Blue Flower

Julius Wolff (1834-1910) was born to a cloth maker in Quedlinburg. He studied economics and philosophy in Berlin preparing to take over his father's business. The company suffered substantial financial troubles and Julius sold it to establish a short-lived newspaper in his hometown. After only one year he joined the army in Germany's war against France as an officer. In 1972 he started a career as a freelance writer. One of his favorite themes was the Pied Piper of Hamelin, done in two separate books, one written as an adventure, the other as a collection of songs. This brought him another award - in 1884 he became an honorary citizen of Hamelin.

You can find a few tidbits about Hamelin, a lovely German city with a few really original ideas for tourists, here:


Julius Wolff became a professor in 1904 and in 1910 his home-town Quedlinburg awarded him with an honorary citizenship as well. There was also a fountain built in his memory. Julius Wolff's most popular works were Till Eulenspiegel, The Flying Dutchman, The Raubgraf and already mentioned Pied Piper of Hamelin, here presented with illustrations by Philipp Grot Johann.
















Philipp Grot Johann (1841-1892) also known as Philip Grotjohann, as he often signed himself) was born in Stettin (today's Szczecin) and started his career in engineering, working in ship- and locomotive building industry, got first degree in Polytechnic in Hannover before he met Peter von Cornelius and decided for studies in art in Dusseldorf, where he remained until his death (with the only longer exception of one year of studies in Antwerp). He soon gained a reputation of highly competent illustrator, made graphics for eminent authors like German literary giants Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and Friedrich Schiller, British writers like Walter Scott or William Shakespeare, but worked on other projects, like stained glasses and murals as well. P. Grott Johann's illustrations of Grimm's Fairy Tales are considered as his top achievement. He was chosen to illustrate first fully illustrated edition for which publishers waited to come out of copyright. There are 180 illustrations altogether! Unfortunately, Grot Johann died before the project was finished, so it was continued by another eminent illustrator of the time: Robert Leinweber, but this is another story.


The Pied Piper (Ratcatcher) from Hamelin presented here was first published in 1876 Grot'sche Verlagsbuchhandlung in Berlin, the main publisher of both authors presented in this post. Extensive text is written in verse on more than two hundred pages with 18 illustrations (one for each chapter) and 17 vignettes (one chapter ended exactly at the end of the page, so the vignette was not needed). We present all graphics (a cover page from 1884 edition included) together with the titles for each chapter and a decorative capital letter by which each first verse in the chapter starts. Enjoy the beauty made by classic masters.