'Alice in Wonderland' manuscript is sent as a Christmas present

'Alice in Wonderland' manuscript is sent as a Christmas present

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On November 26, 1862, Oxford mathematician Charles Lutwidge Dodgson sends a handwritten manuscript called Alice’s Adventures Under Ground to 10-year-old Alice Liddell.

READ MORE: Who is the Real Alice in Wonderland?

The 30-year-old Dodgson, better known by his nom de plume Lewis Carroll, made up the story one day on a picnic with young Alice and her two sisters, the children of one of Dodgson’s colleagues. Dodgson, the son of a country parson, had been brilliant at both mathematics and wordplay since childhood, when he enjoyed making up games. However, he suffered from a severe stammer, except when he spoke with children. He had many young friends who enjoyed his fantastic stories: The Liddell children thought his tale of a girl who falls down a rabbit hole was one of his best efforts, and Alice insisted he write it down.

During a visit to the Liddells, English novelist Henry Kingsley happened to notice the manuscript. After reading it, he suggested to Mrs. Liddell that it be published. Dodgson published the book at his own expense, under the name Lewis Carroll, in 1865. The story is one of the earliest children’s books written simply to amuse children, not to teach them. The book’s sequel, Through the Looking Glass, was published in 1871. Dodgson’s other works, including a poetry collection called Phantasmagoria and Other Poems, and another children’s book, Sylvia and Bruno, did not gain the same enduring popularity as the Alice books. Dodgson died in 1898.

The Alice in Wonderland Story First Told

A classic children's book was born on July 4th, 1862.

In 1856 the classical scholar Henry Liddell, of Liddell and Scott’s Greek-English Lexicon, moved into Christ Church, Oxford, where he had been appointed dean. With him were his wife and their sizeable brood of children, the most interesting of whom in the light of developments was their second daughter, Alice. The family soon became close friends with one of the Christ Church bachelor dons, the mathematician Charles Lutwidge Dodgson. Himself the eldest brother of eight siblings, Dodgson got on well with children, who liked him and relished his ability to tell them strange, exotic and engagingly whimsical stories.

On that particular July day, when Alice was ten, she and two of her sisters set out from Folly Bridge in a rowing boat with the 30-year-old Dodgson and a friend of his, a Trinity College don called Robinson Duckworth, along the Isis for a picnic at Godstow. On the way the girls asked Dodgson to tell them a story and he responded with a tale he made up as he went along about the fantastic world that a girl called Alice discovered when she went down a rabbit-hole. The real Alice was so delighted that she asked him to write it down for her, which he presently did, with some extra episodes added, as well as his own illustrations. He later showed Alice’s Adventures Under Ground to his friend, the Scottish author George Macdonald, whose children were so taken with it that Dodgson was encouraged to look for a publisher. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland duly came out from Macmillan in 1865 under the pseudonym Lewis Carroll, which was arrived at by a complicated process that involved turning the names Charles Lutwidge into Latin as Carolus Ludovicus and inverting them. The book had the benefit of amazing illustrations by John Tenniel. Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There followed in 1871. The two works are among the most popular and most famous children’s books in the English language and, like the best children’s literature, are also loved by adults. An authority on the subject and a children’s writer himself, the late Roger Lancelyn Green, called them ‘the perfect creation of the logical and mathematical mind applied to the pure and unadulterated amusement of children. ’

There is no doubt that Alice Liddell gave her name to the fictional Alice, though Dodgson always denied that he intended a portrait of her. The fictional Alice had the same birthday as the real one, May 4th and, in the poem in Through the Looking Glass that starts ‘A boat beneath a sunny sky,’ the first letter of each line spells out the real Alice’s full name – Alice Pleasance Liddell. Incidentally, it also seems that the character of the Red Queen in Through the Looking Glass owed something to the Liddell children’s alarming governess.

The friendship between the Liddells and Dodgson had broken down in 1863, for reasons that are not clear – the relevant page in his diary was cut out by one of his descendants – but it may be that Mrs Liddell was uneasy about him and Alice. Polite relations were resumed after a few months, but the earlier warmth did not return.

Still to come in 1876 was another masterpiece, The Hunting of the Snark. Dodgson also published other volumes of poetry, as well as learned books on mathematics, and he invented gadgets, puzzles and games, including a forerunner of Scrabble. He remained a bachelor to his death in 1898, a few days before his 66th birthday. Quantities of ink have been spilled on what exactly was the nature of his feelings for Alice Liddell and the many other young girls he knew and loved. He was an excellent photographer and his liking for taking photos of young girls in the nude makes it hard not to think that there was a deep core of sexual feeling there, but the evidence strongly suggests that this was never openly manifested and that he never molested any of them.

Alice Liddell grew up a beauty and in the 1870s she seems to have attracted Queen Victoria’s youngest son, Prince Leopold, Duke of Albany, but nothing came of it, though he was later godfather to one of Alice’s sons. In 1880 she married a man called Reginald Hargreaves. Dodgson sent them a wedding present. When Hargreaves died in 1926 Alice was so short of money that she put the manuscript of Alice’s underground adventures that Dodgson had given her up for auction at Sotheby’s. It fetched £15,400 (equivalent to £450,000 or more today). In her last years she said she was ‘tired of being Alice in Wonderland’. She died in 1934 at the age of 82.

Just history.

Alice in Wonderland illustration

Charles Lutwidge Dodgson was not a children’s author. Not an author at all. He was a mathematician, and was more at home with numbers than words. Dodgson was a bachelor living in the college town of Oxford, England. In 1856, Christ Church, where he was a member, had a new dean appointed. Henry Liddell, a classical scholar of some renown, and his wife and children moved into town. Dodgson and the Liddells struck up a friendship, and was especially friendly with their children. Although he had none of his own, Dodgson seemed to have a way with children and charmed them with his ability to tell whimsical stories.

One bright summer day in July 1862, the Liddell’s second daughter, Alice, and her two sisters were out on an adventure. They went rowing with Dodgson and his friend Reverend Robinson Duckworth and stopped for a picnic along the banks of the river. To amuse them on the journey, Dodgson made up a story about a girl called Alice who followed a white rabbit down a rabbit hole. He was so detailed about the adventures young Alice had there. The real Alice Liddell enjoyed the stories so much, she asked Dodgson to write it down. He complied both adding more story and some original illustrations. Additional stories were added, and eventually he called it Alice’s Adventures Under Ground. Dodgson created a manuscript which was gifted to Alice for Christmas 1864. The dedication declared it, “A Christmas Gift to a Dear Child in Memory of a Summer’s Day”. And with that simple boat trip, a literary classic was born.

This was the manuscript was shown to Dodgson’s friend, the Scottish author George Macdonald and his family. The Macdonald children were likewise enchanted by the adventures of Alice, and Macdonald encouraged Dodgson to seek out a publisher. After some searching and a name change, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland was published by Macmillan in 1865. Dodgson published under a pseudonym- Lewis Carroll. It was the translation into Latin of Dodgson’s first and middle name- Charles Lutwidge into Carolus Ludovicus.

Cover of the 1898 edition

However, being Alice in wonderland did not do much for Alice Liddell. Something happened in 1863, which drove Dodgson and the Liddell family apart. We don’t have much information about this as the relevant pages in Dodgson’s diary were removed later by a family member. Robert Douglas-Fairhurst writes charitably, “unless he was merely the victim of an unchecked rumor rippling around Oxford, Carroll certainly seems to have said or done something to disturb the Liddells.” Dodgson had an affinity for children, especially young girls. That coupled with photographs found later, which he took of young girls in the nude certainly adds fuel to the fire that something inappropriate went on. Douglas-Fairhurst seems to draw the conclusion that Dodgson did not act on his desires, but that is also only speculation. What we do know is the last photograph Dodgson took of Alice Liddell shows a young woman who looks deeply depressed.

Alice grew up to be a beautiful young woman, who attracted the attention of many suitors including Queen Victoria’s youngest son. She eventually married Reginald Hargreaves and they lived together until Reginald’s death in 1926. Alice fell upon hard times and sold the original manuscript she had received for Christmas 1864 at auction at Southeby’s. She received the tidy sum of 15,400 pounds, which is 450,000 pounds in today’s money. She also received an honorary degree from Columbia University in 1932, solely for being the inspiration for the book.

