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Grimms' Tales for Young and Old: The Complete Stories Paperback – August 9, 1983
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Top Customer Reviews
The best example I can give is one of the stories -- "The Boy Who Left Home to Find Out About the Shivers." Other versions translate this as "The Boy who left home to find out what fear was." Why is this wrong? Well, the story is really about the physical effects of fear -- shivering. He didn't actually leave home to find out about fear itself. The gist of the story is that the main character never understood why his brother would "get the shivers" when he heard a scary story, so (among other reasons) he leaves home to seek his fortune. No matter what scary things he encounters, he never gets the shivers. Finally, at the end, the princess he married gets fed up with his whining about the shivers, and while he's sleeping, dumps a bucket of cold water full of minnows on him. He wakes up happy, saying "I'm shivering, I'm shivering!"
To this day, I use this story as a test of any translation of the Brothers Grimm.
Manheim explains that in early translations these were incorrectly labeled fairy tales and mistakenly assumed they were stories for children only. Over and over I am shocked by the gruesome content and punishments. Punishment by entrapping someone inside a barrel lined with the nail heads and then rolling them down a hill, father cutting off his daughters hands to avoid harm to himself, etc.
The reason I began reading these was to get a purist idea of what the Grimms' tales were: having grown up on the Disney version I was curious about the real thing. I was surprised at what I found, and happy! I was hoping to retell these stories to my 3 year-old but I have yet to find one that is tame enough to retell to him, but that is okay.
The storytelling nature of this is truly captured and I am entranced by these tales. The translator explains in his preface that this was the first time that the tales were translated from German to English by one person who was reading the original Grimms' manuscripts. This was first published in 1977. Manheim explains how earlier translations by other translators were muddled and errors made which changed some words, and at worst enough of the content was erroneous that the reader was really missing out on the true flavor and intent of the story. Manheim claims his edition is the most pure English translation. I compared this with my copy of the Pantheon edition edited by James Stern, as I was reading both copies at the same time.Read more ›
Besides that, these stories retain their sinister atmospheres, their haunting terrors, their violence and charm... look again to the face of Briar Rose and Snow White and see they are not as innocent maidens as you once thought.
My favorite in this book? "The Goose Girl" in all of its gory splendour.
Take care with this tome. It isn't the Grimms you knew as a kid, but you'll love them any way.
The only problem for me is that the type is a little small and the stories are crowded together. But all of the stories are there and it's already a pretty thick book so unless You want The Oxford Dictionary Like collection of Grimms Fairy Tales, you make do.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Nice interpretation of the 1857 edition, which is quite different from the 1st Ed of 1812/1815.Published 3 months ago by Delta 1011
These are wonderful. Reminds me of my childhood and the magic of hearing the Grimm's Brothers fairy tales.Published 5 months ago by aliveoh
Wonderful. But not the disney versions. These are they way they should been read and known.Published 20 months ago by David Campellone
Not bowdlerized in the least, this full collection of Grimm tales are, well, just that, *grim.*
A warning, though to any soul not interested in soulish things, because... Read more
This book reads as I imagine the tone of the original collected stories must read. It is well written but not modernized. Read morePublished on February 16, 2014 by Joan Merlo
I've loved fairy tales since I was a small child and have amassed quite a large library. This translation is very acceptable and readable.Published on December 15, 2012 by Linda Susie
The content of the book is excellent but I'm a little disappointed in the quality of the paper which feels a bit rough and cheap like some dictionary paper.Published on November 28, 2012 by voogy