The story is adapted from the Anderson fable of the sad little misfit who grows up to be the most beautiful of a ll the royal birds. The Ugly Duckling is born in a duckyard, and is cast out into the cruel world because he is different. Wherever he wanders, from the marshes to a little hut in the forest, he is rejected. The only creatures he relates to are some elegant swans flying south high above him. In the spring, having grown up, he stumbles onto the swans, who have returned. In despair, he goes to them to be killed, and suddenly discovers that he is the most beautiful swan of all!