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Anne Frank's dirty jokes revealed

16 May 2018

"Anne Frank writes about sexuality in a disarming way".

The Jewish teenager apparently covered up the pages because she anxious that other people in her hideout would read them, as they contain a series of dirty jokes and her thoughts on sex education, said Ronald Leopold, director of Anne Frank House in Amsterdam.

The pages' content had remained unknown for decades because Frank had erased them. "The "dirty" jokes are classics among growing children".

Anne Frank spent two years with her family and another Jewish family in a secret annex behind a canal-side house in Amsterdam.

They said Anne Frank possibly wrote the text aged between 13 to 15, before she died in a Nazi concentration camp shortly before her 16th birthday.

Now, through digital technology, researchers from the Anne Frank House museum and two other Dutch organizations have found that Frank hid four "dirty" jokes about sex and her perspective on sexual development, contraception, sex and prostitution.

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The Anne Frank House photographed the pages with a high- resolution camera and a light shining on them during a regular check on the diary's condition in 2016. But today it was revealed what lied behind the covered up pages.

The deciphering was done by researchers from the Anne Frank Museum, the Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies and the Huygens Institute for the History of the Netherlands.

The pages, dated to September 28, 1942, were contained in the red-and-white checkered diary Anne had received for her birthday in June of that year, shortly before they went into hiding.

She also described a young woman getting her period around age 14 as "a sign that she is ripe to have relations with a man but one doesn't do that of course before one is married". The passages show how she "creates a fictional situation that makes it easier for her to address the sensitive topics that she writes about", he said.

In an interview, Ronald Leopold, executive director of the Anne Frank House, said, "It is really interesting and adds meaning to our understanding of the diary". The family was provided with food and other essentials by a close-knit group of helpers, until 4 August 1944 when they were discovered and ultimately deported to Auschwitz. He recovered her diary, and had it published two years later.

Her father, Otto Frank managed to survive the Holocaust and published his daughter's diary in 1947, in hopes it would become a revelation to the agony faced by Jews.

Anne Frank's dirty jokes revealed