Sadly before she died in 1934, Alice remarked she was “tired of being Alice in Wonderland”. Hopefully, she found some peace.

Tag: Alice in Wonderland

Biên dịch: Nguyễn Thị Kim Phụng

Vào ngày này năm 1862, giáo sư toán của trường Oxford, Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, đã gửi một bản thảo viết tay có tên Alice’s Adventures Under Ground cho cô bé 10 tuổi Alice Liddell.

Anh chàng Dodgson 30 tuổi, được biết đến nhiều hơn với bút danh Lewis Carroll, đã sáng tác nên câu chuyện trong chuyến dã ngoại với Alice và hai chị gái của cô bé, con của một trong những đồng nghiệp của Dodgson. Là con trai của một người dân quê, Dodgson vốn đã rất xuất sắc trong cả toán học lẫn chơi chữ từ thuở nhỏ, khi còn là một cậu bé thích tự tạo trò chơi cho riêng mình. Tuy nhiên, anh bị mắc chứng nói lắp trầm trọng, ngoại trừ khi nói chuyện với trẻ con. Continue reading 󈬊/11/1862: Bản thảo ‘Alice in Wonderland’ được gửi làm quà Giáng sinh”

Tag: Alice in Wonderland

Biên dịch: Nguyễn Thị Kim Phụng

Vào ngày này năm 1862, giáo sư toán của trường Oxford, Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, đã gửi một bản thảo viết tay có tên Alice’s Adventures Under Ground cho cô bé 10 tuổi Alice Liddell.

Anh chàng Dodgson 30 tuổi, được biết đến nhiều hơn với bút danh Lewis Carroll, đã sáng tác nên câu chuyện trong chuyến dã ngoại với Alice và hai chị gái của cô bé, con của một trong những đồng nghiệp của Dodgson. Là con trai của một người dân quê, Dodgson vốn đã rất xuất sắc trong cả toán học lẫn chơi chữ từ thuở nhỏ, khi còn là một cậu bé thích tự tạo trò chơi cho riêng mình. Tuy nhiên, anh bị mắc chứng nói lắp trầm trọng, ngoại trừ khi nói chuyện với trẻ con. Continue reading 󈬊/11/1862: Bản thảo ‘Alice in Wonderland’ được gửi làm quà Giáng sinh”

26/11/1862: Bản thảo ‘Alice in Wonderland’ được gửi làm quà Giáng sinh

Vào ngày này năm 1862, giáo sư toán của trường Oxford, Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, đã gửi một bản thảo viết tay có tên Alice’s Adventures Under Ground cho cô bé 10 tuổi Alice Liddell.

Anh chàng Dodgson 30 tuổi, được biết đến nhiều hơn với bút danh Lewis Carroll, đã sáng tác nên câu chuyện trong chuyến dã ngoại với Alice và hai chị gái của cô bé, con của một trong những đồng nghiệp của Dodgson. Là con trai của một người dân quê, Dodgson vốn đã rất xuất sắc trong cả toán học lẫn chơi chữ từ thuở nhỏ, khi còn là một cậu bé thích tự tạo trò chơi cho riêng mình. Tuy nhiên, anh bị mắc chứng nói lắp trầm trọng, ngoại trừ khi nói chuyện với trẻ con.

Thật ra Dodgson có khá nhiều bạn nhỏ thích thú những câu chuyện tuyệt vời của mình: Bọn trẻ nhà Liddell nghĩ rằng câu chuyện về cô gái rơi xuống hố thỏ là một trong những câu chuyện tuyệt vời nhất của anh, và Alice nhất quyết đòi Dodgson viết nó ra.

Trong một lần đến thăm gia đình Liddells, tiểu thuyết gia người Anh Henry Kingsley đã tình cờ để ý đến bản thảo. Sau khi đọc nó, ông đề nghị với bà Liddell rằng nó nên được xuất bản. Dodgson đã bỏ tiền túi để xuất bản cuốn sách, dưới tên Lewis Carroll, vào năm 1865. Câu chuyện là một trong những cuốn sách đầu tiên viết dành riêng cho trẻ em, đơn giản chỉ để giải trí chứ không phải để dạy chúng. Phần tiếp theo của cuốn sách, Through the Looking Glass, được xuất bản vào năm 1871. Các tác phẩm khác của Dodgson, bao gồm tập thơ có tên Phantasmagoria and Other Poems, và một cuốn sách dành cho trẻ em khác, Sylvia và Bruno, thì không nổi tiếng lâu dài như loạt truyện Alice. Dodgson qua đời năm 1898.

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland: Chapter Summaries

Chapter One &ndash Down the Rabbit Hole: Alice, a girl of seven years, is feeling bored and drowsy while sitting on the riverbank with her elder sister. She then notices a talking, clothed White Rabbit with a pocket watch run past. She follows it down a rabbit hole when suddenly she falls a long way to a curious hall with many locked doors of all sizes. She finds a small key to a door too small for her to fit through, but through it she sees an attractive garden. She then discovers a bottle on a table labelled "DRINK ME," the contents of which cause her to shrink too small to reach the key which she has left on the table. She eats a cake with "EAT ME" written on it in currants as the chapter closes.

Chapter Two &ndash The Pool of Tears: Chapter Two opens with Alice growing to such a tremendous size her head hits the ceiling. Alice is unhappy and, as she cries, her tears flood the hallway. After shrinking down again due to a fan she had picked up, Alice swims through her own tears and meets a Mouse, who is swimming as well. She tries to make small talk with him in elementary French (thinking he may be a French mouse) but her opening gambit "Où est ma chatte?" ("Where is my cat?") offends the mouse and he tries to escape her.

Chapter Three &ndash The Caucus Race and a Long Tale: The sea of tears becomes crowded with other animals and birds that have been swept away by the rising waters. Alice and the other animals convene on the bank and the question among them is how to get dry again. The Mouse gives them a very dry lecture on William the Conqueror. A Dodo decides that the best thing to dry them off would be a Caucus-Race, which consists of everyone running in a circle with no clear winner. Alice eventually frightens all the animals away, unwittingly, by talking about her (moderately ferocious) cat.

Chapter Four &ndash The Rabbit Sends a Little Bill: The White Rabbit appears again in search of the Duchess's gloves and fan. Mistaking her for his maidservant, Mary Ann, he orders Alice to go into the house and retrieve them, but once she gets inside she starts growing. The horrified Rabbit orders his gardener, Bill the Lizard, to climb on the roof and go down the chimney. Outside, Alice hears the voices of animals that have gathered to gawk at her giant arm. The crowd hurls pebbles at her, which turn into little cakes. Alice eats them, and they reduce her again in size.

Chapter Five &ndash Advice from a Caterpillar: Alice comes upon a mushroom and sitting on it is a blue Caterpillar smoking a hookah. The Caterpillar questions Alice and she admits to her current identity crisis, compounded by her inability to remember a poem. Before crawling away, the caterpillar tells Alice that one side of the mushroom will make her taller and the other side will make her shorter. She breaks off two pieces from the mushroom. One side makes her shrink smaller than ever, while another causes her neck to grow high into the trees, where a pigeon mistakes her for a serpent. With some effort, Alice brings herself back to her normal height. She stumbles upon a small estate and uses the mushroom to reach a more appropriate height.

Chapter Six &ndash Pig and Pepper: A Fish-Footman has an invitation for the Duchess of the house, which he delivers to a Frog-Footman. Alice observes this transaction and, after a perplexing conversation with the frog, lets herself into the house. The Duchess's Cook is throwing dishes and making a soup that has too much pepper, which causes Alice, the Duchess, and her baby (but not the cook or grinning Cheshire Cat) to sneeze violently. Alice is given the baby by the Duchess and to her surprise, the baby turns into a pig. The Cheshire Cat appears in a tree, directing her to the March Hare's house. He disappears but his grin remains behind to float on its own in the air prompting Alice to remark that she has often seen a cat without a grin but never a grin without a cat.

Chapter Seven &ndash A Mad Tea-Party: Alice becomes a guest at a "mad" tea party along with the March Hare, the Hatter, and a very tired Dormouse who falls asleep frequently, only to be violently woken up moments later by the March Hare and the Hatter. The characters give Alice many riddles and stories, including the famous 'Why is a raven like a writing desk?'. The Hatter reveals that they have tea all day because Time has punished him by eternally standing still at 6 pm (tea time). Alice becomes insulted and tired of being bombarded with riddles and she leaves claiming that it was the stupidest tea party that she had ever been to.

