From "The Frog King" to "The Golden Key," wondrous worlds unfold—heroes and heroines are rewarded, weaker animals triumph over the strong, and simple bumpkins prove themselves not so simple after all. Esteemed fairy tale scholar Jack Zipes offers accessible translations that retain the spare description and engaging storytelling style of the originals. Indeed, this is what makes the tales from the 1812 and 1815 editions unique—they reflect diverse voices, rooted in oral traditions, that are absent from the Grimms' later, more embellished collections of tales. Zipes's introduction gives important historical context, and the book includes the Grimms' prefaces and notes.
A delight to read, The Original Folk and Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm presents these peerless stories to a whole new generation of readers.
from "Brothers Grimm"
ONCE upon a time... in the middle of a thick forest stood a small cottage, the home of a pretty little girl known to everyone as Little Red Riding Hood.
One day, her Mummy waved her goodbye at the garden gate, saying, "Grandma is ill. Take her this basket of cakes, but be very careful. Keep to the path through the wood and don't ever stop. That way, you will come to no harm."
Little Red Riding Hood kissed her mother and ran off. "Don't worry", she said, "I'll run all the way to Grandma's without stopping".
Full of good intensions, the little girl made her way through the wood, but she was soon to forget her mother's wise words. "What lovely strawberries! And so red..."
These folktales collected by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm are among the most memorable stories in European culture - conjuring up a world of spells and bewitchment, outwitted villains and cruel stepmothers, animal bridegrooms and enchanted princesses. Tales such as 'Hansel and Gretel', 'Little Red Cape' and 'The Robber Bridegroom' depict the dangers lurking in dark forests, and others, including 'Briar-Rose' and 'Snow White' show young beauties punished by unforgiving sorceresses. Other tales include 'Thickasathumb', which portrays a childless young couple whose wish for a baby is granted in an unexpected way, while 'The Frog King' tells of a rash promise made by a haughty princess to share her bed with a frog, and a fortune is won in 'The Blue Lamp', when a soldier gains a kingdom with the help of a magic lamp.
David Luke's vibrant translation is accompanied by an introduction discussing the key themes of the tales and the literary background of the Brothers Grimm. This edition also includes new further reading and a chronology, with notes and a glossary.
Jacob (1785-1863) and Wilhelm (1786-1859) are nowadays simply known as 'the brothers Grimm'. Both brothers were state-appointed librarians in Kassel, and later members of the Academy of Arts and Sciences in Berlin, where Frederick William IV of Prussia had invited them to settle. Two of Germany's greatest scholars, Jacob is regarded as the founder of the scientific study of the German language, and with his brother Wilhelm initiated the Deutsches Wörterbuch, a dictionary of all words in modern High German since 1450.
If you enjoyed the Selected Tales of the Brothers Grimm, you might like Hans Christian Andersen's Fairy Tales, also available in Penguin Classics.