I’ve known Grimm’s Fairy Tales all my life, so have you. So have people who’ve never read, never heard of the Grimm brothers (but is there anybody who doesn’t know what a fairy tale is?)
bk gave me a kindle, gave me access to his .mobi library, put Grimm’s Fairy Tales on the kindle for me, but it’s only the last couple of days I’m actually reading it. I heard the stories as a kid, every movie I’ve ever seen was made by people who knew the stories their life long, I read a couple myself as a teen … I heard of the Grimm brothers in school, learned more in college, studied Grimm’s Law in grad school … Knew they were serious people in a variety of fields …
I didn’t know till this week that the Fairy Tales is the biggest selling book (after the Bible) in German, ever! I didn’t know that the brothers themselves bowdlerized the stories, and of course they’ve been further bowdlerized ever since. Nevertheless:
e-books aren’t hard to get now, download it, dig your old edition from the shelves of your library, read the damn thing. I tell you: the phrasing, the diction … is fabulous!
As I kid I heard Dickens over and over again. I’ve been aware of how A Christmas Carol provides a foundation for my own appreciation of English, but I hadn’t been aware of how fundamental the Grimms’ prose is. Thing is: the peasant diction is not inevitable-seeming. It’s full of surprises, wonderful.