Anne Frank's diary

Memoirs of a young Jewish girl during World War II

Anne Frank's Diary is a symbol of the suffering of Jewish people during the Holocaust and World War II.

Europeana Foundation

Anne Frank is considered one of the most important figures of the 20th century, a symbol of the suffering of Jewish people during the Holocaust. Her diary, published posthumously as “The Diary of a Young Girl”, is one of the world’s most read books.

The first entry in her diary, the red-and-white-checkered notebook she got for her 13th birthday, was:

I hope I shall be able to confide in you completely, as I have never been able to do in anyone before, and I hope that you will be a great support and comfort to me.

In the diary, along with personal reflections, thoughts and dreams, Anne Frank captures the grave tragedies inflicted by the madness of the Nazi regime and World War II.

She documents the two years the Frank family spends in a secret attic hiding from the Nazis.

On Christmas Eve 1943, she writes:

I long to ride a bike, dance, whistle, look at the world, feel young and know that I'm free, and yet I can't let it show. Just imagine what would happen if all eight of us were to feel sorry for ourselves or walk around with the discontent clearly visible on our faces. Where would that get us?

On August 1, 1944, Anna makes her last entry, where she writes about the continuous struggle between her contradictory inner selves.

No one knows Anne’s better side, and that’s why most people can’t stand me. Oh, I can be an amusing clown for an afternoon, but after that, everyone’s had enough of me to last a month. Actually, I’m what a romantic movie is to a profound thinker — a mere diversion…

A few days later, Anne and her family are discovered in their hiding place by the security police. This is followed by their arrest, interrogation and deportation to the Auschwitz concentration camp, where Anne dies from typhus aged fifteen.

The diary's popularity inspired a 1955 play by screenwriters Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett, which has been performed across Europe.