“If so,” Riquet with the Tuft responded, “I’ll gain my happiness, for you have the power to make me the most pleasing of men.”
“How can that be done?”
“It can if you love me sufficiently to wish that is should be. And to remove your doubts, you should know that the same fairy who endowed me at birth with the power to give intelligence to the person I chose also gave you the power to render handsome any man who please you.”
“If that’s so,” the princess said, “I wish with all my heart that you may become the most charming and handsome prince in the world.”
No sooner had the princess pronounced these words than Riquet with the Tuft appeared to her eyes as the most handsome, strapping, and charming man she had ever seen. There are some who assert that it was not the fairy’s spell but love alone that caused this transformation. They say that the princess, having reflected on her lover’s perseverance, prudence, and all the good qualities of his heart and mind, no longer saw the deformity of his body nor the ugliness of his features. His hunch appeared to her as nothing more than the effect of a man shrugging his shoulders. Likewise, his horrible limp appeared to be nothing more than a slight sway that charmed her. They also say that his eyes, which squinted, seemed to her only more brilliant for the proof they gave of the intensity of his love. Finally, his great red nose had something martial and heroic about it.
That which you see written down here
Is not so fantastic because it’s quite true:
We find what we love is wondrously fair,
In what we love we find intelligence, too.
Nature very often places
Beauty in an object that amazes,
Such that art can ne’er achieve.
Yet even beauty can’t move the heart
As much as that charm hard to chart,
A charm which only love can perceive.
-from “Riquet with the Tuft” by Charles Perrault