I’m searching for a fairy tale I’m almost sure I once read as a child about a Prince who was searching for his Princess. Because all the established Princesses he knew from surrounding kingdoms were snobs and he didn’t like them, he disguised himself as a poor traveler/peasant/normal person and began to travel around his kingdom searching for the right girl to make his Princess. Eventually he found one who was kind and showed all the qualities needed to be truly noble, and he revealed his true identity to her, took her back to his palace, and married her.

I’ve searched around but can’t seem to locate this particular story. I know it’s not Cinderella or the Princess and the Pea, even though there are some similarities to both of those stories in the one I described. It may have just been an original children’s book that was read to me, and I’m mistaking it for an actual classic fairy tale. Either way, I’d love to locate it, as it’s nagging me that I can’t hunt it down.

*Edit: I have no idea when the version of the story I read/was told would have been written, but it was definitely in English. However, if it was a retelling (in a children’s fairytale collection, for example), then I would have no idea of the language or time period the story originated in.

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    Do you know when the story was written and in what language? Any additional detail would help locate it. Jun 2, 2019 at 10:27
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    This is more of a trope than a single story. See e.g. King Incognito at TV Tropes - although that's more general, your specific story of a prince in disguise seeking a princess to marry is also a "classic", and there must be lots of fairy tales which fit.
    – Rand al'Thor
    Jun 3, 2019 at 10:50
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    It almost sounds like HC Andersen's The Swineherd: a handsome prince courts a princess with precious gifts, but she spurns him. Undaunted, he disguises himself as a poor peasant; he wins kisses from the princess in exchange for a toy, but when the emperor finds his daughter kissing a swineherd, they're both expelled from the kingdom. The princess laments that she shouldn't have spurned that nice prince; the prince drops his disguise, only to tell her he now despises her for her pettiness, and returns to his kingdom alone. Jun 4, 2019 at 1:36