Chapter Eight &ndash The Queen's Croquet Ground: Alice leaves the tea party and enters the garden where she comes upon three living playing cards painting the white roses on a rose tree red because The Queen of Hearts hates white roses. A procession of more cards, kings and queens and even the White Rabbit enters the garden. Alice then meets the King and Queen. The Queen, a figure difficult to please, introduces her trademark phrase "Off with his head!" which she utters at the slightest dissatisfaction with a subject. Alice is invited (or some might say ordered) to play a game of croquet with the Queen and the rest of her subjects but the game quickly descends into chaos. Live flamingos are used as mallets and hedgehogs as balls and Alice once again meets the Cheshire Cat. The Queen of Hearts then orders the Cat to be beheaded, only to have her executioner complain that this is impossible since the head is all that can be seen of him. Because the cat belongs to the Duchess, the Queen is prompted to release the Duchess from prison to resolve the matter.

Chapter Nine &ndash The Mock Turtle's Story: The Duchess is brought to the croquet ground at Alice's request. She ruminates on finding morals in everything around her. The Queen of Hearts dismisses her on the threat of execution and she introduces Alice to the Gryphon, who takes her to the Mock Turtle. The Mock Turtle is very sad, even though he has no sorrow. He tries to tell his story about how he used to be a real turtle in school, which the Gryphon interrupts so they can play a game.

Chapter Ten &ndash Lobster Quadrille: The Mock Turtle and the Gryphon dance to the Lobster Quadrille, while Alice recites (rather incorrectly) "'Tis the Voice of the Lobster". The Mock Turtle sings them "Beautiful Soup" during which the Gryphon drags Alice away for an impending trial.

Chapter Eleven &ndash Who Stole the Tarts?: Alice attends a trial whereby the Knave of Hearts is accused of stealing the Queen's tarts. The jury is composed of various animals, including Bill the Lizard, the White Rabbit is the court's trumpeter, and the judge is the King of Hearts. During the proceedings, Alice finds that she is steadily growing larger. The dormouse scolds Alice and tells her she has no right to grow at such a rapid pace and take up all the air. Alice scoffs and calls the dormouse's accusation ridiculous because everyone grows and she cannot help it. Meanwhile, witnesses at the trial include the Hatter, who displeases and frustrates the King through his indirect answers to the questioning, and the Duchess's cook.

Chapter Twelve &ndash Alice's Evidence: Alice is then called up as a witness. She accidentally knocks over the jury box with the animals inside them and the King orders the animals be placed back into their seats before the trial continues. The King and Queen order Alice to be gone, citing Rule 42 ("All persons more than a mile high to leave the court"), but Alice disputes their judgement and refuses to leave. She argues with the King and Queen of Hearts over the ridiculous proceedings, eventually refusing to hold her tongue. The Queen shouts her familiar "Off with her head!" but Alice is unafraid, calling them out as just a pack of cards just as they start to swarm over her. Alice's sister wakes her up from a dream, brushing what turns out to be some leaves and not a shower of playing cards from Alice's face. Alice leaves her sister on the bank to imagine all the curious happenings for herself.

Origins of Through the Looking Glass

The opening scene

The opening scene in “Through the Looking-Glass” in which Alice ponders about the behaviour of her kittens, reflects a paragraph from an article in Blackwood’s Magazine, published in November 1846 (Tillotson, 1950):

‘It was the kitten that began it, and not the cat. It isn’t any use saying it was the cat, because I was there, and I saw it and know it and if I don’t know it, how should anybody else be able to tell you about it, if you please? So I say again it was the kitten that began it, and the way it all happened was this.

‘There was a little bit, a small tiny string of blue worsted-no! I am wrong, for when I think again the string was pink-which was hanging down from a little ball that lay on the lap of a tall dark girl with lustrous eyes, who was looking into the fire as intently as if she expected to see a salamander in
the middle of it. [Meanwhile Huggs the old cat is watching through half-shut eyes] the movements of a smart little kitten [playing with a roll of paper, which pricks it]. And then the kitten put on a look of importance,
as if its feelings had been injured in the nicest points, and then walked up demurely to Huggs, and began to pat her whiskers, as if it wanted, which it probably did, to tell her all about it.’

[There follows a long game with the worsted, the tall girl’s annoyance, and the intervention, in defence of the cat and against the kitten, of ‘a little child’ sitting on the other side of the fire.]

The Red Queen

When Carroll described his Red Queen in the article ‘Alice on the Stage‘, he described her as “formal and strict, yet not unkindly pedantric to the tenth degree, the concentrated essences of all governesses”. Also, in earlier editions of the book, the Red Queen was being described as “She’s one of the thorny kind”. In later editions this was changed to “She’s one of the kind that has nine spikes, you know”, which referred to the spikes on a queen’s crown. Carroll may have decided to remove an in-joke: the Red Queen being the governess of the Liddell sisters, Miss Prickett. She was nicknamed “Pricks”.

The Rose and a Violet

The Rose and a Violet that Alice meets in the Garden of Live Flowers may refer two her two younger sisters, named Rhoda and Violet (Hunt, 69).

“It’s my opinion that you never think at all,” the Rose said, in a rather severe tone.
“I never saw anybody that looked stupider,” a Violet said, so suddenly, that Alice quite jumped for it hadn’t spoken before.

Jam tomorrow and jam yesterday

`You couldn’t have it if you did want it,’ the Queen said. `The rule is, jam to-morrow and jam yesterday — but never jam to-day.’
`It must come sometimes to “jam do-day,”‘ Alice objected.
`No, it can’t,’ said the Queen. `It’s jam every other day: to-day isn’t any other day, you know.’

In this passage, Carroll may be playing with the Latin word ‘iam’. The letters i and j are interchangeable in classic Latin. ‘Iam’ means now. This word is used in the past and future tense, but in the present tense the word for ‘now’ is ‘nunc’. So because you can never use ‘iam’ in the present, you’ll never have ‘jam to-day’!

It may also have to do with a second definition of the word ‘jam’. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, ‘jam’ does not only refer to the fruit spread for bread, but can also mean someting more figuratively: ‘something good or sweet, esp. with allusion to the use of sweets to hide the disagreeable taste of medicine … something pleasant promised or expected for the future, esp. something that one never receives’ (Jylkka).

The railway carriage

Apparently, the passage about Alice travelling by railway carriage used to contain an old lady. Carroll dropped her from the chapter after he received a letter from Tenniel on June 1, 1870, in which he made the following suggestion:

“I think that when the jump occurs in the railway scene you might very well make Alice lay hold of the goat’s beard as being the object nearest to her hand – instead of the old lady’s hair. The jerk would actually throw them together.

Railway jokes

There are two jokes in the railway scene that may be missed if you don’t know the English phrases they are based on. “She must be labeled ‘Lass, with care'” refers to the fact that packages containing glass objects are commonly labeled ‘Glass, with care’. The line “She must go by post, as she’s got a head on her” refers to the fact that ‘head’ was a Victorian slang word, meaning postage stamp (as stamps had the head of the monarch on them) (Gardner, “Anniversary edition”).


In Looking Glass world Alice encounters a snap-dragon-fly, who’s body is made of plum-pudding, its wings of holly-leaves, and its head is a raisin burning in brandy. He makes his nest in a Christmas box.

This may seem a strange description, but it refers to ‘snapdragon’ a parlour game played at Christmas time in which children would try to ‘snatch raisins out of a dish of burning brandy and eat them while still alight’ (Jylkka).

Bread and butter

According to the American Edwin Marsden, some children are being taught to wisper ‘bread and butter, bread and butter’ whenever being circled by a wasp, bee, or other insect, to prevent getting stung. If this was also a customary in Victorian England, it may explain why the White Queen whispers this phrase when the is being scared by the monstrous crow.

The Old Sheep Shop

In ‘Through the Looking Glass’ Alice meets an old, knitting sheep in a shop. There was (and is) an actual shop in Oxford on which that part of the story was based.

In Carroll’s time, it was a candy shop and Alice often went there to buy sweets. The woman who owned the shop at the time was old, had a very bleaty voice and was always knitting. That may be why Carroll changed her into a knitting sheep.

