The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

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The Wonderful Wizard of Oz  (1900) 
by L. Frank Baum
The Wondeful Wizard of Oz is a children's novel written by L. Frank Baum and illustrated by W. W. Denslow. It was originally published by the George M. Hill Company in Chicago in 1900, and has since been reprinted countless times, sometimes under the name The Wizard of Oz. The story chronicles the adventures of a girl named Dorothy in the Land of Oz. It is one of the best-known stories in American popular culture and has been widely translated. Its initial success led to Baum's writing and having published thirteen more Oz books.
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Wizard title page.jpg

Introduction[edit]

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Folklore, legends, myths and fairy tales have followed childhood through the ages, for every healthy youngster has a wholesome and instinctive love for stories fantastic, marvelous and manifestly unreal. The winged fairies of Grimm and Andersen have brought more happiness to childish hearts than all other human creations.

Yet the old time fairy tale, having served for generations, may now be classed as "historical" in the children's library; for the time has come for a series of newer "wonder tales" in which the stereotyped genie, dwarf and fairy are eliminated, together with all the horrible and blood-curdling incidents devised by their authors to point a fearsome moral to each tale. Modern education includes morality; therefore the modern child seeks only entertainment in its wonder tales and gladly dispenses with all disagreeable incident.

Having this thought in mind, the story of "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" was written solely to please children of today. It aspires to being a modernized fairy tale, in which the wonderment and joy are retained and the heartaches and nightmares are left out.

L. Frank Baum
Chicago, April, 1900.


Contents[edit]