chapter  Chapter 4
8 Pages

The Nursery and Household Tales

1806–1812
ByRuth Michaelis-Jena

In the autumn of 1805 von Armin and Brentano had published the first volume of their collection of folksongs, Des Knaben Wunderhorn. Clemens Brentano had first kindled the brothers’ interest in fairytales. Knowing Breritano’s volatile temperament, the Grimms took the precaution of making a copy of their original manuscript. Gradually a mass of material assembled on their desks, mostly from Hesse, their immediate surroundings, and from memories of the Kinzig valley. Friends in the countryside were successfully approached, and we find their names pencilled in the Grimms’ own copy of the first edition of the Household Tales, often with the dates of the stories’ recording. At this time Jacob gave much thought to a publication, possibly a journal, which would concern itself with material collected from oral tradition. In spite of criticism, the triumphant journey of the Nursery and Household Tales through Europe and the world had begun.