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The motif The concept of the soul's account of good and evil being settled after death in HCA : Aunty (1866)
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The motif The concept of the soul's account of good and evil being settled after death in HCA : Aunty (1866)

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See also To die and go to heaven

Keywords:

Deeds, mind, good, evil, settling one's account, God, St Peter

Description of this motif: In some of Andersen's fairy tales people have their life's account of good and evil deeds, sometimes also thoughts, settled after death, before the gates of heaven. "Something", " Kept Secret but not Forgotten" and "The Girl Who Trod on the Loaf" are three obvious examples of this theme.

Example :

The story the agent told was amusing enough to hear, but there were mockery and spite behind it.

"It was very dark up there," said the agent, "but then the witchery began, the great spectacle, Judgment Day at the Theater. Ticket takers were at the doors, and every spectator had to show his spiritual testimonial, to decide whether he could enter free or handcuffed, and with or without a muzzle. Fine society people, who came too late, after the performance had begun, and young fellows who wasted their time were hitched outside. There they were muzzled, and had felt soles put under their shoes, to walk in on in time for the beginning of the next scene. And then they began Judgment Day at the Theater.

"Purely wickedness," said Aunty, "which our Lord knows nothing about!"

Had the scene painter wanted to get into heaven he would have had to climb up some stairs he had painted himself but which were too steep for anybody to use. That, of course, was because of his sin against perspective. The stage carpenter who had placed the plants and buildings in lands where they didn't belong had to move them into their proper places before cockcrowing time, if he expected to go to heaven. Mr. Nob would have to watch his own chances of getting there! And to hear what he said about the actors, both in comedy and tragedy, or in song and dance – why, it was shameful of Mr. Nob! Mr. Nob! He never deserved his place in the cockloft! Aunty didn't believe a word of what he said. He had written it all out, he said – the snob! – and would have it printed, but not until he was dead and buried, since he had no wish to be skinned alive.

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