The Diary of Anne Frank

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Anne Frank was a young teenage Jewish girl. When she was barely 13 years old her family went into hiding in Amsterdam, in a place called the Achterhuis, a small two-story space behind Otto Franks's company space. The door to the Achterhuis was hidden behind a bookcase. They lived there from July 6, 1942 until August 4, 1944 during the Nazi occupation, with 8 people: Otto and Edith Frank (Anne's parents}, Anne's older sister Margot, Mr. Dussel, a Jewish dentist, and Mr. and Mrs. Daan with their son Peter. During those years Anne wrote her diary, describing her fears of living in hiding for years, the awakening feelings for Peter, the conflicts with her parents, and her aspirations to become a writer.

After more than two years they and some of their helpers were betrayed and their hiding place was discovered. They were arrested by the Grüne Polizei and sent to concentration camps. Meanwhile Miep Gies and Elly Vossen, two of the people who cared for them during the hiding years, found the dairy and saved it.

Anne, Margot and Edith Frank, the family Daan and Mr. Dussel did not survive the German concentration camps. Anne died from exhaustion in Bergen-Belsen, in March, 1945, two months before the liberation of the Netherlands. Only Anne's father Otto made it out of the concentration camps alive. Miep gave him the diary and he edited it for publication under the title "The Diary of Anne Frank".

Recent editions compare her original entries with her father's edited versions.

The house where Anne and her family hid is now a museum. It is at Prinsengracht 263 in the city center, within walking distance of the main train station, the palace and the Dam.

Further Reading:

  • David Barnouw, G. Van der Stroom (eds.): The Diary of Anne Frank: The Critical Edition, Doubleday 1989. Prepared by the Netherlands State Institute for War Documentation. Compares several editions of the diary to the original, includes an extensive study of its authenticity, relates history of the involved people before and after the war.