Dr. Seuss Wiki
Published: 1940
Author: Dr. Seuss
Illustrator: Dr. Seuss
Characters: Horton the Elephant
Setting: Jungle of Nool

Horton Hatches the Egg is the first book to feature two of Seuss' better-known characters, Horton the Elephant and Mayzie the Bird. It was his fifth book, published in 1940. This book sold more copies than any he had written thus far. The story focuses on the benefits of diligence and consequences of shirking work, the virtues represented by Horton and Mayzie, respectively. It was adapted into three different videos: the first in 1942 by Leon Schlesinger Productions as part of Merrie Melodies, the second a Russian adaption by Soyuzmultfilm in 1966, and the last a narrated version by the publisher Random House in 1992. Egg is also one of the main books that contribute to Seussical the Musical.

Oceanhouse Media published this book to be used as an app on Iphones, Ipod touch, Ipad and android apps.

Horton, when Mayzie fails to return

Horton was lonely. He wanted to play

but he sat on the egg and continued to say

“I meant what I said

And I said what I meant…

An elephant’s faithful

One hundred per cent!

Video Classics


This book was also used in the Random House Home Video Series, also featuring "If I Ran the Circus".


Plot Synopsis

The book centers on Horton, a genial elephant, who is convinced by Mayzie, a lazy, irresponsible bird, to sit on her egg while she takes a short "break", which turns into her permanent relocation to Palm Beach.

Naturally, the absurd sight of an elephant sitting atop a tree makes quite a scene – Horton is exposed to the elements, laughed at by his jungle friends, captured by hunters, forced to endure a terrible sea voyage, and finally placed in a traveling circus. However, despite his hardships and Mayzie's clear intent not to return, Horton refuses to leave the nest because he insists on keeping his word, often repeating, "I meant what I said, and I said what I meant. An elephant's faithful, one hundred per cent!"

The traveling circus ends up visiting near Mayzie's new Palm Beach residence; she visits the circus just as the egg is due to hatch and demands that Horton return it, without offering him a reward. However, when the egg hatches, the creature that emerges is an "elephant-bird", a cross between Horton and Mayzie, and Horton and the baby are returned happily to the jungle, rewarding Horton for his persistence, while Mayzie is punished for her laziness by ending up with nothing.


Add reception info and controversy here.


