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The Annotated Brothers Grimm

4.45  ·  Rating Details ·  2,849 Ratings  ·  113 Reviews
Maria Tatar's The Annotated Brothers Grimm celebrates the powerful cultural legacy of the stories collected by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm —tales that have enchanted children and adults alike for generations. The volume includes over forty of the Grimms' most beloved stories, including:

Rapunzel * Hansel and Gretel * The Brave Little Tailor * Cinderella * Little Red Riding Hood
Paperback, 512 pages
Published 2004 by W.W. Norton & Co.
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Jan 18, 2009 Neil rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
JACOB and Wilhelm Grimm did not set out to entertain children, not at first. They were primarily collectors and philologists, who almost two centuries ago assembled German fairy tales as part of a life's work that included, Maria Tatar points out, ''massive volumes with such titles as 'German Legends,' 'German Grammar,' 'Ancient German Law' and 'German Heroic Legends.' '' (''Jacob Grimm's 'German Grammar' alone,'' we are told helpfully, ''took up 3,854 pages.'') They published their first collec ...more
Dec 28, 2010 Iyah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I own a copy of this book and boy is it expensive. I think it is the most pricey book I've ever bought so far. But I'm telling you it is worth it. You will like this book. Especially if you are into fairy tales just like me.

Okay, so remember when you were a kid, remember all those fairy tale stuffs you've been told about? Tell you something-they aren't the real story. The Fairy tale books printed for kids and the Fairy tale movies filmed by Disney were all edited to fit the imagination of young
ℇmm ♥
Mar 02, 2016 ℇmm ♥ rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: lit. scholars, fairytale enthusiasts, humans, demigods, sub-human monstrosities
Every single Grimm fairytale ever in one wrist-snappingly gigantic book. Uncut with all the original gruesomeness and mayhem intact.

Despite the fact of it being a consistently challenged collection, it's amazing how ingrained the Grimms' fairytales have become in culture. Not just in Europe. Their influence stretches to all of the continents to some degree. Especially so because of re-tellings and different adaptations throughout the years.
If you are only familiar with the Disneyfied versions,
Aug 15, 2008 Audrey rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, folktales
I should make it clear at the outset that I like the stories themselves. My problem is with the annotations. The annotations dealing with the social realities of the culture and the many variants of the more well-known stories are interesting, but disappointingly rare. Rather, most of the notes range from useless and unperceptive to just plain annoying. For example, part of a note on "Hansel and Gretel" helpfully informs us that:

"The 'perfect happiness' of the ending is brought about in part by
Aug 12, 2014 Kaion rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: myth-folk, reviewed
What to say about the Brothers Grimm? They were there, they were kind of awesome. In fact, one of the surprises about this volume for me was the biographical portion. It was interesting to learn that Jacob and Wilhelm considered themselves scholars foremost, and their passion for folklore was part of their passion for German culture (particularly pre-Industrial culture), language (they died in the "F"s for their German dictionary, which isn't surprising when you consider the Germans have a word ...more
Sep 10, 2015 Eyehavenofilter rated it it was amazing
Shelves: artworthy
This is a lovely celebration and artistic continuation of amazing cultural phenomenon known as the " Brothers Grimm". Their tales have enchanted, enraptured and terrified children and adults alike for generations. This volume includes over forty of their well known tales including Rapunzel, Hansel and Gretel, Little Red Riding Hood, Briar Rose, Rumplestiltskin, and The Golden Goose.
With over 150 paintings drawings and sketches, it brings to life some of the hidden scenes that we all know and lo
Stefan Yates
I have always been a huge fan of fantasy, fairy tales and folklore and this collection of tales certainly did not disappoint. I'm sure that part of my love for the Grimm's tales in particular comes from being raised by my German mother and interacting with her family in Germany. We always had several fairy tale books as children and my mother also incorporated scenes from fairy tales into several pieces of her artwork.

What made this book especially interesting to me was the analysis provided in
Dec 31, 2012 Terry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you’re into fairy tales, this is the book for you! Surprisingly, this was not easy reading. I thought I could do a tale or two a night, but I found them pretty darn heavy and downright disturbing at times – and to think these were for children – and although simply written, this took me a year to get through! But, from a historical perspective, it was worth it. I would have rated this a 5 if I found the annotations more useful. I really enjoyed the “annotated” Dickens, and thought this would ...more
The Potato Who Became A French Fry (Pepe De French Fry) (Kaylee White)
To be honest I haven't read all of it but I read it last year and I am re-reading this is probably my favorite versions of fairy tales because, c'mon Disney, nobody is happy :) I love the gore and the realism and just everything about it is amazing!
Remy D
Jun 15, 2010 Remy D rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 3rd-term-reading
The Annotated Brothers Grimm is a collection or fairy tales and fictional stories. Some of these include classic fables like Hansell and Gretel and Rapunzel. This book also doesn't just tell the story or fairy tale, it explains the origin of the story, where the story started and much more information. the book is written in such a way that before the story starts you are informed with all the information you need, then you read the story and can really understand it.
After soldiering through the preface, the introduction, the essay on the stories’ origins and cultural effects, and the first 19 tales, I skipped ahead to the biographical essay, the Grimms’ original prefaces, and the collected quotes on fairy tales; then I went back and read two more of the more iconic tales, carried it around in my messenger bag for another week or so, and tapped out, returning it to the library. I knew that it would take me a while to read the entire collection, but it was no ...more
Feb 04, 2013 charlotte rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Once upon a time, I read selections of The Hard Facts of the Grimms' Fairy Tales by Maria Tatar for a folklore course. Back then, I was impressed by her scholarship, weaving a close reading of the stories with a sociologist's approach to Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm and the environment in which they collected, edited, and published the famous fairy tales.

