The Brothers GrimmJacob (1785–1863) and Wilhelm (1786–1859)

The Grimm Brothers had many faces: lawyers, scholars, professors, philologists, storybook editors among them. It was in the collection of fairy tales that many of their interests combined. The Grimm brothers’ careers as book editors began with the publication of the first edition of the full Collected Works (die Groβe Ausgabe) in 1812 (which went through six more editions between 1812-1857, while the abridged edition, die Kleine Ausgabe, went through ten editions between 1825-1858). They continued their philological publications, drafting grammar books, including Jacob’s German Grammar (1819), and scholarly articles focused on language. One of the brothers’ later-life projects, while living in Berlin, was the writing of a definitive German dictionary. They only got to the letter “F” – Frucht (fruit) was their last entry. In fact, the Grimm brothers were best known in their lifetime for this philological work in particular. A historical school of thought was led by Friedrich C. von Savigny, and aimed to identify "German law". The Grimm brothers studied under Savigny and joined that school of legal thought.

What is the link between the Grimm Brothers’ collection of stories, their work on language, and law?

Divider Grimm

his exhibition proposes to explore how the Grimm Brothers depicted the legal culture of their time through storytelling and the study of language.

You will find three paths through the forest namely 'Fairy Tales as Conduit of Law', 'Nation Building' and 'Cultural Impact'. Each path focuses on a specific aspect of the exhibition (legal, social and cultural history).

Rediscover the Grimm stories you know, discover those you do not know yet.

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Divider Grimm

There are three paths through the forest, each focusing on a specific aspect of the exhibition.