One of the most impactful books of the twentieth century, The Diary of a Young Girl, was written by teenager Anne Frank between 1942 and 1944. Her German family, Father Otto, mother Edith and sister Margot, were of Jewish heritage. They fled the persecution of Jews in Germany during the 1930s, and settled in Amsterdam (The Netherlands). However, during the Second World War The Netherlands were occupied by Germany and the Frank family went into hiding, fearing for their lives.
As the persecution spread through the occupied Netherlands, peaking between 1942 and 1944, Anne's family hid in secret rooms (known as the Achterhuis - Secret Annexe) behind a bookcase at her father Otto's workplace. They were helped by employees and joined in hiding by a couple of other families. Despite this they were captured by the Gestapo in August 1944, after allegedly being betrayed: The origin of the betrayal remains a mystery. Within six months Anne and her sister Margot were both dead, most likely falling victim to typhus at the Berger-Belsen Concentration Camp in Germany, where they were being held.
Anne was just fifteen.
During the period of hiding from the Gestapo, Anne kept a diary which she'd received as a thirteenth birthday present. It was an autograph book, but she chose to use it as a diary. After the war, the only immediate family survivor was Otto Frank (Edith had died in Auschwitz Concentration Camp of starvation in January 1945). He returned to Amsterdam to discover his secretary, Miep Gies, had rescued and kept Anne's handwritten diaries and notes.
These were subsequently published under the title Het Achterhuis (The Annexe) in 1947 by Uitgeverij Contact of Amsterdam. Translated into over seventy languages and read by millions around the world, Anne Frank's Diary showed the 'indestructible nature of the human spirit', and the immense strength of its young author.
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Price Guide for Select Editions
Unless stated otherwise, prices are for first and special editions in the stated formats, first printing, hardback books with dust jackets, both in very good condition.
All prices are for guidance only - further research is recommended as there are many variables which impact the value of second hand books and editions can be hard to identify. It should be noted that signed copies were not signed by Anne Frank as all editions of her diary were published posthumously.
If you need values in US dollars, Euros or a host of other major currencies, a currency converter is included in the right hand sidebar of this page, and another in the footer area.
- 1947 Het Achterhuis, published by Uitgeverij Contact, 1st Dutch edition in the Dutch language, £16,000
- 1950 Journal, with a frontispiece by Marc Chagall, published by Calmann-Levy, 1st French edition in the French language, limited edition of 495 copies, softcover binding, £1,000
- 1952 The Diary of a Young Girl, translated by B.M. Mooyaart-Doubleday, published by Constellation Books, 1st UK edition, £320
- 1954 Anne Frank's Diary, translated by B.M. Mooyaart-Doubleday, published by Valentine Mitchell, 1st US edition, £45
- 1959 The Works of Anne Frank: Her Short Stories, Essays and Her Diary, with illustrations by Peter Spier, published by Doubleday, 1st US edition, £50
- 1967 Anne Frank: A Play, by Meyer Levin, privately published by M. Levin, USA 1st edition, £300
- 1985 Diary of a Young Girl/Het Achterhuis, illustrated by Joseph Goldyne, in two volumes, folio, with a slipcase, published by Pennyroyal Press, USA limited edition of 350 numbered and signed sets, signed by Joseph Goldyne and Barry Moser (book designer), £1,000
- 1989 The Diary of Anne Frank: The Critical Edition, published by Viking, 1st UK edition, £85
- 1989 The Diary of Anne Frank, edited by C. Martin, published by Longmans, 1st UK edition, £60
- 1995 The Diary of Anne Frank, edited by B.M. Mooyaart-Doubleday, published by Macmillan Children's Books, 1st UK edition, £45
- 1997 The Diary of a Young Girl: The Definitive Edition, edited by Otto H. Frank and Miriam Pressier, translated by Susan Massotty, published by Viking, 1st UK edition, £40