Wicked Stepmother in Fairy Tales
Aging and Death in Folklore
Read this bit: "The greedy brother, we are told, had an old stepmother, and he killed her outright, taking the body to market hoping for a similarly high price." Read this and other stories.
Cinderella or the little Glass Slipper
"The wedding festivities were no sooner over than the stepmother began to show herself in her true colours." Read the story of Cinderella and her evil stepmother...
Dictionary of Phrase and Fable: Stepmother
"A stepmother is the mother of one bereaved of his mother by death."
Euripides (480-406 BC) is quoted: "Better a serpent than a stepmother!"
Origins and Diffusion of Folktales
"No one theory listed below has been proved true; probably all of them have some points of validity." Read about fairies, good children and evil stepmothers.
The term is defined: "The wife of one's father and not one's natural mother."
Tales from Shakespeare: Cymbeline
"Cymbeline was twice married: his second wife was a wicked, plotting woman, and a cruel stepmother to Imogen, Cymbeline’s daughter by his first wife."
The Fantasy of the Wicked Stepmother
Read more about the character of the Wicked Stepmother in Russian Fairy Tales.
The Wicked Stepmother (India)
Read this tale from India, where the stepchildren get "stronger and stronger." And, the stepmother "was surprised to see them getting so fat and strong while she was giving them so little food."