Household Stories by Grimms, illustrated by Walter Crane

Grimm's Household Stories

Grimm’s Household Stories

archive.org/details/householdstories00grimrich

This beautiful book published by Macmillan in 1882 is one of signature works of Walter Crane.

It is available on archive.org, but i decided to take only some of the illustrations (o.k., most) from most known fairy tales (o.k., including most of less known). They are all black and white and maybe suitable for coloring on some rainy afternoons.

I’ll try to present the illustrations with some short notes about fairy tales.

Let’s start the journey on Household Stories by brothers Grimm!

Little Red Cap meets wolf

Little Red Cap meets wolf

This story is best know as Little Red Riding Hood but the translation of Rotkäppchen is really Red Cap and I can’t explain when and why cap became hood in English.

Big bad wolf is waiting...

Big bad wolf is waiting…

And another one:

Almond tree: bird with a millstone

Almond tree: bird with a millstone

This fairy tale is now known as The Juniper Tree. But in most versions of Grimm’s collections it is not present anymore. It is full of blood and violence and improper for kids by today’s standards.

The Almond Tree

The Almond Tree

Did I mention it has cannibalism too?

Almond tree: happy end

Almond tree: happy end

Just like in Red Cap, we have a motif of resurrection in Almond Tree.

Next fairy tale has something other in common with Almond Tree: a tree with some magic powers and of course we can notice another important role of birds, popular helpers in Grimms’ Fairy Tales.

Aschenputtel with her litle helpers

Aschenputtel with her litle helpers

Just in case if you didn’t recognize her: Aschenputtel is more known as Cinderella.

Cinderella aka Aschenputtel and her slipper

Cinderella aka Aschenputtel and her slipper

Don’t forget: in Grimms’ Cinderella slippers are made of gold. Glass slippers are invented by Perrault.

Famous scene from Bremen's Town Musicians

Famous scene from Bremen’s Town Musicians

It seems fairy tales with animals in leading roles were more popular in 19 th century than now.

Animals win, robber loose!

Animals win, robber loose!

Brother and sister is another tail about love, sacrifice and magic. In this tail sister shows more patience and smartness than her brother, what is not so rare in classic fairy tales but is too often forgotten in some reviews where only passive heroines are considered as bad examples. But if you want to criticize classics, maybe you should read them first?

Brother and sister: the hunt

Brother and sister: the hunt

It is a good story. Too pity it is almost forgotten.

Brother and sister: he was cursed, but love prevails

Brother and sister: he was cursed, but love prevails

Let’s look at illustrations from Cat and Mouse in partnership:

Cats

Cats

Mouse

Mouse

Yes, another almost forgotten beauty…

And Clever Gretel (no relation with Hansel and Gretel) is another denial of stereotypical women’s role in fairy tales.

Clever Gretel at work

Clever Gretel at work

She likes to drink, she likes to eat and she really likes to outsmart men!

Clever Gretel is really clever lady


Clever Gretel is really clever lady

The fisherman and his wife:

It's never enough!

It’s never enough!

She wants more and more and more until …

They end up without everything but bitterness

They end up without everything but bitterness

Frog Prince (aka Frog King is the one by which the first collection of Grimms started.

She wants a ball and he wants her

She wants a ball and he wants her

Yes, this is another story about growing up and taking responsibilities.

Iron Henry at the end in some interpretations symbolizes mother

Iron Henry at the end in some interpretations symbolizes mother

Here we go with one of my all time favorites – Gallant Tailor of Brave Little Tailor!

Giants will kill each other and tailor will win!

Giants will kill each other and tailor will win!

Well, after all he did kill seven at once…

Seven flies, of course!

Seven flies, of course!

We can find variations of The Golden Bird in most countries in the world. In Russia for instance it is called Fire Bird.

Fox is a helper in the Golden Bird

Fox is a helper in the Golden Bird

Only the youngest son didn't fall asleep

Only the youngest son didn’t fall asleep

Fox was actually enchanted prince

Fox was actually enchanted prince

Another funny fairy tale is Golden Goose:

Everybody wanted a feather from golden goose

Everybody wanted a feather from golden goose

And happy end for the youngest brother

And happy end for the youngest brother

Goose Girl is another Grimm’s classic telling how important is a given word.

Her hair was a sign of her royal origin

Her hair was a sign of her royal origin

Princess or goose girl?

Princess or goose girl?

Treacherous servant is punished!

Treacherous servant is punished!

Next scene is from Hansel and Grethel. It has many religious overtones and this is one of the most known ever.

