The Happy Prince is not a living Prince. He is the statue of a prince, mounted on a tall column in the center of the city. It is the statue of a dead prince with the soul of the prince in it. He is decorated with gold leaves and precious stones. There is a smile on his lips. People call him the Happy Prince because of this smile. He is a supernatural character, because he can see, hear and speak.
Standing on the top of the tall column, he can see the condition of the people of the city. He is deeply moved by the misery of the poor. When he was alive he lived a life of comfort. He neither knew nor cared for the sufferings of the poor people of his country. Now he regrets why he did not help them when he was alive. He requests the little swallow to act as his messenger. Through this messenger he gives away all his wealth. He loses his outward beauty and gains the beauty of the heart. Then the little swallow dies, and his heart breaks, but God treasures his broken heart as the most beautiful thing on earth. The Prince’s noble role teaches us that we can get real happiness, peace and love of God by helping the poor.