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  • Anne Frank was a Jewish girl who became famous for the diary she wrote during the Second World War.

  • She was born in the German city of Frankfurt in 1929.

  • She had a sister, Margot, who was three years older.

  • Things were going badly in Germany.

  • Unemployment was high and many people were poor.

  • At the same time, Adolf Hitler and his Nazi party were gaining supporters by promising to solve the country's problems.

  • The Nazis hated the Jews and blamed them for the problems.

  • When the Nazis came to power in 1933, hostility to the Jews increased.

  • Anne's parents, Otto and Edith, decided to flee to the Netherlands.

  • They settled in Amsterdam, here, on Merwedeplein.

  • Anne soon felt at home.

  • She went to school, learned Dutch, and made new friends.

  • Six years later, war broke out across Europe.

  • In 1939, Nazi Germany invaded Poland, and in 1940, the German army occupied the Netherlands.

  • The Nazi occupiers made life increasingly difficult for Jews.

  • Jews have to wear a Jewish star, Jews have to hand in their bicycles.

  • Jews are not allowed in the tram, Jews are not allowed to ride in cars.

  • Jews must attend Jewish schools, and so on and so forth.

  • In the summer of 1942 after Anne's sister, Margot, was ordered to report for a so-called labor camp, the Frank family went into hiding behind Otto's business on the Prinsengracht.

  • They were joined there later by the Van Pels family and Fritz Pfeffer.

  • The eight people in hiding were helped by loyal staff and friends of Otto's: Miep and Jan Gies, Johan Voskuijl and his daughter Bep, Victor Kugler and Johannes Kleiman.

  • Meanwhile, the Nazis had tightened their grip, organizing raids, and arresting and deporting Jews to so-called labor camps.

  • In reality, these were concentration and death camps.

  • In her diary, Anne wrote about living in the hiding place, the war, and her thoughts and feelings.

  • I feel bad for lying in a warm bed while my dearest friends are out there somewhere, thrown or fallen to the ground.

  • And that, only because they are Jews.

  • An appeal from the Dutch government in London inspired Anne to rework her diary entries into a book.

  • Before she had finished, however, their hiding place was discovered and all eight were captured on the 4th of August, 1944.

  • They were deported to the concentration and death camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau.

  • Miep Gies and Bep Voskuijl, two of the helpers, found the diaries Anne had left behind; Miep kept them in case Anne ever came back.

  • But she didn't come back.

  • In February 1945, Anne and Margot died of typhus in appalling conditions in the concentration camp, Bergen-Belsen.

  • Anne was 15.

  • Of the eight people, only Anne's father, Otto, survived the war.

  • When he read Anne's diaries after the war, they made a deep impression.

  • He discovered how much writing had meant to her.

  • No one who doesn't write can know how fine it is.

  • And if I don't have the talent to write for newspapers or books, well, then, I can always go on writing for myself.

  • Otto read how Anne had hoped to publish a book, so he carried out her wish.

  • Anne's story about life in hiding and the war is read all over the world.

  • Her diary has been translated into more than 70 languages.

  • The hiding place is now a museum, and welcomes more than a million visitors a year.

Anne Frank was a Jewish girl who became famous for the diary she wrote during the Second World War.

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Who was Anne Frank? | Anne Frank House | Explained

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    Julianne Sung posted on 2022/04/25
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