Today is the birthday of Jacob Grimm, who was born in Hanau, Germany on this day in 1785. Grimm, along with his brother Wilhelm, is the author of one of the best-known works of German literature, Grimm’s Fairy Tales.
While in college at the University of Marburg, the Brothers Grimm developed an interest in German folklore and began a lifelong process of collecting and recording folk tales. The first edition of Grimm’s Fairy Tales was published in 1812 and contained 86 stories. The book was revised and expanded several times, until 1857 when the 7th edition of Grimm’s Fairy Tales was published with over 200 stories. Published in more than 100 languages, the fairy tales became known throughout the world, and even today the name Grimm remains synonymous with children’s literature (1).
Whether we were read adapted versions as bedtime stories or whether we watched filmed versions adapted by Walt Disney, the stories originally collected by the Brothers Grimm remain some of the most familiar stories of our youth:
Hansel and Gretel
Little Red Riding Hood
The Pied Piper of Hamlin
Today’s Challenge: Your Fairy Tales and Fables Final Four
What children’s stories would you enshrine in the Children’s Literature Hall of Fame? What makes them so memorable and enduring? Select four separate children’s stories from Grimm’s Fairy Tales or from other children’s literature. Write an explanation of why you would enshrine each of your chosen stories into the Children’s Literature Hall of Fame. (Common Core Writing 2 – Expository)
Quotation of the Day: If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales. –Albert Einstein
1 –Eiland’s Online English Materials. A Brief History: The Brothers Grimm. http://englit.org/eiland_shared/critical/grimm.htm.