Ludwig Emil Grimm

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Frontispiece and title-page, illustrated by Ludwig Emil Grimm of the 1819 edition of his brothers' Kinder- und Hausmärchen

Ludwig Emil Grimm (14 March 1790 – 4 April 1863(1863-04-04) (aged 73)) was a German illustrator, painter, and engraver.


Ludwig Emil Grimm was born in Hanau, the younger brother of the Brothers Grimm, Jacob and Wilhelm, who took care of him after their parents died in 1798 and supported his education. He went to Munich where he studied with the engraver Karl Hess, and learned how to use the etching needle. Ludwig spent most of his life in Kassel, except for a brief military service during The Wars of Liberation against Napoleon in 1814. He studied at the Munich Academy from 1809 to 1815/6 and he then traveled to Italy for two and a half months.

Ludwig wanted to be a graphic artist from the beginning of his studies. His subject were things he interpreted from nature, and he was not interested in making prints after the old masters. Ad naturam or ad vivam is inscribed in almost every plate of his. He made portrait drawings and etchings of many romantic poets and their friends, which became his most widespread legacy.

Ludwig was one of the founders of Willinghauser painter colony.

In 1817, Ludwig joined his brothers in Kassel where he remained for the rest of his life.

Ludwig was the first illustrator for the collection of fairy tales compiled by his brothers (Kinder- und Hausmärchen, 2nd edition 1819-1822; the first edition of 1812 had not contained illustrations).

In 1832, Ludwig procured a professorship at the local art school and married Marie Böttner after a three-year long engagement. He earned a modest income, but enough to support them for some family excursions across Germany, mostly to visit friends and family.

Ludwig died in Kassel in 1863.

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