Goofs, Errors, Corrections, and Differences

  • This is a review of the Goofs, Errors, Corrections, and Differences between the video and the book.
  • As the video of this book begins, you will see Horton from the cover of the book sitting in the tree. The background scenery has been painted blue and you will see the sun rising, you will notice that the rest of the black has been painted and drawn. The sun disappears and the logos from the book "Horton Hatches the Egg" and "Dr. Seuss" show up.
  • As page 1 starts you will notice that the bushes in the background are now green instead of white. Mayzie's belly gets bigger as she sighs for a brief moment. then her wings move back and fourth and her head then tilts down, most of the sky has been added to replace the big cloud that was in the book.
  • Horton was taken from page 5 and was put into page 1 as the narrator reads pages 2-3. As soon as Horton from page 5 comes (but is looking straight ahead) the head of Mayzie from page 2 replaces Mayzie's head from page 1 as she turns around seeing walk by. The scene is still into page 1 at this time. Then the scene finally goes to page 2 of the video of this book
  • On page 2 on the video of this book as Mayzie is sitting on her nest, notice the two branches of her tree are brought in closer and the leaves of the branches are lowered and Mayzie is sitting on the top of her egg, but in the book she was sitting on the side and the leaves of the branches were higher. More bushes were added and painted green and more of the sky was painted in the scenery as the camera zoom's out. Then Mayzie stands up taking her bottom off her egg then sits back down again and then wiggles her feathers telling Horton to come. Then Mayzie is taken from page 40 and put into page 2 as she flies to him and begs him to take the offer. As Mayzie from page 40 was put into the scene of page 2 in the video the Mayzie that was sitting on her egg has been removed. The she flies away. More then likely some of the trees and branches are going to be the color green instead of white in most of the pages of the video of the book.
  • On page 5 of the video of the book as Horton is seen looking to Mayzie to his right he then looks at the egg. Instead of Mayzie flying off her egg on page 5 of the book, she did it early in page 3 in the video. She flies in from her right then flies off without going near her nest again.
  • On page 7 on the video of this book you can see that most of the clouds in the sky have been erased and more of the sky is seen over it. Horton is moving his head and trunk up and down as he tries to prop up the tree then looks to the his left.
  • On page 9 on the video of this book, the tree rocks back and fourth as Horton climbs on it.
  • On page 11 of the video of this book the tree still rocks as he sits on the nest. Notice that the white cloud is more shifted to the right and not on the left as more of the scenery has been added to the page a bit.
  • The narrator reads the words on page 12 in the book as the scene is still on page 11 when the scene then turns dark blue a bit then, on page 13 of the video of this book, the editors use their own rain drops in this scenery as Horton isn't enjoying the outside weather. The two red thunderbolts appear flashing in and out for brief moments.
  • On page 15 of the video of the book, you will see Mayzie resting on a beach tree enjoying her vacation. You will notice that the sun has been brought in closer in the screen zoomed in to where Mayzie was resting, but in the book the sun was far away. The boat also comes in and the ocean was all blue instead of blue and white.
  • On page 15 of the video of the book, you will see Mayzie resting on a beach tree enjoying her vacation. You will notice that the sun has been brought in closer in the screen zoomed in to where Mayzie was resting, but in the book the sun was far away. The boat also comes in and the ocean was all blue instead of blue and white.
  • On page 17 of the video of this book, the editors had to edit Horton and redraw him to wear he wasn't sick and covered in snow as if he was feeling normal and the tree beside him had some leaves on it and the the green bushes were drawn behind him. As autumn then came the bushes and the leaves faded away and you can seem the drawn green grass. As soon as winter came, the grass is covered in snow and some snow was on Horton, then icicles appeared and hung from his feet, tree, ears, and his trunk and his eyes were red as he was feeling sick and he is covered in a lot of snow like he was in the book. The dead tree and the grass also was now covered in snow and the background is just as it was in the book and the editors added snow flakes to fall in the scenery.
  • On page 18-19 on the video of the book, most of the big cloud in the sky in the book has been erased or painted over and replaced with more of the sky. The happy lion appears but is a tad bit too close to the hippopotamus or elephant. The grass and the bushes are painted green from white. A mother kangaroo is seen without her baby kangaroo then appears in her pouch. It's unknown if this is the same kangaroo named Jane from Horton's other story "Horton Hears a Who!" More animals appear in the scenery to see Horton the same amount of animals as it was in the book.
  • On page 20-21 on the video of the book most of the animals are scattered out of their places as they all run away laughing at Horton. The grass bushes and trees were green. The left cloud by Horton was pushed a bit to the left. Some of the green grass by Horton has been raised up higher in the video.
  • On page 22-23 on the video of this book, the hunters appear but they aren't standing in the spots they were standing like it was in the book and Horton's ears are lowered at the time then, his ears rise as he hears the hunters coming for him.
  • On page 24 on the video of the book, a piece of Horton's ear is missing and filled in wrong instead, The hunters from page 27 appear first when the narrator said "Three rifles were aiming right straight at his heart!" Then the scene goes back to 24 as the 3 rifles from this page are aimed at Horton but notice that the more background was added, painted, and drawn into the scenery, the rifles are up to the left a bit instead of down at the very bottom. One cloud is missing and covered in blue by the tree that has been painted green beside Horton.
