The Adventures of Pinocchio character
Original art by Enrico Mazzanti
First appearanceThe Adventures of Pinocchio (1883)
Created byCarlo Collodi
In-universe information
SpeciesWooden marionette (later human)
FamilyGeppetto (father)

Pinocchio (/pɪˈnki/ pih-NOH-kee-oh,[1] Italian: [piˈnɔkkjo]) is a fictional character and the protagonist of the children's novel The Adventures of Pinocchio (1883) by Italian writer Carlo Collodi of Florence, Tuscany.[2][3] Pinocchio was carved by a woodcarver named Geppetto in a Tuscan village. He was created as a wooden puppet but he dreams of becoming a real boy. He is notably characterized for his frequent tendency to lie, which causes his nose to grow.[4]

Pinocchio is a cultural icon. He is one of the most re-imagined characters in children's literature. His story has been adapted into many other media, notably the 1940 Disney film Pinocchio.[5] Collodi often used the Italian Tuscan dialect in his book. The name Pinocchio is a combination of the Italian words pino (pine), and occhio (eye); Pino is also an abbreviation of Giuseppino, the diminutive for Giuseppe (the Italian form of Joseph); one of the men who greatly influenced Collodi in his youth was Giuseppe Aiazzi, a prominent Italian manuscript specialist who supervised Collodi at the Libreria Piatti bookshop in Florence. Geppetto, the name of Pinocchio's creator and “father,” is the diminutive for Geppo, the Tuscan pronunciation of ceppo, meaning a log, stump, block, stock or stub.

Fictional character biography

Main article: The Adventures of Pinocchio

Pinocchio, by Carlo Chiostri (1901)
Pinocchio, by Carlo Chiostri (1901)

Pinocchio's characterization varies across interpretations, but several aspects are consistent across all adaptations: Pinocchio is a puppet, Pinocchio's maker is Geppetto and Pinocchio's nose grows when he lies.[6]

Pinocchio is known for having a short nose that becomes longer when he is under stress (chapter 3), especially while lying. In the original tale, Collodi describes him as a "rascal," "imp," "scapegrace" (mischievous or wayward person), "disgrace," "ragamuffin," and "confirmed rogue," with even his father, carpenter Geppetto, referring to him as a "wretched boy." Upon being born, Pinocchio immediately laughs derisively in his creator's face, whereupon he steals the old man's wig.

Pinocchio's bad behavior, rather than being charming or endearing, is meant to serve as a warning. Collodi originally intended the story, which was first published in 1881, to be a tragedy. It concluded with the puppet's execution. Pinocchio's enemies, the Fox and the Cat, bind his arms, pass a noose around his throat, and hang him from the branch of an oak tree.[7]

A tempestuous northerly wind began to blow and roar angrily, and it beat the poor puppet from side to side, making him swing violently, like the clatter of a bell ringing for a wedding. And the swinging gave him atrocious spasms...His breath failed him and he could say no more. He shut his eyes, opened his mouth, stretched his legs, gave a long shudder, and hung stiff and insensible.


Clothing and character

Pinocchio is a wooden marionette (a puppet that is manipulated with wires) and not a hand puppet (directly controlled from inside by the puppeteer's hand). However, the piece of wood from which he is derived is animated, and so Pinocchio moves independently. Basically good, he often gets carried away by bad company and is prone to lying. His nose will become longer and longer once he starts lying to others.[3] Because of these characteristics, he often finds himself in trouble. Pinocchio undergoes transformations during the novel: he promises The Fairy with Turquoise Hair to become a real boy, flees with Candlewick to the Land of Toys, becomes a donkey, joins a circus, and becomes a puppet again. In the last chapter, out of the mouth of The Terrible Dogfish with Geppetto, Pinocchio finally stops being a puppet and becomes a real boy (thanks to the intervention of the Fairy in a dream).

In the novel, Pinocchio is often depicted with a pointy hat, a jacket and a pair of colored, knee-length pants. In the Disney version, the appearance is different; the character is dressed in Tyrolean style, with Lederhosen and a hat with a feather.


Pinocchio's nose is his best-known characteristic. It grows in length when he tells a lie; this appears in chapter XVI. Collodi himself, in Note gaie claims how "to hide the truth of a speculum animae (mirror of the soul) face [ ... ] is added to the true nose another papier-mache nose." There is an inconsistency, however, because his nose grows when it is first carved by Geppetto, without Pinocchio ever lying.

The nose appears only a couple of times in the story, but it reveals the Blue Fairy's power over Pinocchio when he acts disobediently. After the boy's struggling and weeping over his deformed nose, the Blue Fairy summons woodpeckers to peck it back to normal.

Literary analysis

Some literary analysts have described Pinocchio as an epic hero. Like many Western literary heroes, such as Odysseus, Pinocchio descends into hell; he also experiences rebirth through metamorphosis, a common motif in fantasy literature.[8]

Before writing Pinocchio, Collodi wrote a number of didactic children's stories for the then-recently unified Italy, including a series about an unruly boy who undergoes humiliating experiences while traveling the country, titled Viaggio per l'Italia di Giannettino ('Little Johnny's voyage through Italy').[9] Throughout Pinocchio, Collodi chastises Pinocchio for his lack of moral fiber and his persistent rejection of responsibility and desire for fun.

