Explanation of the ATU Index
The Aarne-Thompson-Uther index first classifies stories as one of seven categories: Animal Tales, Tales of Magic, Religious Tales, Realistic Tales, Tales of the Stupid Ogre, Anecdotes and Jokes, or Formula Tales. Each category contains multiple subcategories that stories are then divided into. A range of numbers applies to each subcategory. As the final step in classification, every story is assigned a designating number.
Stories can be located within the ATU index by either their number or by navigating through the corresponding categories. The names of the stories in the ATU index are descriptive and lengthy to aid in identification. However, classic, well known tales, such as "The Three LIttle Pigs", retain their familiar names to prevent confusion.