The tales of the Brothers Grimm are known to all thanks to the important influence they have had on children’s literature and the popularity of many of their tales, fables and stories that we have all heard at some point.
There are many short and lesser-known Grimm tales, most of which take as their starting point the tales they collected over many years from traditional German and French legends. However, the stories that we know about these two authors are the most famous Grimm brothers tales, here you have the most famous stories of the brothers grimm to read , you can see each one, in its text version, audio story and interactive book .
The stories of the Brothers Grimm to read in Primary World
Hansel and Gretel
One of the best-known stories with the greatest impact in contemporary society, due to the numerous versions, cartoons, movies, plays and other representations that we have seen of the play that narrates the adventures of the brothers Hansel and Gretel .
Who has not wanted to take a piece of chocolate home? These two brothers are abandoned in the forest (in the lighter versions, the kid get lost) and after spending several days lost in the thick of the valley, they find a house made of gingerbread, cookies and chocolate…
Everyone knows the story of Cinderella, perhaps due to the influence of Disney adaptations in recent generations, it is undoubtedly one of the most famous brothers grimm fairy tales today.
There are two known versions, one written by the Grimm brothers and the other by Charles Perrault, although the story in essence is little altered, the versions modify some terms and scenarios, depending on the time and the narrator, it is one of the stories that most variations has.
Will you lose your glass slipper? It may be one of the best-known royal dances in history. Cinderella, despite the prohibition of her stepmother and sisters, who have her forced into servitude; She goes to the prince’s ball to which she has mysteriously been invited. All thanks to the magic of a fairy who helps her with one condition, to return home before midnight…
You can find out if Cinderella meets the fairy by reading the rest of the story here: Tale of Cinderella or if you prefer, listen to the story in this video:
Red Riding Hood
This story is one of the legends for kid of medieval origin that has spread the most in Europe, since we find versions of this traditional story in France, Germany and other places, all the stories have in common the presence of a town as a symbol of security and a forest that represents danger, also in all the stories the protagonist is a girl who wears some element in her red clothing.
Where are you going Little Hood? Yes, in the story the wolf speaks, that’s what the bad guy is for. Little Red Riding Hood has to cross the entire forest to bring a basket with honey and bread to her grandmother, who is sick and cannot get out of bed. Since she leaves the house, the wolf is chasing her, hidden in the dark, and when Little Red Riding Hood goes deep into the forest, she comes to a clearing where there are two paths.
This is when the wolf appears, challenging Little Red Riding Hood to race to the other side of the forest, where Grandma lives… who will get there first?
If you want to read the complete story of the Brothers Grimm, you can do it here: Tale of Little Red Riding Hood or listen to it in its entirety in this video:
The Leaping Dwarf (Rumpelstiltskin)
The story of “The jumping dwarf” is the name given to the Spanish publication of this work, since the original story is called “Rumpelstiltskin” and the publishers thought it was an unpronounceable name for Spanish speakers.
This tale by the Brothers Grimm has all the typical clichés of traditional German folk tales: an impossible task for a protagonist who is sorry for his condition, a secret name and a creature from fairy tales .
Here is the video of the Rumpelstiltskin tale:
The story of Snow White by the Brothers Grimm is one of the best known in the world. The version we all know has a magic mirror, seven dwarfs and the young, sweet and innocent Snow White. In some publications, instead of the mirror, it is the Sun or the Moon who has the role of conversing with Snow White’s mother or stepmother.
This is one of the stories that has more adaptations and versions, from the hundred to new books with changes in the characters, even plays and television series. It is one of the German legends that has had the most impact among the Grimm tales. THE TURTLE AND THE FLUTE SHORT STORIES FOR KIDS.
If you want you can remember the complete story of Snow White with this video:
Another of the fairy tales that the Grimm brothers took from oral tradition. This story has been covered by many authors, including Perrault and the Brothers Grimm, both with different plots and elements.
Today the story that we give as good is more similar to Perrault’s version, but it has many elements incorporated from the story that the Grimm did.
In this video you can remember the full story:
The brave little tailor
Another of the classics of the Grimm brothers that we can find in the compilation of “Stories of childhood and home”
The story tells of the adventures of a little tailor who, after killing seven flies in one fell swoop, decides to proudly go out and travel the world and recount his feat. The little tailor proudly wears his belt embroidered with the phrase “seven at a stroke” and is determined that humanity know his feat, until he meets a giant…
You can see how the story ends here:
There are two stories of Tom Thumb, the first tells of the humble origins of this character, who is born smaller than a thumb in a peasant family.
In this story we see the agility and cunning of the character who, in different scenes, puts his ingenuity to escape and be able to return home.
The second story, called “The Travels of Tom Thumb” the little one is the only son of a tailor, is also characterized by his small size and his courage, as he decides to go around the world in search of amassing fortune.