The structure of the story of Pinocchio follows that of the folktales of peasants who venture out into the world but are naïvely unprepared for what they find, and get into ridiculous situations.[10] At the time of the writing of the book, this was a serious problem, arising partly from the industrialization of Italy, which led to a growing need for reliable labour in the cities; the problem was exacerbated by similar, more or less simultaneous, demands for labour in the industrialization of other countries. One major effect was the emigration of much of the Italian peasantry to cities and to foreign countries such as the United States.

The main imperatives demanded of Pinocchio are to work, be good, and study. And in the end Pinocchio's willingness to provide for his father and devote himself to these things transforms him into a real boy with modern comforts.[8]

Media portrayals



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Early films

Disney version

Pinocchio as seen in Walt Disney's Pinocchio
First appearancePinocchio (1940)
Last appearanceWeirdmageddon 2: Escape from Reality (2015)
Created byCarlo Collodi
Walt Disney
Voiced by

Main article: Pinocchio (1940 film)

When Walt Disney Productions was developing the story for their film version of Pinocchio (1940), they intended to keep the obnoxious aspects of the original character, but Walt Disney himself felt that this made the character too unlikable, so alterations were made to incorporate traits of mischief and innocence to make Pinocchio more likable. Pinocchio was voiced by Dickie Jones. Today, the film is considered one of the finest Disney features ever made, and one of the greatest animated films of all time, with a rare 100% rating on the website Rotten Tomatoes. In the video game adaptation of the film, Pinocchio lives out (mostly) the same role as the film, traveling through the world filled with temptations and battling various forces.

This Disney incarnation was later used in Who Framed Roger Rabbit, voiced by Peter Westy; and Disney's House of Mouse, voiced by Michael Welch; as well as making cameo appearances in Aladdin, Teacher's Pet, Tangled, the Mickey Mouse television series, and Ralph Breaks the Internet.[34]

Pinocchio is a supporting character, voiced by Seth Adkins, in the Kingdom Hearts video game series. He plays a major role in the eponymous first game, Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, and Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance, while in Kingdom Hearts II he appears during a flashback at the early stages.

In Kinect Disneyland Adventures, he appears as a meet-and-greet character in Fantasyland and has several quests for the player. In Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion Pinocchio is featured as one of the many iconic Disney characters kidnapped by the evil witch Mizrabel in her plot to dominate their world; he is imprisoned alongside Genie in the Cave of Wonders until eventually being rescued by Mickey Mouse.

In the early 1990s, it is rumored that Elijah Wood portrayed the real-boy version of Pinocchio in the live-action segments for the updated Jiminy Cricket educational serials I'm No Fool and You, in addition to the new shorts of I'm No Fool.

In March 2021, it was announced that Benjamin Evan Ainsworth will play him in Disney's upcoming live-action/CGI remake of the animated film.[33]

20th century

Totò portrayed Pinocchio in Toto in Color
Totò portrayed Pinocchio in Toto in Color
Pinocchio as portrayed in Giuliano Cenci's film The Adventures of Pinocchio (1972)
Pinocchio as portrayed in Giuliano Cenci's film The Adventures of Pinocchio (1972)

21st century


Stage production

In popular culture

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"A probable death of Pinocchio" (Una probabile morte di Pinocchio), Walther Jervolino, oil on canvas.
"A probable death of Pinocchio" (Una probabile morte di Pinocchio), Walther Jervolino, oil on canvas.

