Two German brothers famously known for their versions of fairy tales, which often featured cruel and dark storylines, released the less known Kinder-und Hausmarche, the German version of Children’s and Household Tales. 

The two brothers, Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, first published the children’s stories collection on December 20, 1812. The collection would later become famously known as Grimm’s Fairy Tales. It included 86 stories in the first 1812 edition. The two brothers introduced famous fictional characters such as Cinderella, Snow White, Rapunzel, and Little Red Riding Hood. Eventually, the 11th edition would contain 211 unique children’s stories.

The brothers viewed Grimm’s as an attempt to preserve stories that would otherwise be lost in history. Their original stories were, however, not quite as magical as the present-day tales. Their stories were more detailed and contained disturbing scenery suitable for mature audiences. A good example is the original Cinderella story, where the evil stepsisters have their eyeballs pecked out by the same birds that helped Cinderella attend the ball. Luckily, over time, writers edited these horrid details out of the stories. Jacob Grimm and Wilhelm Grimm did not always publish similar stories.

The Nazis approved of the Grimms’ grim tales, often using them to uphold their racist and nationalist supremacy ideologies. Jacob and Wilhelm got inspired to write the stories after working as librarians in Kassel. Their friends played a role in encouraging them to write down stories they collected from friends and family. 

The brothers would later be commissioned to write a German dictionary, which they would not complete as they passed away soon after.