Public Domain Super Heroes


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The Coachman

Real Name


First Appearance

The Adventures of Pinocchio (1881)

Created by

Carlo Collodi


The coachman is introduced in chapter XXXI, and is described as thus:

"Picture for yourselves a little man, broader than he is tall, tender and greasy like a ball of butter, with a rosy face, a small, constantly laughing mouth and a thin, adorable voice of a cat wishing all the best to its master."

The coachman’s name is never revealed, though he identifies himself in Chapter XXXII as merely “The Little Man”). He drives to Busy Bee Island on a coach pulled by twenty four donkeys which mysteriously wear white shoes on their hooves. By the time he arrives to take Pinocchio and Candlewick to the Land of Toys, his carriage is completely packed, leaving Candlewick to sit in front with him and Pinocchio to ride one of the donkeys. The donkey throws Pinocchio off, and is reproached by the coachman, who bites half its right ear off. When Pinocchio remounts the donkey, the animal begins to weep like a human, and warns Pinocchio of the impending danger he faces. The coachman again reproaches the animal by biting off half its other ear. The coachman proceeds to take the children to the Land of Toys, whilst singing to himself:

“All night they sleep And I never sleep…”

In chapter XXXII, the coachman visits Pinocchio and Candlewick five months later, when they have themselves become donkeys due to their idleness. He violently breaks into their house, meticulously waxes their fur, and puts them on sale. Candlewick is bought by a farmer, while Pinocchio is bought by a circus ringleader.


While the original character who appeared in published works before 1923 is in public domain, the version of the character used by Disney, or any other post-1923 works are, most obviously, NOT.

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