish"? Someone read it in childhood, someone first met her when he saw a cartoon on TV. The plot of the work is undoubtedly familiar to everyone. But not many people know how and when this fairy tale was written. It is about the creation, origins and characters of this work, we will talk in our article. And also we will consider modern alterations of a fairy tale.

Who wrote the story about the goldfish and when?

The fairy tale was written by the great Russian poet Alexander Sergeevich Pushkin in the village of Boldino on October 14, 1833. This period in the work of the writer is called the second Boldino autumn. The work was first published in 1835 in the pages of the Library for Reading magazine. At the same time, Pushkin created another famous work - "The Tale of the Dead Princess and Seven Heroes".

History of creation

Back in early action, A. S. Pushkin became interested in folk art. The tales he had heard in the cradle of his beloved nanny were preserved in his memory for a lifetime. In addition, later, already in the 20s of the 19th century, the poet was studying folk folklore in the village of Mikhailovsky. It was then that he began to appear ideas of future fairy tales.

However, Pushkin turned directly to the folk stories only in the 30s. He began to try himself in the creation of fairy tales. One of them was a fairy tale about a goldfish. In this work, the poet tried to show the nationality of Russian literature.

For whom did A.S. Pushkin write fairy tales?

Pushkin wrote fairy tales in the highest flowering of his work. And initially they were not intended for children, although they immediately entered the circle of their reading. The tale of a goldfish is not just fun for children with morality at the end. This is primarily a sample of creativity, traditions and beliefs of the Russian people.

Nevertheless, the plot of the tale itself is not an exact retelling of folk works. In fact, not much of Russian folklore is reflected in it. Many researchers claim that most of the poet’s tales, including the tale about a goldfish (the text of the work confirms this), were borrowed from German tales collected by the Grimm brothers.

Pushkin chose the plot he liked, reworked it at his discretion, and clothed him in a poetic form, without worrying about how authentic the stories would be. However, the poet managed to convey, if not the plot, then the spirit and character of the Russian people.

Images of the main characters

The tale of a goldfish is not rich in characters - there are only three of them, however, this is enough for a fascinating and instructive plot.

The images of the old man and the old woman are diametrically opposed, and their views on life are completely different. They are both poor, but reflecting different sides of poverty. So, the old man is always disinterested and ready to help in trouble, because he has repeatedly been in the same position and knows what grief is. He is kind and calm, even when he was lucky, he does not use the offer of the fish, but simply releases it.

The old woman, despite the same social situation, is arrogant, cruel and greedy. She pushed around the old man, tormented him, constantly scolding and always displeased with all. For this, she will be punished at the end of the tale, left with a broken trough.

However, the old man does not receive any reward, because he is unable to resist the will of the old woman. For his humility he did not deserve a better life. Here Pushkin describes one of the main features of the Russian people - long-suffering. That it does not allow you to live better and calmer.

The image of the fish is incredibly poetic and imbued with popular wisdom. It acts as a higher power, which for the time being is ready to fulfill desires. However, her patience is not unlimited.


The tale of an old man and a goldfish begins with a description of the blue sea, on the coast of which an old man and an old woman have been living in a dugout for 33 years. They live very poorly and the only thing that feeds them is the sea.

One day an old man goes fishing. He throws a net twice, but both times he brings only sea mud. For the third time, the old man is lucky - a goldfish falls into his nets. She speaks in a human voice and asks to let her go, promising to fulfill her wish. The old man did not ask anything from the fish, but simply let it go.

Returning home, he told everything to his wife. The old woman began to scold him and told him to go back, to ask the fish for a new trough. The old man went, bowed to the fish, and the old woman received what she asked for.

But that was not enough for her. She demanded a new home. Fish fulfilled this desire. Then the old woman wanted to become a pillar noblewoman. Again the old man went to the fish, and again she fulfilled the desire. The fisherman himself was sent by an evil wife to work at the stable.

But this was not enough. The old woman told her husband to go back to the sea and ask her to make her a queen. This desire has been fulfilled. But this did not satisfy the old woman’s greed. She again called the old man to her place and told her to ask the fish to make her the tsarina of the sea, while she served on her packages.

I gave the fisherman his wife's words. But the fish didn’t answer, just splashed its tail and swam away to the depths of the sea. For a long time he stood by the sea, waiting for an answer. But the fish no longer appeared, and the old man returned home. And there an old woman waited for him with a trough, sitting by the old dugout.

Plot source

As noted above, the fairy tale about a fisherman and a goldfish has its roots not only in Russian, but also in foreign folklore. So, the plot of this work is often compared with the fairy tale "The Greedy Old Woman", which was part of the collection of the Brothers Grimm. However, this resemblance is very remote. German authors focused all their attention on the moral conclusion - greed is not good enough, you should be able to be content with what you have.

The actions in the fairy tale of the Brothers Grimm also unfold on the seashore, however, instead of a goldfish, the flounder acts as the executor of desires, which later becomes the enchanted prince. Pushkin replaced this image with a goldfish, symbolizing wealth and luck in Russian culture.

Tale of a goldfish in a new way

Today you can find a lot of alterations of this tale in a new way. Characteristic of them is the change of time. That is, from old times the main characters are transferred to the modern world, where there is also a lot of poverty and injustice. The moment of catching a goldfish remains unchanged, like the magic heroine herself. But the desire of the old woman change. Now she needs an Indesit car, new boots, a villa, a Ford. She wants to be a blonde with long legs.

In some alterations, the end of the story also changes. The tale can end with a happy family life of an old man and an old woman who has looked younger by 40 years. However, such an end is the exception rather than the rule. Usually the ending is either close to the original, or tells of the death of an old man or old woman.


Thus, the tale about a goldfish lives to this day and remains relevant. This is confirmed by many of its alterations. The sound of a new way gives her a new life, but the problems laid down by Pushkin, even in the alterations, remain unchanged.

All about the same heroes tell these new options, all the same and greedy old woman, and a humble old man, and a wish-fulfilling fish, which indicates the incredible skill and talent of Pushkin, who managed to write a work that remains relevant and after almost two centuries.

Tales of Pushkin - The Tale of the Fisherman and the Fish