The collected works of the Brothers Grimm have been the cornerstone of children’s fairytales for more than two hundred years and many of us grew up with Hansel and Gretal, Rapunzel and Cinderella. Grimms’ Fairy Tales are so engrained as part of our popular culture today that it is hard to imagine a childhood without dark stories of witches, fairies, elves and more.
While the Disney adaptations and contemporary books have largely sanitized what we know of the stories, there are some terrifyingly dark plots in the first edition. The works are essentially a collection of Germanic folk stories that the brothers painstakingly collated over many years. Not intended initially for children, upon its release in 1812 the book sold poorly. Collections were issued with differing versions of the stories over the following years, with later collections completely omitting some stories altogether.
The collection has rarely been out of print during the last two hundred years and as such there are a huge number of editions available. Good quality first editions from 1909 published by Constable include copper plates by Arthur Rackham, have realized upwards of $5,000. The various versions since the early 1800s chart the ongoing development of the work, and with the addition of some stunning artwork, Grimms’ Fairy Tales can be an intriguing purchase.
Grimm, Brothers. Grimm's Fairy Tales . Constable & Co., London (1909). With 40 colour and numerous black and white illustrations by Arthur Rackham bound in with the text; 750 copies
Grimm, Brothers. The Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm. Constable & Co, London (1909). Translated by Mrs. Edgar Lucas; 40 tipped-in colour plates (including frontis.) & numerous text illustratoins by Authur Rackham; 750 copies.
Grimm, Brothers. Grimm's Fairy Tales . Adam & Charles Black, London (1911). Introduction by John Ruskin; 12 colour plates including frontis by Charles Folkard.
Grimm, Brothers. LITTLE BROTHER AND LITTLE SISTER. Constable & Co Ltd, London (1917). Illustrated with a frontispiece and 11 tipped-in colored plates, along with original drawings throughout, by Arthur Rackham; 525 copies.
Grimm, Brothers. Grimm's FAIRY TALES . Humphrey Milford & Oxford University Press (1920). 23 tipped in colour plates by Noel Pocock.
Grimm, Brothers. Hansel and Grethel, and Other Tales. E. P. Dutton & Co., New York (1920). With 20 tipped-in colour plates and numerous black and white illustrations by Arthur Rackham
Grimm, Brothers . Snowdrop & Other Tales . Constable & Company Ltd., London (1920). Illustrated by Arthur Rackham
Grimm, Brothers . Hansel and Grethel and Other Tales . Doubleday Page & Company, New York (1923). 20 tipped-in color plates and 28 b&w illustrations
Grimm, Brothers . Snowdrop and Other Tales . Doubleday, Page & Company, Garden City (1923). 20 full-page tipped-in color plates, 29 b/w illustrations in the text, by Arthur Rackham
Grimm, Brothers . Hansel and Gretel and Other Stories. George H. Doran, New York (1925). with 12 tipped-in color plates & numerous black & white drawings by Kay Nielsen; 600 copies.
Grimm, Brothers . Fairy Tales. Offenbach, Germany (1931). designed by Rudolf Koch, and the hand-colored illustrations in wood have been made by Fritz Kredel; 1500 copies.
Grimm, Brothers . Tales From Grimm. Coward-Mccann, New York (1936). Translated and Illustrated by Wanda Gag
Grimm, Brothers . Snow-White and the Seven Dwarfs. . Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, New York (1972). translated by Randall Jarrell; Illustrated By Nancy Burkert
Grimm, Brothers. King Grisly-Beard . Farrar Straus & Giroux, New York (1973). Translated by Edgar Taylor; Pictures by Maurice Sendak
Grimm, Brothers. The Juniper Tree and Other Tales from Grimm. Farrar, Straus & Giroux, New York (1973). Translated by Lore Segal and Randall Jarrell. Illustrated by Maurice Sendak; 2 volumes
Grimm, Brothers. Faithful John . The Old Stile Press, Great Britain (1998). Translated by Lucy Crane; 26 lettered copies; The frontispiece and fifteen wood engravings, as well as all images on the book, are by Harry Brockway and the wood engravings were printed from the wood.