Tenniel’s image of the shop shows it mirrored – after all, Alice went through the looking glass!

The sudden change of the shop into a river may be inspired by the occasional flooding of Oxford. The shop was one of the buildings prone to flooding. In December 1852, while Carroll was an Oxford undergraduate, there was a particularly severe flood. According to the London Illustrated News, there were numerous drowned carcasses, including those of sheep. (O’Connor).

Nowadays the shop is a souvenir shop, where you can buy lots of Alice in Wonderland things. You can find it at 83 Saint Aldgate’s Street, Oxford, which is directly across Christ Church.

The eggs from the Old Sheep Shop

The Sheep in Through the Looking Glass tells Alice that if she buys two eggs, she has to eat them both. Alice decides to buy only one, for ‘they mightn’t be at all nice’. Undergraduates at Christ Church, in Carroll’s day, insisted that if you ordered one boiled egg for breakfast you usually received two, one good and one bad (Carroll, “Diaries” 176).

The Anglo-Saxon messengers

The messengers of the White King in ‘Through the Looking Glass’, Haigha and Hatta, are the Mad Hatter and the March Hare from ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’. The Anglo-Saxon name ‘Haigha’ is pronounced as “Hayor”, which makes it sound like ‘hare’.

In his account of the Kings Messengers’ approach (Through the Looking Glass), Carroll was poking fun at the very earnest Anglo-Saxon scholarship practiced at Oxford in his day, and both his and Tenniel’s renderings of the Messengers’ costume and ‘attitudes’ were almost certainly taken from one of the Anglo-Saxon manuscripts in Oxford’s Bodleian Library the Caedmon Manuscript of the Junian codex.

Many of the words in ‘Jabberwocky’ are also related to Anglo-Saxon ones (Gardner, “The Annotated Alice” 279).

Magic tricks

Lewis Carroll had a fondness for amateur magic, and therefore references to magic tricks may have been added to the ‘Alice’ books. The Sheep’s standing up of eggs in the chapter “Wool and Water” was a common conjuring trick of the time. Also, Haigha’s extraction of a sandwich from his bag was a variation of the so-called Egg Bag Trick (Fisher 81).

“There’s glory for you!”

Wilbur Gaffney argues that Humpty Dumpty’s definition of ‘glory’ (“a nice knock-down argument”) may have been derived from a passage in a book from philosopher Thomas Hobbes (1599-1679):

“Sudden glory, is the passion which maketh those grimaces called LAUGHTER and is caused either by some sudden act of their own, that pleaseth them [such as, obviously, coming out with a nice knock-down argument] or by the apprehension of some deformed thing in another, by comparison whereof they suddenly applaud themselves.”

“I love my love with an H”

‘I love my love with an A’ was a popular parlor game in the Victorian time. The players recited the following lines:

“I love my love with an <A> because he’s: ….
I hate him because he’s: …
He took me to the Sign of the: …
And treated me with: …
His name’s: …
And he lives at: …”

At the end of each line the player had to make up a word beginning with the A, then the following player with a B, etc., until a player was unable to come up with a word. The wording of the lines varied (Gardner, “Anniversary edition”).

The White Knight

The White Knight represents Dodgson himself. This can be derived from the description (‘shaggy hair’, ‘gentle face and large mild eyes’), his many inventions, and his melancholy song. Also, on the underside of a hand-drawn game board Carroll once wrote: “Olive Butler, from the White Knight”, thereby identifying himself as the Knight (Stern), and when Carroll wrote “Isa’s Visit to Oxford” in 1888, he called himself ‘the Aged, Aged Man’, abbreviated as ‘the A.A.M.’ (Guiliano).

Therefore, when the White Knight says good-bye to Alice, who is going to become a Queen, Dodgson might be saying good-bye to Alice who is going to become a grown woman.

The leg of mutton

Carroll often parodied Victorian etiquette. An example is the scene in which Alice is being introduced to the Leg of Mutton:

“You look a little shy. Let me introduce you to that leg of mutton,” said the Red
Queen. “Alice–Mutton: Mutton–Alice.”
The mutton got up in the dish and made a little bow to Alice and Alice returned the bow, not knowing whether to be frightened or amused.
“May I give you a slice?” she said, taking up the knife and fork and looking from one Queen to the other.
“Certainly not,” the Red Queen said very decidedly: “it isn’t etiquette to cut anyone you’ve been introduced to.”

One of the numerous rules which governed a proper Victorian lady’s behavior was the admonition against “cutting.” According to one etiquette guide, “A Lady should never ‘cut’ someone, that is to say, fail to acknowledge their presence after encountering them socially, unless it is absolutely necessary”.

Clearly, Carroll is poking fun at etiquette here both through the punning of the term “to cut” as well as the ridiculous bowing of the leg of mutton (Lim).

The date of Through the Looking Glass

We can guess the date when the story ‘Through the Looking Glass’ took place.

In the first chapter Alice says that ‘tomorrow’ there’ll be a bonfire. That means that it is November 4, one day before Guy Fawkes Day. This holiday was annually celebrated at Christ Church with a huge bonfire in Peckwater Quadrangle. Alice also tells the White Queen that she’s ‘seven and a half exactly’, so the continuation probably takes place a half year after the first story, which was dated on May 4th, and as the real Alice was born in 1852, the year must be 1859 (Gardner, “The Annotated Alice”).

'Alice's Adventures Under Ground', the original manuscript version of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

A treasured early manuscript version of one of the most famous and enduring children&rsquos stories, Alice&rsquos Adventures in Wonderland.

What inspired the story?

Reverend Charles Dodgson, later to be known by his pen name Lewis Carroll, was a mathematics tutor at Christ Church, Oxford. In 1856 he became friends with Henry Liddell, the new Dean of the college, and his family. Dodgson&rsquos friendship with the Liddell children would lead him to create one of the most successful children's books ever.

The story was first told to Alice Liddell and her sisters, Lorina and Edith, on a trip down the river on 4 July 1862. During the trip Charles Dodgson told the girls a story that featured a bored little girl named Alice who goes looking for an adventure. The children enjoyed the story so much that Alice asked Dodgson to write it down for her. On 26 November 1864, Dodgson presented Alice with this manuscript as &ldquoA Christmas Gift to a Dear Child in Memory of a Summer's Day&rdquo.

Written in sepia-coloured ink, it includes 37 pen and ink illustrations (and a coloured title page). Dodgson was unsatisfied with some of the illustrations. In one place he pasted a photograph of Alice (he was a keen photographer) over a drawing of her instead. The original drawing would not be seen again until it was uncovered in 1977. The photograph is now attached to a paper flap, enabling readers to see the illustration underneath, which you can see here in images 92 and 93.

Under Ground to Wonderland?

Dodgson was encouraged by friends to publish his manuscript so that everyone could enjoy it. Before he did so he made some changes to the story and expanded the 15,500-word original to 27,500 words. He removed some of the family references included for the amusement of the Liddell children and added new characters. The most notable new additions were the episodes about the Cheshire Cat and the Mad Hatter's Tea Party.

He also sought out the artist John Tenniel to create the illustrations. Some of Tenniel&rsquos illustrations, such as Alice swimming in a &lsquopool of tears&rsquo, were based on Dodgson&rsquos own drawings. Others, mostly of new characters such as the Hatter and the March Hare, were his own creation. The story was published in 1865 under the new title Alice&rsquos Adventures in Wonderland.

Since then it has never been out of print! It has been translated into nearly 100 languages and remains popular across the world.

What happened to the manuscript and how did it end up at the British Library?

Alice Liddell treasured the manuscript until 1928, but was then forced to sell it to pay death duties after the death of her husband. The manuscript was sold at auction at Sotheby&rsquos for £15,000 to an American dealer, Dr Rosenbach. He in turn sold it to Eldridge Johnson upon returning to America. Following Johnson&rsquos death in 1946 the manuscript was again sold at auction. This time, however, it was purchased by a wealthy group of American benefactors, who donated the manuscript to the British Museum in 1948. The return of this important work to the British people was a token of gratitude for Britain's stand against Adolf Hitler during World War Two.

To see more of Alice's Adventures Under Ground please go to our award winning Turning the Pages&trade.