Along the way, the protagonist will go through various adventures and perform various trades, from apprentice craftsman to thief.
The different scenes have been devised retouching, modifying or even eliminating over the years, there is also a very similar version of Perrault, today each person manages some feats and not others due to the mix that has occurred between the different versions of this story.
The wolf and the seven kids
One of the lesser-known classics, but whose story you surely know, the mother who has to leave home and warns her children of external dangers. It’s a classic plot of many fairy tales, and in this case, the Brothers Grimm represent it with animals in a short story.
The wolf manages to deceive all the kids except one, the smallest, who escapes and meets his mother… Do you want to know how it ends?
Here you can read the full story: Tale of “The Wolf and the Seven Goats”
Tales of Brothers Grimm childhood and home
The extensive literary production of the two brothers undoubtedly changed the course of children’s literature, especially centuries later when these works became classic children’s stories and were readapted, changing the language and eliminating some passages in order to adapt it to contemporary children’s audiences… Did you know that the original Brothers Grimm tales were not intended for children?
Or at least, they did not have a pedagogical approach filtering some themes and descriptions that today we would not consider typical of a children’s story. In fact, you will be surprised to know the rawness and cruelty present in these original stories.
The truth about the original Brothers Grimm tales
Many people are surprised when a copy of the original work, without adaptations, of the tales of the Brothers Grimm falls into their hands. And it is that over the years, the different versions and adaptations of his stories have made us believe that we know the stories almost by heart.
But if we compare the story that came out of the brothers’ pen to the version known to the general public, we will see many substantial differences, although above all, it is worth highlighting the striking cruelty and abrupt bloodshed present in the original works.
The original stories of the Brothers Grimm are unsweetened certain passages that have been modified or directly omitted in modern adaptations, rightly on the other hand, so that it can be a suitable reading for today’s children.
The true tales of the Brothers Grimm
The approach is quite macabre, or it can suffer if we compare it with the version that popular imagination knows. The reader who remembers the stories will be able to compare both versions and see how the original was oriented more towards an adult audience, which undoubtedly also used these stories in a sobering way, using behavior condemnable by any society to represent evil, punishments and the cruelty.
Some time later these stories seemed valid to teach values to children, but they had to make up enough to make them suitable for the younger audience. Over time, the readaptations have ended up generating a story that, although it maintains certain aspects in common, such as some characters or locations, rarely has anything to do with the story that we find in the original tales of the Grimm brothers.
Original versions of the tales of the Brothers Grimm
If above we talked about some of the best-known folk tales of the two brothers, and roughly recounted the story that we all know, in order to refresh the minds of parents and teachers who are reading these lines, then we are going to expose some brushstrokes of the original story, so that the contrast between one version and another can be understood.
The true story of Snow White
The first thing that strikes us is that the protagonist dies after biting the apple, the dwarfs with whom she lives decide to bury her in a glass coffin. Shortly after the prince arrives and asks his servants to move the coffin to the castle.
When Snow White is transferred, one of the servants stumbles and the coffin falls to the ground, with the blow, Snow White spits out the piece of apple that was in her mouth and is reborn…
Finally, after the wedding, the prince orders the witch to be captured, puts her in red-hot iron shoes and makes her dance until she drops dead. An ending to the story that has nothing to do with the dwarfs singing and dancing alongside forest animals.
Cinderella: The Original Tale
We find a ball, some cruel stepsisters and a prince, as in the story we know, but the difference with the original version of the Grimm brothers is that there is no charitable fairy to help Cinderella, but a bird, which helps her. She wears the dress and shoes to go to the dance.
Dances, actually, since in the story there are three ceremonies to which Cinderella attends and manages to escape without the prince discovering who she is. The third time, the prince orders to smear with glue the stairs by which he has seen her escape from her and that is how she loses a shoe. So far the story is similar.
When the prince locates the house where Cinderella lives with the two stepsisters, he goes there with the shoe, and this is where the gore begins. Cinderella’s stepmother tells one of her daughters to cut off her toes so her shoe would fit. And yes, she does.
Not content with mutilating one, the mother decides that the other should cut off her heel, and so the shoe fits and the prince goes with her. But when he sees the blood, “the cunning” prince understands that he has been deceived and rejects the other daughter.
In the end he finds Cinderella and marries her, the sisters, in addition to being lame, are attacked by pigeons and go blind after being pecked in the eyes. The pigeons of the time must have been terrible…
In these and other cases, too violent and miserable attitudes and scenes are shown that reflect the cruelty and crudeness of societies in the Middle Ages, the starting point of many of the popular stories from which the Grimm brothers took as an idea to write the stories. .
Over time, these stories were shaped and adapted to children and modern society, becoming great classics of popular literature for children.