Copenhagen - A previously unknown story by Danish author Hans Christian Andersen has surfaced in the Scandinavian country, daily Politiken reported Thursday.
The 700-word story, The Tallow Candle, is believed to be the earliest fairy tale by Andersen, who wrote some of history's most memorable children's tales - among them The Ugly Duckling, The Little Mermaid and The Emperor's New Clothes.
Andersen lived between 1805 and 1875. His works have been translated into scores of languages.
Local historian Esben Brage made the find in October while perusing documents in a box stored at the Provincial Archives of Funen in Odense, Andersen's hometown.
Brage said he realised he had found something "exceptional" when he first held the document, written in ink, the report said.
The document contained a dedication to a vicar's widow, Madame Bunkeflod, who lived opposite Andersen's childhood home. He used to visit her to read and borrow books.//DPA