Alice was beginning to get very tired of sitting by her sister on the bank, and of having nothing to do: once or twice she had peeped into the book her sister was reading, but it had no pictures or conversations in it, and where is the use of a book, thought Alice, without pictures or conversations? So she was considering in her own mind, (as well as she could, for the hot day made her feel very sleepy and stupid,) whether the pleasure of making a daisy-chain was worth the trouble of getting up and picking the daisies, when a white rabbit with pink eyes ran close by her.

There was nothing very remarkable in that, nor did Alice think it so very much out of the way to hear the rabbit say to itself &ldquodear, dear! I shall be too late!" (when she thought it over afterwards, it occurred to her that she ought to have wondered at this, but at the time it all seemed quite natural) but when the rabbit actually took a watch out of its waistcoat-pocket, looked at it, and then hurried on, Alice started to her feet, for

it flashed across her mind that she had never before seen a rabbit with either a waistcoat-pocket or a watch to take out of it, and, full of curiosity, she hurried across the field after it, and was just in time to see it pop down a large rabbit-hole under the hedge. In a moment down went Alice after it, never once considering how in the world she was to get out again.

The rabbit-hole went straight on like a tunnel for some way, and then dipped suddenly down, so suddenly, that Alice had not a moment to think about stopping herself, before she found herself falling down what seemed a deep well. Either the well was very deep, or she fell very slowly, for she had plenty of time as she went down to look about her, and to wonder what would happen next. First, she tried to look down and make out what she was coming to, but it was too dark to see anything: then, she looked at the sides of the well, and noticed that they were filled with cupboards and book-shelves: here and there were maps and pictures hung on pegs. She took a jar down off one of the shelves as she passed: it was labelled

&ldquoOrange Marmalade," but to her great disappointment it was empty: she did not like to drop the jar, for fear of killing somebody underneath, so managed to put it into one of the cupboards as she fell past it.

&ldquoWell!" thought Alice to herself, &ldquoafter such a fall as this, I shall think nothing of tumbling down stairs! How brave they'll all think me at home! Why, I wouldn't say anything about it, even if I fell off the top of the house!" (which was most likely true.)

Down, down, down. Would the fall never come to an end? &ldquoI wonder how many miles I've fallen by this time?" said she aloud, &ldquoI must be getting somewhere near the centre of the earth. Let me see: that would be four thousand miles down, I think-" (for you see Alice had learnt several things of this sort in her lessons in the schoolroom, and though this was not a very good opportunity of showing off her knowledge, as there was no one to hear her, still it was good practice to say it over,) &ldquoyes, that's the right distance, but then what Longitude or Latitude-line shall I be in?" (Alice had no idea

what Longitude was, or Latitude either, but she thought they were nice grand words to say.)

Down, down, down: there was nothing else to do, so Alice soon began talking again. &ldquoDinah will miss me very much tonight, I should think!" (Dinah was the cat.) &ldquoI hope they'll remember her saucer of milk at tea-time! Oh, dear Dinah, I wish I had you here! There are no mice in the air, I'm afraid, but you might catch a bat, and that's very like a mouse, you know, my dear. But do cats eat bats, I wonder?" And here Alice began to get rather sleepy, and kept on saying to herself, in a dreamy sort of way &ldquodo cats eat bats? do cats eat bats?" and sometimes,

Alice was not a bit hurt, and jumped on to her feet directly: she looked up, but it was all dark overhead before her was another long passage, and the white rabbit was still in sight, hurrying down it. There was not a moment to be lost: away went Alice like the wind, and just heard it say, as it turned a corner, &ldquomy ears and whiskers, how late it's getting!" She turned the corner after it, and instantly found herself in a long, low hall, lit up by a row of lamps which hung from the roof.

There were doors all round the hall, but they were all locked, and when Alice had been all round it, and tried them all, she walked sadly down the middle, wondering

how she was ever to get out again: suddenly she came upon a little three-legged table, all made of solid glass there was nothing lying upon it, but a tiny golden key, and Alice's first idea was that it might belong to one of the doors of the hall, but alas! either the locks were too large, or the key too small, but at any rate it would open none of them. However, on the second time round, she came to a low curtain, behind which was a door about eighteen inches high: she tried the little key in the keyhole, and it fitted! Alice opened the door, and looked down a small passage, not larger than a rat-hole, into the loveliest garden you ever saw. How she longed to get out of that dark hall, and wander about among those beds of bright flowers and those cool fountains, but she could not even get her head through the doorway, &ldquoand even if my head would go through," thought poor Alice, &ldquoit would be very little use without my shoulders. Oh, how I wish I could shut

up like a telescope! I think I could, if I only knew how to begin." For, you see, so many out-of-the-way things had happened lately, that Alice began to think very few things indeed were really impossible.

It was all very well to say &ldquodrink me&rdquo, &ldquobut I'll look first," said the wise little Alice, &ldquoand see whether the bottle's marked &ldquopoison&rdquo or not," for Alice had read several nice little stories about children that got burnt, and eaten up by wild beasts, and other unpleasant things, because they would not remember the simple rules their friends had given them, such as, that, if you get into the fire, it will burn you, and that, if you cut your finger very deeply with a knife, it generally bleeds, and

However, this bottle was not marked poison, so Alice tasted it, and finding it very nice, (it had, in fact, a sort of mixed flavour of cherry-tart, custard, pine-apple, roast turkey, toffy, and hot buttered toast,) she very soon finished it off. **************************

&ldquoWhat a curious feeling!" said Alice, &ldquoI must be shutting up like a telescope."

It was so indeed: she was now only ten inches high, and her face brightened up as it occurred to her that she was now the right size for going through the little door into that lovely garden. First, however, she waited for a few minutes to see whether she was going to shrink any further: she felt a little nervous about this, &ldquofor it might end, you know," said Alice to herself, &ldquoin my going out altogether, like a candle, and what should I be like then, I wonder?" and she tried to fancy what the flame of a candle is like after the candle is blown out,

for she could not remember having ever seen one. However, nothing more happened, so she decided on going into the garden at once, but, alas for poor Alice! when she got to the door, she found she had forgotten the little golden key, and when she went back to the table for the key, she found she could not possibly reach it: she could see it plainly enough through the glass, and she tried her best to climb up one of the legs of the table, but it was too slippery, and when she had tired herself out with trying, the poor little thing sat down and cried. &ldquoCome! there's no use in crying!" said Alice to herself rather sharply, &ldquoI advise you to leave off this minute!" (she generally gave herself very good advice, and sometimes scolded herself so severely as to bring tears into her eyes, and once she remembered boxing her own ears for having been unkind to herself

in a game of croquet she was playing with herself, for this curious child was very fond of pretending to be two people,) &ldquobut it's no use now," thought poor Alice, &ldquoto pretend to be two people! Why, there's hardly enough of me left to make one respectable person!"

Soon her eyes fell on a little ebony box lying under the table: she opened it, and found in it a very small cake, on which was lying a card with the words EAT ME beautifully printed on it in large letters. &ldquoI'll eat," said Alice, &ldquoand if it makes me larger, I can reach the key, and if it makes me smaller, I can creep under the door, so either way I'll get into the garden, and I don't care which happens!"

She ate a little bit, and said anxiously to herself, &ldquowhich way? which way?" and laid her hand on the top of her head to feel which way it was growing, and was quite surprised to find that she remained the same size: to be sure this is what generally happens when one eats cake, but Alice had got into the way of expecting nothing but out-of-the way things to happen, and it seemed

quite dull and stupid for things to go on in the common way.

So she set to work, and very soon finished off the cake.

***************************** &ldquoCuriouser and curiouser!" cried Alice, (she was so surprised that she quite forgot how to speak good English,) &ldquonow I'm opening out like the largest telescope that ever was! Goodbye, feet!" (for when she looked down at her feet, they seemed almost out of sight, they were getting so far off,) &ldquooh, my poor little feet, I wonder who will put on your shoes and stockings for you now, dears? I'm sure I can't! I shall be a great deal too far off to bother myself about you: you must manage the best way you can-but I must be kind to them&rdquo, thought Alice, &ldquoor perhaps they won't walk the way I want to go! Let me see: I'll give them a new pair of boots every Christmas."

And she went on planning to herself how she would manage it:

&ldquothey must go by the carrier," she thought, &ldquoand how funny it'll seem, sending presents to one's own feet! And how odd the directions will look! ALICE'S RIGHT FOOT, ESQ. THE CARPET, with ALICE'S LOVE oh dear! what nonsense I am talking!"