Hansel and Grethel safely returning home

Hansel and Grethel safely returning home

This one is funny:

Hans in luck

Hans in luck

No matter what Hans has, there is always something he can take for exchange…

Hans is always for business

Hans is always ready for business

Here we go with King Thrushbeard. The princess is too rude to him and he teaches her a lesson.

King Thrushbeard in action

King Thrushbeard in action

In the end she realize he is actually great match and we happy everything ready for happy ending.

King Thrushbeard has happy end

King Thrushbeard has happy end

Mother hulda is a story about good and bad girl.

Opening scene in Mother Hulda

Opening scene in Mother Hulda

One is ready for work and the other not.

Girl worked hard...

Girl worked hard…

One got reward and the other doesn’t. How simple is that!

...and she is rewarded!

…and she is rewarded!

The story about prudent Hans is different. Hans is not very smart…

Prudent Hans on his way

Prudent Hans on his way

He had many opportunities, but the bride lost her patience at the end.

He'll do better next time!

He’ll do better next time!

In old fairy tales the motif of animal groom (or bride) was very popular.

Rabbit's bride

Rabbit’s bride

Sometimes we find the perfect partner in very unusual places.

Happily ever after

Happily ever after

And another classic:

Rapunzel, Rapunzel!

Rapunzel, Rapunzel!

Of course the story is different than in Disney’s animated movie.

In first Grimms' version Rapunzel had two children

In first Grimms’ version Rapunzel had two children

In old times pregnant women’s cravings for certain foods were taken very seriously.

Rapunzel is a herb

Rapunzel is a herb

Let’s check another story with babe in the wood!

Robber Bridegroom

Robber Bridegroom

This fairy tale is another great example of active heroine which can be shown to all so called experts who complain about passive roles of the girls in Grimms’ fairy tales. Only few of them were actually passive and the most important question is: why are these the most popular? It is certainly not fault of brothers Grimm!

She is ready...

She is ready…

…for some action…

...and they are punished!

…and they are punished!

And another one which is known to most kids only as a sidekick from profitable franchise about something completely different:

Rumpelstiltskin can turn straw to gold

Rumpelstiltskin can turn straw to gold

But this has a price!

Rumpelstiltskin is angry

Rumpelstiltskin is angry

Next one doesn’t need introduction, I suppose…

Famous scene from Sleeping Beauty

Famous scene from Sleeping Beauty

Did you know thorns around Sleeping Beauty’s castle were ‘invented’ by Grimms?

Many tried, only one succeeded

Many tried, only one succeeded

This story is loaded with symbolism.

Another happy end

Another happy end

Let’s continue with Snow White:

snow white and apple

Can she resist?

Elves at the Snow White's coffin

Elves at the coffin

Mirror, mirror

Mirror, mirror

Next fairy tale is called The Elves. It has interesting message – if you return good deed, you can loose help!

The made great shoes

The made great shoes

 

Not exactly hapy end!

Not exactly hapy end!

Next one is more of a fable than fairy tail:

Mouse, bird and sausage were friends

Mouse, bird and sausage were friends

 

Well, nothing lasts forever

Well, nothing lasts forever

And another from the same category:

Straw, coal, bean

Straw, coal, bean

 

Now we know why!

Now we know why!

And now a classic fairy tale about three brothers and three magic gifts!

Table, ass and stick

Table, ass and stick

 

The goat initiated everything

The goat initiated everything

We continue with a fairy tale with a test.

Three little men in the wood

Three little men in the wood

 

Good wins, bad looses

Good wins, bad looses

Less known story about three spinsters:

Three spinsters

Three spinsters

 

Spinning carries a lot of symbolic power

Spinning carries a lot of symbolic power

Tom Thumb:

He was small...

He was small…

 

...but showed class!

…but showed class!

White snake comes next.

This scene is similar to Adam and Eve in the garden of Even

This scene is similar to Adam and Eve in the garden of Even

 

Animal helpers are always welcome

Animal helpers are always welcome

 

Another happy ending

Another happy ending

The final fairy tale is more known as Wolf and Seven Kids but in this version we have seven goslings.

Wolf and seven goslings

Wolf and seven goslings

 

Let's celebrate!

Let’s celebrate!

Wow, I made it. I hope you enjoyed this beautiful work as much as I did. Walter Crane made terrific job with Grimms’ Fairy Tales and I can only applaud.

Bravo!

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6 thoughts on “Household Stories by Grimms, illustrated by Walter Crane

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