ENotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of The Lady or the Tiger?. Did the tiger or the lady come out of the doorway? The princess loved the. In this lesson, we will examine the characters from Frank R. Stockton's 'The Lady, or the Tiger?' It is a fairytale about love, jealousy, and justice. "The Lady, or the Tiger?" is a much-anthologized short story written by Frank R. Stockton for publication in the magazine The Century in "The Lady, or the  ‎Plot summary · ‎Other works · ‎By Stockton · ‎By other artists.


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Behind one of the identical doors lurked a ferocious tiger that would leap out and devour the accused; behind the other door awaited a lovely maid who would, if her door was the one opened, come forth and be married at once to the opener.

It mattered not that the man may be married or otherwise committed, for the whimsical king would have his justice. The fate was to be decided by chance alone, and no one who knew of the placement behind the doors was allowed to inform him which to elect.

the tiger or the lady

All of this was popular among the audience, and even their thinking members could not deny that it was a fair test.

And I remember thinking, "Well, that's a cool saying. Now what the heck does it mean?

The Lady, or the Tiger? - Wikipedia

Stockton's 'The Lady, or the Tiger? Background Imagine being faced with the choice of having your love eaten by a tiger in front of your eyes or having him marry a beautiful woman and watching them live happily together for the rest of your life. Once the ceremony was complete, the blindfold was removed and the tiger or the lady turned to find 40 ladies standing before him, one of whom was his new bride.


If he did not correctly identify her, the Discourager would execute him on the spot. The prince narrowed the possibilities down to two, one lady smiling and one frowning, and made the correct choice.

The Lady or the Tiger? Summary -

The kingdom official tells the tiger or the lady five travelers that once they figure out which lady the prince had married, he will tell them the outcome of "The Lady, or the Tiger? By other artists[ edit ] A play adaptation by Sydney Rosenfeld debuted at Wallack's Theatre in ran for seven weeks.

No wonder the princess loved him! What a terrible thing for him to be there! As the youth advanced into the arena he turned, as the custom was, to bow to the king, but he did not think at all of that royal personage.

The Lady or the Tiger? Summary

His eyes were fixed upon the princess, who sat the tiger or the lady the right of her father. Had it not been for the moiety of barbarism in her nature it is probable that lady would not have been there, but her intense and fervid soul would not allow her to be absent on an occasion in which she was so terribly interested.


From the tiger or the lady moment that the decree had gone forth that her lover should decide his fate in the king's arena, she had thought of nothing, night or day, but this great event and the various subjects connected with it.

Possessed of more power, influence, and force of character than any one who had ever before been interested in such a case, she had done what no other person had done - she had possessed herself of the secret of the doors. She knew in which of the two rooms, that lay behind those doors, stood the cage of the tiger, with its open front, and in which waited the lady.

Through these thick doors, heavily curtained with skins on the inside, it was impossible that any noise or suggestion should come from within to the person the tiger or the lady should approach to raise the latch of one of them.

But gold, and the the tiger or the lady of a woman's will, had brought the secret to the princess. It was one of the fairest and loveliest of the damsels of the court who had been selected as the reward of the accused youth, should he be proved innocent of the crime of aspiring to one so far above him; and the princess hated her.

Often had she seen, or imagined that she had seen, this fair creature throwing glances of admiration upon the person of her lover, and sometimes she thought these glances were perceived, and even returned. Now and then she had seen them talking together; it was but for a moment or two, but much can be said in a brief space; it may have been on most unimportant topics, but how could she know that?

'The Lady, or the Tiger?' by Frank R. Stockton

The girl was lovely, but she had dared the tiger or the lady raise her eyes to the loved one of the princess; and, with all the intensity of the savage blood transmitted to her through long lines of wholly barbaric ancestors, she hated the woman who blushed and trembled behind that silent door.

When her lover turned and looked at her, and his eye met hers as she sat there, paler and whiter than any one in the vast ocean of anxious faces about her, he saw, by that power of quick perception which is given to those whose the tiger or the lady are one, that she knew behind which door crouched the tiger, and behind which stood the lady.

Take the horse, or leave it outside? And in the Odyssey: Well, sink or swim, chiefly.