  • On page 27 on the video of this book, the hunters are brought in a little bit more closer, more bushes is added into the scene and a odd cloud is added and painted into this scenery, the grass and the bushes are green, and the top of Horton's ears are draw due to being cut on the page. The bush on the right bottom has been lifted up a bit and the big cloud behind Horton has been lifted a bit as well. Horton's eyes open and close in between times.
  • As you then see the hunters on page 27, the bushes behind them are gone, then the scene moves over to page 28-29 on the video of this book as the hunters drop there guns. The big white cloud from the book is gone from behind the hunters in the video and new clouds are drawn in the scene and you will see more of the sky instead. At this time you will still see Horton and the tree from page 27. Then Horton is switched to where he looks down overhears there words of the hunters taking him away from his home sell him to a circus then his eyes phase bigger a few inches wide when he hears them talking about selling him for money. Due to Horton's top ear and back being cut from the page in the book, the editors drew and filled that in for the video of this book.
  • On page 30-31 on the video of this book, notice that the editors erased Horton from the scenery where the hunters are seen with a wagon. more if the bushes are seen through the wagon and Horton isn't anywhere in sight at the time. The bushes and the grass are now painted green and the big cloud that was in the book has been taken away and the editors drew new clouds and painted more of the sky for the video. The rabbit appears as he or she looks at Horton (who also appears in the wagon) and his nest being taken away by the hunters. Horton's eye lids close a bit as he felt sad being taken away from his home. The Wagon built by cut branches of tree and rope is now moving in action going to the left.
  • On page 32-33 on the video of the book, you will see a unhappy but shocked Horton in the wagon the first hunter pushing the wagon and two others pulling it up and over the mountain then they go down on the other side of the mountain. Most of the scenery to the left and right has been added into the video. Notice the sailboat at the bottom of the scenery has been moved near the 3rd mountain. Most likely the sailboat at the bottom is where they are taking Horton to.
  • On page 34-35 on the video of this book, you will see the ship rocking from back and forth and the water phases in and out and goes left and right then the fish that was in the book glances at the elephant on the ship briefly and splashes back into the ocean in the video, more of the sky is seen as some of the big cloud has been erased from the bottom.
  • On page 36-37 on the video of this book, Horton on a wooden board of is swinging back and forth on a rope of the ship. The dock has been painted from white to brown. Then Horton is lowered down 3 times then BUMP on the dock. 
  • On page 38-39 on the video of the book, the customer holding a quarter puts his quarter on the booth giving it to the ticket salesman the editors had he hand phasing down, Notice that the names of the states appear on the circus curtain and as the Narrator calls out the states as the words change to what state he calls out, the saleman's clothes and the curtain changes colors. A tear falls from Horton's eye cause he was sad, embarrassed humiliated by the people in the audience and homesick. but yet he still stays bound by his word on not leaving the tree but he still wanted to go home.
  • On page 40-41 on the video of this book, the editors switch Mayzie from page 5 and 40 as she continuously flies left and right. You will see that the big cloud in the background has lost some pieces as the sky covers most of it. The grass is green and the sand is tan in the circus area. More of the green grass is painted onto the scene straight across which explains why some of the big cloud as been painted over. You will then see Mayzie swoop down into a circus tent.
  • On page 43 on the video of the book, Mayzie is seen only in front of the upper curtains  and not below like she was in the book. She then flies near Horton.
  • On page 45 on the video of this book, the whitening has been painted over with blue. Most of Horton's ear flap has been drawn in due to being cut on the book. The editors forgot to add on the branches of the tree that was cut from this page in the book and the two prop steak sticks that fell off in the book are gone in the video. Notice that in the video on this scene, the egg is right side up and it hops up moving left and right repeatedly in the nest but, in the book its upside down and bouncing up and down instead and out the nest.
  • On page 46-47 on the video of this book, Mayzie appears in mid air then, she lands on the leaves of the tree as she scolds Horton while moving her arms pointing at him, Horton is near the nest at the time before he back's down. Horton then backs down off the nest feeling sad and heartbroken but he isn't in the correct spot on the tree as he backs down. The background is blue in the scenery.
  • On page 48-49 on the video of this book, the egg has a crack in it and jumps and hatches, then the top egg shell and few egg pieces fall off and Mayzie looks in shock. Morton the elephant-bird doesn't appear just yet instead he flies past Horton from left to right as Horton sees him then Morton flies near him. The background is all blue in the scenery as well.
  • On page 50-51 on the video of the book, the curtains of the tent are painted red and the ground was painted tan. Only two customers are visible as the discover a new breed of a strange animal, then two people come in the scene but one of them looks at Mayzie who is angry and jealous at Horton at the time. A lot more people are phased in coming to see about the new discovery. Notice that Mayzie is a few more paces closer to the man looking at him.
  • On page 52, on the video of the book Horton is sent back to the jungle of Nool, and he is happy that they brought him back home with his new son name Morton. Horton phases from one place to another from  the circus people's truck as he goes back home to see his friends who congratulate him. Notice that the grass is now painted green from white.
  • As the video ends, you will see Horton from page 2 in a portrait, and Morton from page 50-51 flies in and lands on Horton's trunk. Then Horton closes his eyes feeling. This scene is not in the book but it was a add-on to the video.


Video Book Gallery

Related Articles