Jacob (January 4, 1785 - September 20, 1863) and Wilhelm (February 24, 1786 - December 16, 1859), known collectively as The Brothers Grimm (die Gebrüder Grimm) were a pair of German professors, linguists, historians, and mythologists, who were famous for collecting and editing many fairy tales, several of which were adapted into Disney films. The Grimms published these stories in the influential anthology called Kinder- und Hausmärchen (Children's and Household Tales) in various editions from 1812 all the way to 1858. The tales were gathered from various story-tellers around Germany; some had appeared in earlier literary collections, e.g., "Rotkäppchen" as Le Petit Chaperon rouge ("Little Red Riding Hood"), Aschenputtel as Cendrillon ("Cinderella"), and "Dornröschen" as "La Belle au bois dormant" (Sleeping Beauty) in Charles Perrault's 1697 collections, Histoires ou Contes du Temps passé (Histories or Tales of By-gone Times) and Les Contes de ma Mère l'Oye (The Tales of My Mother Goose). The originality of the stories was not the point; the Grimms' purpose was to demonstrate traces of ancient German words, culture, and mythology in the popular stories still being told among the German people in their time.
The first English translation, by Edgar Taylor, appeared in 1826 as German Popular Stories. Various other translations soon followed, and the Grimms' work became extremely popular and influential, leading not only to the collection by various other antiquarians of their own nations' popular stories, but also to original stories being written in the style of their fairy tales, such as Hans Christian Anderson's "The Little Mermaid".
Among the stories that can be rightfully claimed to be theirs that were adapted by the Disney studios are:
- Brave Little Tailor ("Das tapfere Schneiderlein", Tale 20)
- Hansel and Gretel - Babes in the Woods and Hansel and Gretel ("Hänsel und Gretel" ("Jackie and Maggie"), Tale 15)
- The Princess and the Frog ("Der Froschkönig, oder der eiserne Heinrich" ("The Frog King, or Iron Henry"), Tale 1)
- Rapunzel - Tangled ("Rapunzel" ("Rampion"), Tale 12)
- Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs ("Schneewittchen", Tale 53)