Just at this moment, her head struck against the roof of the hall: in fact, she was now rather more than nine feet high, and she at once took up the little golden key, and hurried off to the garden door.

Poor Alice! it was as much as she could do, lying down on one side, to look through into the garden with one eye, but to get through was more hopeless than ever: she sat down and cried again.

&ldquoYou ought to be ashamed of yourself," said Alice, &ldquoa great girl like you," (she might well say this,) &ldquoto cry in this way! Stop this instant, I tell you!" But she cried on all the same, shedding gallons of tears, until there was a large pool, about four inches deep, all round her, and reaching half way across the hall. After a time, she heard a little pattering of feet in the distance, and

dried her eyes to see what was coming. It was the white rabbit coming back again, splendidly dressed, with a pair of white kid gloves in one hand, and a nosegay in the other. Alice was ready to ask help of any one, she felt so desperate, and as the rabbit passed her, she said, in a low, timid voice, &ldquoIf you please, Sir-" the rabbit started violently, looked up once into the roof of the hall, from which the voice seemed to come, and then dropped the nosegay and the white kid gloves, and skurried away into the darkness as hard as it could go.

Alice took up the nosegay and gloves, and found the nosegay so delicious that she kept smelling at it all the time she went on talking to herself-&ldquodear, dear! how queer everything is today! and yesterday everything happened just as usual: I wonder if I was changed in the night? Let me think: was I the same when I got up this morning? I think I remember

feeling rather different. But if I'm not the same, who in the world am I? Ah, that's the great puzzle!" And she began thinking over all the children she knew of the same age as herself, to see if she could have been changed for any of them.

&ldquoI'm sure I'm not Gertrude," she said, &ldquofor her hair goes in such long ringlets, and mine doesn't go in ringlets at all-and I'm sure I can't be Florence, for I know all sorts of things, and she, oh! she knows such a very little! Besides, she's she, and I'm I, and-oh dear! how puzzling it all is! I'll try if I know all the things I used to know. Let me see: four times five is twelve, and four times six is thirteen, and four times seven is fourteen-oh dear! I shall never get to twenty at this rate! But the Multiplication Table don't signify-let's try Geography. London is the capital of France, and Rome is the capital of Yorkshire, and Paris-oh dear! dear! that's all wrong, I'm certain! I must have been changed for Florence! I'll try and say &ldquoHow doth the little&rdquo," and she crossed her hands on her

lap, and began, but her voice sounded hoarse and strange and the words did not sound the same as they used to do:

How doth the little crocodile

Improve its shining tail,

And pour the waters of the Nile

On every golden scale!

How cheerfully it seems to grin!

How neatly spreads its claws!

And welcomes little fishes in

With gently-smiling jaws!"

&ldquoI'm sure those are not the right words," said poor Alice, and her eyes filled with tears as she thought &ldquoI must be Florence after all, and I shall have to go and live in that poky little house, and have next to no toys to play with, and oh! ever so many lessons to learn! No! I've made up my mind about it: if I'm Florence, I'll stay down here! It'll be no use their putting their heads down and saying 'come up, dear!' I shall only look up and say

As she said this, she looked down at her hands, and was surprised to find she had put on one of the rabbit's little gloves while she was talking. &ldquoHow can I have done that?" thought she, &ldquoI must be growing small again." She got up and went to the table to measure herself by it, and found that, as nearly as she could guess, she was now about two feet high, and was going on shrinking rapidly: soon she found out that the reason of it was the nosegay she held in her hand: she dropped it hastily, just in time to save herself from shrinking away altogether, and found that she was now only three inches high.

&ldquoNow for the garden!" cried Alice,

as she hurried back to the little door,
but the little door was locked again, and
the little gold key was lying on the glass
table as before, and &ldquothings are worse
than ever!" thought the poor little girl,
&ldquofor I never was as small as this before, never! And I declare it's too bad, it is!"
At this moment
her foot slipped,
and splash! she
was up to her chin
in salt water. Her
first idea was
that she had
fallen into the
sea: then she
remembered that
she was under
ground, and she
soon made out that it was the pool of tears she
had wept when she was nine feet high. &ldquoI wish I
hadn't cried so much! said Alice, as she
swam about, trying to find her way out, &ldquoI
shall be punished for it now, I suppose, by
being drowned in my own tears! Well! that'll

be a queer thing, to be sure! However, every thing is queer today." Very soon she saw something splashing about in the pool near her: at first she thought it must be a walrus or a hippopotamus, but then she remembered how small she was herself, and soon made out that it was only a mouse, that had slipped in like herself.

&ldquoWould it be any use, now," thought Alice, &ldquoto speak to this mouse? The rabbit is something quite out-of-the-way, no doubt, and so have I been, ever since I came down here, but that is no reason why the mouse should not be able to talk. I think I may as well try."

So she began: &ldquooh Mouse, do you know how to get out of this pool? I am very tired of swimming about here, oh Mouse!" The mouse looked at her rather inquisitively, and seemed to her to wink with one of its little eyes, but it said nothing.

Perhaps it doesn't understand English," thought Alice &ldquoI daresay it's a French mouse, come over with William the Conqueror!" (for,

with all her knowledge of history, Alice had no very clear notion how long ago anything had happened,) so she began again: &ldquooù est ma chatte?" which was the first sentence out of her French lesson-book. The mouse gave a sudden jump in the pool, and seemed to quiver with fright: &ldquooh, I beg your pardon!" cried Alice hastily, afraid that she had hurt the poor animal's feelings, &ldquoI quite forgot you didn't like cats!"

&ldquoNot like cats!" cried the mouse, in a shrill, passionate voice, &ldquowould you like cats if you were me?"

&ldquoWell, perhaps not," said Alice in a soothing tone, &ldquodon't be angry about it. And yet I wish I could show you our cat Dinah: I think you'd take a fancy to cats if you could only see her. She is such a dear quiet thing," said Alice, half to herself as she swam lazily about in the pool, &ldquoshe sits purring so nicely by the fire, licking her paws and washing her face: and she is such a nice soft thing to nurse, and she's such a capital one for catching mice-oh! I beg your pardon!" cried poor Alice

again, for this time the mouse was bristling all over, and she felt certain that it was really offended, &ldquohave I offended you?"

&ldquoOffended indeed!" cried the mouse, who seemed to be positively trembling with rage, &ldquoour family always hated cats! Nasty, low, vulgar things! Don't talk to me about them any more!"

&ldquoI won't indeed!" said Alice, in a great hurry to change the conversation, &ldquoare you-are you-fond of-dogs?" The mouse did not answer, so Alice went on eagerly: &ldquothere is such a nice little dog near our house I should like to show you! A little bright-eyed terrier, you know, with oh! such long curly brown hair! And it'll fetch things when you throw them, and it'll sit up and beg for its dinner, and all sorts of things-I can't remember half of them-and it belongs to a farmer, and he says it kills all the rats and-oh dear!" said Alice sadly, &ldquoI'm afraid I've offended it again!" for the mouse was swimming away from her as hard as it could go, and making quite a commotion in the pool as it went.

So she called softly after it: &ldquomouse dear! Do come back again, and we won't talk about cats and dogs any more, if you don't like them!" When the mouse heard this, it turned and swam slowly back to her: its face was quite pale, (with passion, Alice thought,) and it said in a trembling low voice &ldquolet's get to the shore, and then I'll tell you my history, and you'll understand why it is I hate cats and dogs."

It was high time to go, for the pool was getting quite full of birds and animals that had fallen into it. There was a Duck and a Dodo, a Lory and an Eaglet, and several other curious creatures. Alice led the way, and the whole party swam to the shore.

They were indeed a curious looking party that assembled on the bank-the birds with draggled feathers, the animals with their fur clinging close to them-all dripping wet, cross, and uncomfortable. The first question of course was, how to get dry: they had a consultation about this, and Alice hardly felt at all surprised at finding herself talking familiarly with the birds, as if she had known them all her life. Indeed, she had quite a long argument with the Lory, who at last turned sulky, and would only say &ldquoI am older than you, and must know best," and this Alice would not admit without knowing how old the Lory was, and as the Lory positively refused to tell its age, there was nothing more to be said.
At last the mouse, who seemed to have some authority among them, called out &ldquosit down, all of you, and attend to me! I'll soon make you dry enough!" They all sat down at once, shivering, in a large ring, Alice in the middle, with her eyes anxiously fixed on the mouse, for she felt sure she would catch a bad cold if she did not get dry very soon.

