The Brothers Grimms: From Brothers Who Worked Together to Collect Tales to Brothers Who Work Together to Terrorize People

In light of the recent bombings in Boston, I’ve chosen to dedicate this post to discuss the collaborations of the two brothers suspected to be behind the bombings in comparison to the collaborations of the brothers Grimm.

Wilhelm and Jacob Grimm (the brothers Grimm) were forced to grow up and take on adult responsibility at a very young age. The two siblings, born and raised in Germany, were the eldest in a family of  six. Philipp Grimm died unexpectedly of pneumonia when the boys were 11 and 10 years of age. The entire family found themselves facing economic difficulties afterwards and depended on their extended family for support. Wilhelm and Jacob immediately took charge of the family as the two eldest men in the household.

If taking on the responsibilities of their father at such a young age weren’t challenging enough, the two brothers also faced harsh discrimination from the prestigious school they attended due to their difference in economic status from fellow peers. The boys, who were very studious and intelligent, managed to graduate at the head of their classes despite the odds.They went on to attend and graduate college, which is where their passion for German culture and the folklore that came with it was ignited.


From thereon out, the brothers chose to collect tales from housewives and working women and publish them into a series of books. They wanted to be sure to reconnect the general public to their roots and culture through these tales to reinforce a strong sense of patriotism and cultural pride in their readers, namely children.

Despite the hardships and obstacles that were placed in their way, Wilhelm and Jacob chose to work harder and reach their goals and dreams rather than wither away in self pity and anger. They also chose to combine their genius and collaboratively create publications of tales that are still part of popular culture all around the world today.

Unfortunately, genius siblings today have put their intelligence to bad use. Case-in-point, the two brothers who are suspected of having bombed the Boston marathon on April 15, 2013, Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev. Though little is known of the two brothers’ familial background, it has been made clear that, like the Grimms, they excelled intellectually and in extracurriculars despite their hardships.

The Tsarnaev brothers were not native to the United States. Both were of Chechnyan descent but fled to the U.S. with their family in 2002. Their native Chechnya was war-racked and the family was unable to resettle in the country. Coming from a war-torn country and suddenly being thrust into an entirely different culture in the United States, the two brothers faced the hardships of being immigrants trying to make their way in a foreign country. Both, however, managed to make great achievements. The eldest of the two, Tamerlan, was a boxing champion. He expressed interest in joining the U.S. Olympics boxing team. Dzhokhar was attending university in Massachusetts and described by his classmates as having been a funny, athletic and smart man.


Although nothing has been confirmed yet, the two suspects have been tied to the bombings in the Boston marathon, where they are suspected of having placed a bombs near the finish line, killing three and injuring over 100 people. Tamerlan was killed during a shoot out with police while Dzhokhar was found severely injured and in critical condition recently and is being treated. It is believed that the eldest of the two brothers was an Islamic extremist.

If the suspects are truly the terrorists behind the bombings, then the world will have seen sibling intelligence put together to harm rather than help people. They may have ultimately been similar to the brothers Grimm in personalities (one of the brothers Grimm was more outgoing while the other was an introvert; Dzhokhar was considered more social and outgoing by friends and family while Tamerlan was considered a loner) and intellect, yet they chose to work together to hurt people at a large scale rather than inform them and culturally influence them like the two writers did.

Unfortunately, this is the world we all live in today.





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