The same scholarship backs up The Annotated Brothers Grimm, but Tatar's text here -- limited as it must be to margin notes, introduction, and afterw
Jan 10, 2013 Kate rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fairy-tale
These tales come from the third edition of Household Tales by the Brothers Grimm, in which the brothers Grimm strived to remove content they deemed inappropriate for children (any and all allusions to premarital sexual relations for example, and the turning of mothers into step-mothers to preserve the sanctity of motherhood; descriptions of the gruesome punishments faced by the stories' antagonists are left pretty much intact, questionably) whilst setting a good example by making their protagoni ...more
R.W. Kennedy
Even if one doesn’t enjoy The Lord of the Rings movies, one must admit that a great deal of hard work and dedication was put in by a considerable number of people. This lengthy volume may lack the number of contributors but the hard work shows here as well.

Some dude at the library was hogging the online catalog kiosk and the other two were down so I asked this old foreign library where I could find something by the Brothers Grimm. Perhaps, she was Germanic because she seemed rather pleased that
Apr 02, 2015 Meghana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: form-ii
The Annotated Brothers Grimm edited by Maria Tatar and introduced by A.S. Byatt is the collection of the original Brothers Grimm fairy tales. Their stories were gorier than how they are told today. When the stepsisters’ feet do not fit in the shoe, they cut off their toes and heels to make them fit. The Grimm Brothers were trying to show what greed can make people do. The stepsisters wanted to marry the prince so bad that they had to result to harming themselves. This is showing that humanity ca ...more
Janet Eshenroder
I grew up with "Through Fairy Halls of My Bookhouse", fairy tales from around the world, told in beautiful prose. To start in on the Brothers Grimm was at first a disappointment, as the style was very simple and straightforward. Tales were short and to the point. Almost dry. I had always heard that the original tales were not meant to be children's tales. Perhaps I expected to find those original tales, rather than the set finally published as children's stories. (I ended up learning that these ...more
May 24, 2008 YoSafBridg rated it really liked it
Shelves: own-and-read
I was watching The Brothers Grimm last night and it suddenly occurred to me that maybe the problems in my head are caused by my genetics (well that is quite obvious~but my meaning is a little less obvious~i’m referring to the geographical source of my genetics being German, French and Irish and their natural tendencies to war with one another…) I was rather impressed by the movie itself, incorporating as it did, familiar fairy tales into an entirely new story (and i must admit a whole new admira ...more
Jan 04, 2008 Ellee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The edition I read was The Annotated Brothers Grimm edited by Maria Tatar. I recall having an edition of Grimms' Fairy Tales as a kid, but I don't think I got very far with it because there weren't many pictures and the type was very tiny so all the stories could fit into a smaller volume.

As an adult with a semi-scholarly bent, I found the introduction and annotations very insightful. Each tale has a brief introductory statement to set the stage for personal contemplation. Most of the tales are
Deborah Markus
Jun 07, 2012 Deborah Markus rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is our current bedtime read. I keep forgetting that my son is having a different childhood than I had, and that he didn't spend asthmatic afternoons stuck in bed with books. So he's not as fairy-tale literate as I was at his age. Also, he's old enough to be interested in the origin story of these stories as well as the stories themselves. So we're enjoying this collection and its introduction and footnotes.

