a fairy tale by Danish poet and author Hans Christian Andersen first published 11 November 1843 in New Fairy Tales. First Book. First Collection.
"The Ugly Duckling" tells the story of a cygnet ostracized by his fellow barnyard fowl because of his perceived homeliness. To his delight (and to the surprise of others), he matures into a graceful swan, the most beautiful bird of all. With "Thumbelina" and other tales, "The Ugly Duckling" demonstrates Andersen's identification with, and his sympathies for, the 'outsider' searching for his or her place in society.