What Are the Characteristics of Folktales?

By Staff WriterLast Updated Apr 15, 2020 6:19:42 AM ET

Folk tales are stories passed down by oral tradition. Though there are many varieties of folk tales, they are commonly about regular people in everyday settings. When supernatural activity is involved, it generally happens to common people. Furthermore, animal characters in folk tales take on distinctly human sentiments and realities.

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Folk tales are simple in their subjects and assertions while containing a moral. The information and experience found within folktales are simple because they are intended to be pertinent and helpful to every day people. The morals within are intended for the same audience and strive to inform listeners of important life lessons and ways to behave.