You’ve Never Heard of “Struwwelpeter?” 

Well perhaps maybe now you should.

The tales all check the morals of kids who could choose to be good.

Some fight, some burn, some starve, some look away…

But the worst comes to those who play with matches,

or suck their thumbs all day. 


Long before there was Alice in Wonderland or Pinocchio, Dr. Heinrich Hoffman wrote Struwwelpeter. A book of rhyming moralistic tales about misbehaving kids and the results of their actions. He was also the illustrator of these fiendishly appealing stories. Wicked and wonderful the illustrations fascinate and appall, shock and surprise. Dr. Hoffmann had success with only this one title (written in German but translated into over 80 languages). There have been numerous retellings and reimaginings of the book. From Darth Vader to Richard Nixon to Adolf Hitler, Struwwelpeter has taken many forms. 

In an unassuming house in Frankfurt, Germany, a quiet museum for the author and the book he created awaits. For a mere 4€ guests can enter the Struwwelpeter Museum, climb through displays, recreate scenes in costume, build puzzles and more to understand the impact and hidden complexity of these seemingly simple stories. Four floors of displays, videos and book covers teach visitors about Hoffman’s compassionate career as a doctor of Psychology and show examples of dozens of works of art inspired from the tales. Some stories truly are international and can reach through generations and with Struwwelpeter Hoffman created a literary legend.  


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