Hansel and Gretel Join Global Hall of Fame | Culture| Arts, music and lifestyle reporting from Germany | DW | 22.06.2005
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Hansel and Gretel Join Global Hall of Fame

The UN's cultural organization, UNESCO, has accepted the Brothers Grimm fairy tales from Germany to join its Memory of the World list.


It's better to stay away from gingerbread houses

The gothic stories were among 29 works from 24 countries inscribed on the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization's register, an initiative to preserve the world's cultural heritage.

These additions bring to 120 the total number of inscriptions on the Register.

Brüder Grimm Denkmal in Hanau p178

A Brothers Grimm memorial in Hanau, Germany

The German chapter of UNESCO proposed "Grimm's Fairy Tales" for the list, saying it was, along with Martin Luther's translation of the Bible, the most widely published work in German literature.

Documenting Europe 's fairy tales

The collection has been translated into 160 languages and dialects and includes beloved stories such as "Snow White," "Little Red Riding Hood," "Hansel and Gretel" and "Sleeping Beauty."


Walt Disney was among those who helped popularize Grimm's tales such as "Snow White"

"Taken together they are the first systematic summary and scientific documentation of the entire European and Eastern fairy tale tradition," Bernhard Lauer, the director of the Brothers Grimm Museum in the central city of Kassel, said in an essay on behalf of the nomination.

The museum singled out 14 fairy tales and two volumes of commentary by Jacob (1785-1863) and Wilhelm Grimm (1786-1859) published between 1812 and 1857 for preservation.

A German map of America

Amerika erstmals auf einem Globus

The first map of the world that includes America, seen at right

Another successful nomination was the so-called Waldseemüller map, proposed jointly by the United States and Germany.

Drawn in 1507, the map is famous among other things for being the first to give the name "America" to the New World in honor of Italian explorer Amerigo Vespucci. A copy of the map recently sold for $1 million (823,000 euros) at an auction in London.

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