See also


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  2. ^ Joy Lo Dico (2 May 2009). "Classics corner: Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi". Culture. The Guardian. London. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
  3. ^ a b Martin, Clancy (6 February 2015). "What the Original 'Pinocchio' Really Says About Lying". The New Yorker. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
  4. ^ Reardon, Sara (7 June 2013). "Carlo Collodi's Pinocchio: Why is the original Pinocchio subjected to such sadistic treatment?". Slate. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  5. ^ "Pinocchio: Carlo Collodi - Children's Literature Review". Retrieved 1 October 2015.
  6. ^ Linda Falcone (2007). Italian, It's All Greek to Me: Everything You Don't Know About Italian ... ISBN 9781571431714. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  7. ^ Rich, Nathaniel (24 October 2011). "Carlo Collodi's Pinocchio: Why is the original Pinocchio subjected to such sadistic treatment?". Retrieved 1 October 2015.
  8. ^ a b Morrissey, Thomas J., and Richard Wunderlich. "Death and Rebirth in Pinocchio." Children's Literature 11 (1983): 64–75.
  9. ^ Gaetana Marrone; Paolo Puppa (26 December 2006). Encyclopedia of Italian Literary Studies. Routledge. pp. 485–. ISBN 978-1-135-45530-9.
  10. ^ Collodi, Carlo (1996). "Introduction". In Zipes, Jack (ed.). Pinocchio. Penguin Books. pp. xiii–xv.
  11. ^ Mongiardini-Rembadi, Gemma (2018). Pinocchio Under the Sea. Franklin Classics. ISBN 9780343275921.
  12. ^ Cherubini, Eugenio (2017). Pinocchio in Africa. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. ISBN 9781548612368.
  13. ^ Lorenzini, Paolo (2016). Heart of Pinocchio. Harper & Brothers. ISBN 9781535355087.
  14. ^ Patri, Angelo (1928). Pinocchio in America. DoubleDay.
  15. ^ Della Chiesa, Carol (1932). Puppet Parade. Longmans, Green and Co.
  16. ^ Tolstoy, Aleksey Nikolayevich (1990). The little gold key, or, The adventures of Burattino. Raduga. ISBN 5050028434.
  17. ^ Wunderlich, Richard (2002). Pinocchio Goes Postmodern. Taylor & Francis Group. p. 158. ISBN 0815338961.
  18. ^ Schodt, Frederik L. "Introduction." Astro Boy Volume 1 (Comic by Osamu Tezuka). Dark Horse Comics and Studio Proteus. Page 3 of 3 (The introduction section has 3 pages). ISBN 1-56971-676-5.
  19. ^ Coover, Robert (1997). Pinocchio in Venice. Grove Press. ISBN 0802134858.
  20. ^ Avengers fairy tales. New York, NY: Marvel Publishing. 2008. ISBN 978-0-7851-2433-7. OCLC 436408643.
  21. ^ Carter, Scott William (2013). Wooden bones. New York. ISBN 978-1-4424-2753-2. OCLC 891947647.
  22. ^ London, Thomas J. (2015). Splintered. Matthew Foltz-Gray. ISBN 978-1-5151-2356-9. OCLC 989885692.
  23. ^ Bemis, John Claude (2016). The wooden prince. Ralph Lister, Hoopla digital. [United States]: Disney Book Group. ISBN 978-1-4847-0737-1. OCLC 948111706.
  24. ^ Bemis, John Claude (2018). Lord of Monsters. DISNEY PR. ISBN 1-4847-0793-1. OCLC 1001274458.
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  26. ^ "Hudson Hornet". Behind The Voice Actors. Retrieved 9 September 2020.
  27. ^ "Pinocchio's Daring Journey". Behind The Voice Actors. Retrieved 22 February 2021.
  28. ^ "Who Framed Roger Rabbit". Behind The Voice Actors. Retrieved 22 February 2021.
  29. ^ "Kingdom Hearts". Behind The Voice Actors. Retrieved 22 February 2021.
  30. ^ "Kinect: Disneyland Adventures". Behind The Voice Actors. Retrieved 22 February 2021.
  31. ^ "Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance". Behind The Voice Actors. Retrieved 22 February 2021.
  32. ^ "Mickey Mouse (2013)". Behind The Voice Actors. Retrieved 22 February 2021.
  33. ^ a b D'Alessandro, Anthony (3 March 2021). "'Pinocchio': Robert Zemeckis Movie Adds Cynthia Erivo As Blue Fairy; Joseph Gordon-Levitt As Jiminy Cricket". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 3 March 2021.
  34. ^ "Video Interview with TANGLED Directors Nathan Greno and Byron Howard". Collider. 21 November 2010. Retrieved 2 March 2015.
  35. ^ "Canadian animation recommended—for Canadians". Baltimore Sun, 28 January 1983.
  36. ^ Ten of the Most Translated Books Across the Globe Archived 29 April 2020 at the Wayback Machine on Ten of the Most Translated Books Across the Globe: "A look at 10 of the most translated books of all time, including The Holy Bible and several fiction books." (29 April 2020)
  37. ^ Trumbore, Dave (6 November 2018). "Netflix Sets Guillermo del Toro's 'Pinocchio' and Henry Selick's 'Wendell & Wild' for 2021". Collider. Retrieved 6 November 2018.
  38. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (19 August 2020). "Cate Blanchett, Ewan McGregor, Tilda Swinton & More Round Out Cast For Guillermo del Toro Netflix 'Pinocchio' Movie". Deadline. Retrieved 21 August 2020.
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  40. ^ "Andy Ivine: Bio, Chapter 1". 14 October 2012. Archived from the original on 23 September 2015. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
  41. ^ "Pinocchio's Luxury Villa For Sale In Tuscany". Lionard. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
  42. ^ West, Rebecca (2002). "The Persistent Puppet: Pinocchio's Heirs in Contemporary Fiction and Film". University of Chicago. Retrieved 6 July 2016.
  43. ^ McMillan, Graeme (22 October 2014). "What's Revealed in the Leaked 'Avengers: Age of Ultron' Trailer?". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 6 July 2016.
  44. ^ "Pinokkio Sprookjesbos - Efteling". (in Dutch). Retrieved 2 September 2020.
  45. ^ Pinocchio Efteling Version
  46. ^ "Emoji List, v11.0". Retrieved 24 October 2018.