&ldquoAhem!" said the mouse, with a self-important air, &ldquoare you all ready? This is the driest thing I know. Silence all round, if you please!

&ldquoWilliam the Conqueror, whose cause was favoured by the pope, was soon submitted to by the English, who wanted leaders, and had been of late much accustomed to usurpation and conquest. Edwin and Morcar, the earls of Mercia and Northumbria-"

&ldquoUgh!" said the Lory with a shiver.

&ldquoI beg your pardon?" said the mouse, frowning, but very politely, &ldquodid you speak?"

&ldquoNot I!" said the Lory hastily.

&ldquoI thought you did," said the mouse, &ldquoI proceed. Edwin and Morcar, the earls of Mercia and Northumbria, declared for him

and even Stigand, the patriotic archbishop of Canterbury, found it advisable to go with Edgar Atheling to meet William and offer him the crown. William's conduct was at first moderate-how are you getting on now, dear?" said the mouse, turning to Alice as it spoke.

&ldquoAs wet as ever," said poor Alice, &ldquoit doesn't seem to dry me at all."

&ldquoIn that case," said the Dodo solemnly, rising to his feet, &ldquoI move that the meeting adjourn, for the immediate adoption of more energetic remedies-"

&ldquoSpeak English!" said the Duck, &ldquoI don't know the meaning of half of those long words, and what's more, I don't believe you do either!" And the Duck quacked a comfortable laugh to itself. Some of the other birds tittered audibly.

&ldquoI only meant to say," said the Dodo in a rather offended tone, &ldquothat I know of a house near here, where we could get the young Lady and the rest of the party dried, and then we could listen comfortably to the story which I think you were good enough to promise to tell us," bowing gravely to the mouse.

The mouse made no objection to this, and the whole party moved along the river bank, (for the pool had by this time begun to flow out of the hall, and the edge of it was fringed with rushes and forget-me-nots,) in a slow procession, the Dodo leading the way. After a time the Dodo became impatient, and, leaving the Duck to bring up the rest of the party, moved on at a quicker pace with Alice, the Lory, and the Eaglet, and soon brought them to a little cottage, and there they sat snugly by the fire, wrapped up in blankets, until the rest of the party had arrived, and they were all dry again.

Then they all sat down again in a large ring on the bank, and begged the mouse to begin his story.

&ldquoMine is a long and a sad tale!" said the mouse, turning to Alice, and sighing.

&ldquoIt is a long tail, certainly," said Alice, looking down with wonder at the mouse's tail, which was coiled nearly all round the party, &ldquobut why do you call it sad?" and she went on puzzling about this as the mouse went on speaking, so that her idea of the tale was something like this:

We lived beneath the mat Warm and snug and fat But one woe, & that Was the cat! To our joys a clog, In our eyes a fog, On our hearts a log Was the dog! When the cat's away, Then the mice will play, But, alas! one day, (So they say) Came the dog and cat, Hunting for a rat, Crushed the mice all flat, Each one as he sat Underneath the mat warm, & snug, & fat-Think of that!
&ldquoYou are not attending!" said the mouse to Alice severely, &ldquowhat are you thinking of?"

&ldquoI beg your pardon," said Alice very humbly, &ldquoyou had got to the fifth bend, I think?"

&ldquoI had not!" cried the mouse, sharply and very angrily.

&ldquoA knot!" said Alice, always ready to make herself useful, and looking anxiously about her, &ldquooh, do let me help to undo it!"

&ldquoI shall do nothing of the sort!" said the mouse, getting up and walking away from the party, &ldquoyou insult me by talking such nonsense!"

&ldquoI didn't mean it!" pleaded poor Alice, &ldquobut you're so easily offended, you know."

The mouse only growled in reply.

&ldquoPlease come back and finish your story!" Alice called after it, and the others all joined in chorus &ldquoyes, please do!" but the mouse only shook its ears, and walked quickly away, and was soon out of sight.

&ldquoWhat a pity it wouldn't stay!" sighed the Lory, and an old Crab took the opportunity of saying to its daughter &ldquoAh, my dear!

let this be a lesson to you never to lose your temper!" &ldquoHold your tongue, Ma!" said the young Crab, a little snappishly, &ldquoyou're enough to try the patience of an oyster!"

&ldquoI wish I had our Dinah here, I know I do!" said Alice aloud, addressing no one in particular, &ldquoshe'd soon fetch it back!"

&ldquoAnd who is Dinah, if I might venture to ask the question?" said the Lory.

Alice replied eagerly, for she was always ready to talk about her pet, &ldquoDinah's our cat. And she's such a capital one for catching mice, you can't think! And oh! I wish you could see her after the birds! Why, she'll eat a little bird as soon as look at it!"

This answer caused a remarkable sensation among the party: some of the birds hurried off at once one old magpie began wrapping itself up very carefully, remarking &ldquoI really must be getting home: the night air does not suit my throat," and a canary called out in a trembling voice to its children &ldquocome away from her, my dears, she's no fit company for you!" On various pretexts, they all moved off, and Alice was soon left alone.

She sat for some while sorrowful and silent, but she was not long before she recovered her spirits, and began talking to herself again as usual: &ldquoI do wish some of them had stayed a little longer! and I was getting to be such friends with them-really the Lory and I were almost like sisters! and so was that dear little Eaglet! And then the Duck and the Dodo! How nicely the Duck sang to us as we came along through the water: and if the Dodo hadn't known the way to that nice little cottage, I don't know when we should have got dry again-" and there is no knowing how long she might have prattled on in this way, if she had not suddenly caught the sound of pattering feet.

It was the white rabbit, trotting slowly back again, and looking anxiously about it as it went, as if it had lost something, and she heard it muttering to itself &ldquothe Marchioness! the Marchioness! oh my dear paws! oh my fur and whiskers! She'll have me executed, as sure as ferrets

are ferrets! Where can I have dropped them, I wonder?" Alice guessed in a moment that it was looking for the nosegay and the pair of white kid gloves, and she began hunting for them, but they were now nowhere to be seen-everything seemed to have changed since her swim in the pool, and her walk along the river-bank with its fringe of rushes and forget-me-nots, and the glass table and the little door had vanished.

Soon the rabbit noticed Alice, as she stood looking curiously about her and at once said in a quick angry tone, &ldquowhy, Mary Ann! what are you doing out here? Go home this moment, and look on my dressing-table for my gloves and nosegay, and fetch them here, as quick as you can run, do you hear?" and Alice was so much frightened that she ran off at once, without

saying a word, in the direction which the rabbit had pointed out.

She soon found herself in front of a neat little house, on the door of which was a bright brass plate with the name W. RABBIT, ESQ. She went in, and hurried upstairs, for fear she should meet the real Mary Ann and be turned out of the house before she had found the gloves: she knew that one pair had been lost in the hall, &ldquobut of course," thought Alice, &ldquoit has plenty more of them in its house. How queer it seems to be going messages for a rabbit! I suppose Dinah'll be sending me messages next!" And she began fancying the sort of things that would happen: &ldquoMiss Alice! come here directly and get ready for your walk!" &ldquoComing in a minute, nurse! but I've got to watch this mousehole till Dinah comes back, and see that the mouse doesn't get out-" &ldquoonly I don't think," Alice went on, &ldquothat they'd let Dinah stop in the house, if it began ordering people about like that!"

By this time she had found her way into a tidy little room, with a table in the window on which was a looking-glass and, (as Alice had hoped,) two or three pairs of tiny white kid gloves: she took up a pair of gloves, and was just going to leave the room, when her eye fell upon a little bottle that stood near the looking-glass: there was no label on it this time with the words &ldquodrink me&rdquo, but nevertheless she uncorked it and put it to her lips: &ldquoI know something interesting is sure to happen," she said to herself, &ldquowhenever I eat or drink anything, so I'll see what this bottle does. I do hope it'll make me grow larger, for I'm quite tired of being such a tiny little thing!"

