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László Arany's Eredeti népmesék (Authentic Folktales, 1862) is an iconic collection of folktales. The tales in this publication have been entrenched in the national identity as classic Hungarian folktales, and the narrative style of the tales has been established in the public consciousness as the narrative style of Hungarian folktales. The Arany family's collection of folktales ultimately had a similar function in Hungarian culture as the Kinder- und Hausmärchen of the Brothers Grimm had in Germany, but while the text formation of the Grimm tales had been thoroughly explored by philology, the Arany tales had not been accompanied by folkloristic interpretations or in-depth philological analyses. To László Arany, the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm were the ideal, which he indicated in his many theoretical writings as well as his role as a collector and editor of tales. To form the individual texts found in Eredeti népmesék, László Arany used the tale manuscripts transcribed by his mother and sister in the 1850s, modifying them considerably, primarily by employing stylistic devices, many of which can also be observed in the work of the Grimms. This essay examines the extent to which László Arany's editorial and text formation practices were determined by the textological practice developed by the Brothers Grimm, and ultimately the extent to which the stylistic ideals of fairy tales developed by the Grimms contributed to the development of the written, literary version of Hungarian folktales.

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