--Just finished. This is a fine selection. The most famous tales rub shoulders with m
Jul 08, 2009 Kris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fairy tale and folklore enthusiasts
Shelves: own
A very good collection of fairy tales. I have no complaints about the translation, but the annotations in this particular edition were sometimes a bit lacking. Frequently they focused more on the psychological symbolism of the tales than on the cultural context (the latter was what I was hoping for when I purchased this edition). There are some insightful historical notes, though, as well as some interesting supplemental material in the back, including a short biography of the Grimms and the ori ...more
This is required reading for anyone even remotely serious about fairy tales. Good for reading for pleasure--as an adult or to a child--and wonderful for scholarship. The main drawback is that it's not the complete tales, but the original editions of Kinder und Hausmarchen eventually accumulated so many stories that some started to seem like duplicates of each other, so this is a selective editing. What you really want that this edition has to offer is Maria Tatar's editing; the Harvard professor ...more
Hannah Kollef
Mar 17, 2012 Hannah Kollef rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have a few copies of the Brothers Grimm, and this one is definitely my favorite. I like the selection of tales–it's a good representation of the stories, instead of the usual books that only highlight the very famous tales, like Snow White. There is also a good representation of tales with active male and female protagonists, instead of the usual emphasis on the Grimm's weeping princesses. The scholarly essays included are also fascinating. I particularly enjoyed A.S. Byatt's introduction.

Julie Snow
Jan 30, 2013 Julie Snow rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My kids (ages 7 and 5) and I loved this book. We didn't read all of the fairy tales, only the well-known half. Children's stories these days are so happy and delightful compared to the non-watered down versions! My kids were shocked, perplexed, and amazed by the descriptive and sometimes scary text. They entered a world that wasn't Disney and were intrigued. The stories are just the right length and sure kept their attention even without many pictures. My daughter and son asked me every day to r ...more
Nathan Dehoff
Sep 05, 2013 Nathan Dehoff rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This isn’t a complete collection of the Grimms’ stories, but it includes the more famous ones, as well as some fairly obscure tales. There’s also a section called “Tales for Adults,” featuring, well, the grimmest of the Grimm, including stories about children dying and a Jew being tortured for no real reason. It’s interesting to note that the Grimms’ versions of classic fairy tales are now often considered inappropriate for children, when they were actually some of the first to try to tone the s ...more
Feb 06, 2013 Bap rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Two brothers aptly named collected German folk tales in the early nineteenth century. Here are the unvarnished tales many of which we only know from the sanitized Disney versions. The German tales are scary and violent. Similar tales in other countries are bawdy but not the German variant . When the allies overturned the third reich they banned these tales because of the violent cast. Thus, in Sleeping Beauty the wicked witch is given iron shoes heated in the fire and she dances to her death. Or ...more
Jan 14, 2009 Bunny rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
November 2011 - Holy fuckballs. I checked this book out from the library, read it all the way through, and did not in any way recall having read it two years ago.

Is this what going mad feels like?


Okay, with the loving of this book!

I read some fairytales I know and love, and some I've never heard of. All of them were just different enough for me to truly enjoy them, especially since I'd never read the "original" versions before. Didn't know what actually happened to Cinderella's stepsisters a
Apr 11, 2013 Hannah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who enjoy classics and fairy tales
This is a beautiful book of fairy tales. Most of the stories I had not heard of before, but there were a few well-known ones, like the Twelve Dancing Princesses (Which was called The Worn-Out Dancing Shoes).
The book contains beautiful illustrations, and the pages are glossy. I found the annotations very interesting and I like sharing the facts with my friends. These annotations are also plentiful and lengthy. They explain parts of the fairy tale that may not make sense, or they may talk about
Chuck White
Nov 09, 2015 Chuck White rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: folklore, fairytales
This book was an excellent trip down memory lane, having had the pleasure of growing up with the wonder of fairy tales. The powerful messages embedded in these stories continue to resonate in today's society. This collection contains over 40 classic tales and I was surprised how many I remembered, beyond the ones everyone does, like Cinderella, Snow White and Little Red Riding Hood. The book also has an in depth study of the origins of fairy tales and their influence. To top it off, there is a d ...more
May 08, 2015 Kaelyn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I actually was really impressed with this book. I haven't read a collection of the Grimm's fairytales like this before, and I'm glad I did. The annotations and alternate endings are interesting, and I adored the pictures pulled from all different source. Most of the stories I've heard before, though there were ones where they were new to me (the more bloodthirsty ones especially) and the whole book was a lot of fun. The author also added original prefaces of the Grimm brothers, an essay about th ...more
Mrs Bond
Mar 10, 2009 Mrs Bond rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: folklore
Fantastic resource. 37 tales, 9 additional for "adults." Bonuses: Grimms biography, illustration bibliography, additional reading suggestions, preface to 1st and 2nd editions of Grimm's tales.
According to the Preface: tales are from Grimm's 7th ed, published 1857. Selection includes tales that involve "magic" in some way. Also includes some background on the collection of tales and the revisions made over time (including those by the Grimm brothers).
Individual tales: full text accompanied by ann
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Jacob Ludwig Karl Grimm, German philologist, jurist and mythologist, was born at Hanau, in Hesse-Kassel (or Hesse-Cassel). He is best known as the discoverer of Grimm's Law, the author of the monumental German Dictionary, his Deutsche Mythologie and more popularly, with his brother Wilhelm, as one of the Brothers Grimm, as the editor of Grimm's Fairy Tales.

(From Wikipedia.)

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