"One day it occurred to me that it had been many years since the world had been afforded the spectacle of a man adventurous enough to undertake a journey through Germany on foot. After much thought, I decided that I was a person fitted to furnish to mankind this spectacle. So I determined to do it. This was in March, 1878." Mark Twain, A Tramp Abroad


In the Footsteps of the Grimm Bro's

The town of Marburg is known for its connection to Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm who attended the University in the very early 1800’s. While they were here they collected and recorded the local fairy tales. In honor of these fine fellows Marburg mounted symbols from several of these tales in different parts of the city and provided a map to help you locate them. They market it as a fun exercise program, and by the time we were finished (or given up is more like it) we understood why…

Here we are: me, Sam (the navigator with the map and a German dictionary), Jamie (Sam’s wife), Evey, and the father (taking the picture). The dark red timber-frame house directly behind Sam is where the Grimm brothers lived while studying in Marburg.

The Frog Prince (you know, the one where the girl has to kiss the frog in order to turn him back into a prince)

The Porcupine and the Hare (I have no idea about this one except that it has something to do with a hare chasing a porcupine, or maybe it is the other way around???)

A donkey with gold coins coming out of its butt (I don’t know either…)

Something about somebody killing 7 flies with one swat. You can see the metal and glass flies on the side of the building. (Don’t know this story either—I guess my parents didn’t read me very many fairy tales as a child.)

The Billy Goats Gruff (I always thought there was a troll involved, but it looks more like a bear here.)

Some quote from the Grimm brothers with the castle in the background (Being the only non-German speaker in the group I couldn’t read it, but it has something to do with complaining about how many steps exist in Marburg and that it’s a pain getting around. As the story goes, that is why the Grimm's left Marburg.)

The Seven Dwarves (you can see the tips of their hats poking out above the castle walls, but no sighting of Snow White)

Here’s where we ran into problems. Supposedly there is some symbol from Hansel and Gretel as well as the golden shoe from Cinderella in this courtyard by the church. We looked and looked but couldn’t find a thing. Finally, I decided that this little house was good enough for the Hansel and Gretel story (you know, the gingerbread house where the witch lives), but we never found the shoe. I have gone back twice since then looking for the ridiculous shoe, but still no luck. Some guy we ran into said he found it, but I believe he is lying.

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