It did so indeed, and much sooner

than she expected: before she had drunk half the bottle, she found her head pressing against the ceiling, and she stooped to save her neck from being broken, and hastily put down the bottle, saying to herself &ldquothat's quite enough-I hope I shan't grow any more-I wish I hadn't drunk so much!" Alas! it was too late: she went on growing and growing, and very soon had to kneel down: in another minute there was not room even for this, and she tried the effect of lying down, with one elbow against the door, and the other arm curled round her head. Still she went on growing, and as a last resource she put one arm out of the window, and one foot up the chimney, and said to herself &ldquonow I can do no more-what will become of me?"

Luckily for Alice, the little magic bottle had now had its full effect, and she grew no larger: still it was very uncomfortable, and as there seemed to be no sort of chance of ever getting out of the room again, no wonder she felt unhappy. &ldquoIt was much pleasanter at home," thought poor Alice, &ldquowhen one wasn't always growing larger and smaller, and being ordered about by mice and rabbits-I almost wish I hadn't gone down that rabbit-hole, and yet, and yet-it's rather curious, you know, this sort of life. I do wonder what can have happened to me! When I used to read fairy-tales, I fancied that sort of thing never happened, and now here I am in the middle of one! There ought to be a book written about me, that there ought! and when I grow up I'll write one-but I'm grown up now&rdquo said she in a sorrowful tone, &ldquoat least there's no room to grow up any more here."

&ldquoBut then," thought Alice, &ldquoshall I never get any older than I am now? That'll

be a comfort, one way-never to be an old woman-but then-always to have lessons to learn! Oh, I shouldn't like that!"

&ldquoOh, you foolish Alice!" she said again, &ldquohow can you learn lessons in here? Why, there's hardly room for you, and no room at all for any lesson-books!"

And so she went on, taking first one side, and then the other, and making quite a conversation of it altogether, but after a few minutes she heard a voice outside, which made her stop to listen.

&ldquoMary Ann! Mary Ann!" said the voice, &ldquofetch me my gloves this moment!" Then came a little pattering of feet on the stairs: Alice knew it was the rabbit coming to look for her, and she trembled till she shook the house, quite forgetting that she was now about a thousand times as large as the rabbit, and had no reason to be afraid of it. Presently the rabbit came to the door, and tried to open it, but as it opened inwards, and Alice's elbow was against it, the attempt proved a failure. Alice heard it

say to itself &ldquothen I'll go round and get in at the window."

&ldquoThat you won't!" thought Alice, and, after waiting till she fancied she heard the rabbit just under the window, she suddenly spread out her hand, and made a snatch in the air. She did not get hold of anything, but she heard a little shriek and a fall and a crash of breaking glass, from which she concluded that it was just possible it had fallen into a cucumber-frame, or something of the sort.

Next came an angry voice-the rabbit's-&ldquoPat, Pat! where are you?" And then a voice she had never heard before, &ldquoshure then I'm here! digging for apples, anyway, yer honour!"

&ldquoDigging for apples indeed!" said the rabbit angrily, &ldquohere, come and help me

out of this!"-Sound of more breaking glass.

&ldquoNow, tell me, Pat, what is that coming out of the window?"

&ldquoShure it's an arm, yer honour!" (He pronounced it &ldquoarrum&rdquo.)

&ldquoAn arm, you goose! Who ever saw an arm that size? Why, it fills the whole window, don't you see?"

&ldquoShure, it does, yer honour, but it's an arm for all that."

&ldquoWell, it's no business there: go and take it away!"

There was a long silence after this, and Alice could only hear whispers now and then, such as &ldquoshure I don't like it, yer honour, at all at all!" &ldquodo as I tell you, you coward!" and at last she spread out her hand again and made another snatch in the air. This time there were two little shrieks, and more breaking glass-" what a number of cucumber-frames there much be!" thought Alice, &ldquoI wonder what they'll do next! As for pulling me out of the window, I only wish they could! I'm sure I don't want to stop in here any longer!"

She waited for some time without

hearing anything more: at last came a rumbling of little cart-wheels, and the sound of a good many voices all talking together: she made out the words &ldquowhere's the other ladder?-why, I hadn't to bring but one, Bill's got the other-here, put 'em up at this corner-no, tie 'em together first-they don't reach high enough yet-oh, they'll do well enough, don't be particular-here, Bill! catch hold of this rope-will the roof bear?-mind that loose slate-oh, it's coming down! heads below!-" (a loud crash) &ldquonow, who did that?-it was Bill, I fancy-who's to go down the chimney?-nay, I shan't! you do it!-that I won't then-Bill's got to go down-here, Bill! the master says you've to go down the chimney!"

&ldquoOh, so Bill's got to come down the chimney, has he?" said Alice to herself, &ldquowhy, they seem to put everything upon Bill! I wouldn't be in Bill's place for a good deal: the fireplace is a pretty tight one, but I think I can kick a little!"

She drew her foot as far down the chimney as she could, and waited till she

heard a little animal (she couldn't guess what sort it was) scratching and scrambling in the chimney close above her: then, saying to herself &ldquothis is Bill&rdquo, she gave one sharp kick, and waited again to see what would happen next.

The first thing was a general chorus of &ldquothere goes Bill!" then the rabbit's voice alone &ldquocatch him, you by the hedge!" then silence, and then another confusion of voices, &ldquohow was it, old fellow? what happened to you? tell us all about it."

Last came a little feeble squeaking voice, (&ldquothat's Bill&rdquo thought Alice,) which said &ldquowell, I hardly know-I'm all of a fluster myself-something comes at me like a Jack-in-the-box, and the next minute up I goes like a rocket!" &ldquoAnd so you did, old fellow!" said the other voices.

&ldquoWe must burn the house down!" said the voice of the rabbit, and Alice called out as loud as she could &ldquoif you do, I'll set Dinah at you!" This caused silence again, and while Alice was thinking &ldquobut how can I get Dinah here?" she found to her great delight that she was getting smaller: very soon she was able to get up out of the uncomfortable position in which she had been lying, and in two or three minutes more she was once more three inches high.

She ran out of the house as quick as she could, and found quite a crowd of little animals waiting outside-guinea-pigs, white mice, squirrels, and &ldquoBill&rdquo a little green lizard, that was being supported in the arms of one of the guinea-pigs, while another was giving it something out of a bottle. They all made a rush at her the moment she appeared, but Alice ran her hardest, and soon found herself in a thick wood.

&ldquoThe first thing I've got to do," said Alice to herself, as she wandered about in the wood, &ldquois to grow to my right size, and the second thing is to find my way into that lovely garden. I think that will be the best plan." It sounded an excellent plan, no doubt, and very neatly and simply arranged: the only difficulty was, that she had not the smallest idea how to set about it, and while she was peering anxiously among the trees round her, a little sharp bark just over her head made her look up in a great hurry.

An enormous puppy was looking down at her with large round eyes, and feebly stretching out one paw, trying to reach her: &ldquopoor thing!" said Alice in a coaxing tone,

and she tried hard to whistle to it, but she was terribly alarmed all the while at the thought that it might be hungry, in which case it would probably devour her in spite of all her coaxing. Hardly knowing what she did, she picked up a little bit of stick, and held it out to the puppy: whereupon the puppy jumped into the air off all its feet at once, and with a yelp of delight rushed at the stick, and made believe to worry it: then Alice dodged behind a great thistle to keep herself from being run over, and, the moment she appeared at the other side, the puppy made another dart at the stick, and tumbled head over heels in its hurry to get hold: then Alice, thinking it was very like having a game of play with a cart-horse, and expecting every moment to be trampled under its feet, ran round the thistle again: then the puppy began a series of short charges at the stick, running a very little way forwards each time and a long way back, and barking hoarsely all the while, till at last it sat down a good way off, panting, with its tongue hanging out of its mouth, and its great eyes half shut.

This seemed to Alice a good opportunity for making her escape: she set off at once, and ran till the puppy's bark sounded quite faint in the distance, and till she was quite tired and out of breath.

&ldquoAnd yet what a dear little puppy it was!" said Alice, as she leant against a buttercup to rest herself, and fanned herself with her hat, &ldquoI should have liked teaching it tricks, if-if I'd only been the right size to do it! Oh! I'd nearly forgotten that I've got to grow up again! Let me see: how is it to be managed? I suppose I ought to eat or drink something or other, but the great question is, what?"

The great question certainly was, what? Alice looked all round her at the flowers and the blades of grass, but could not see anything that looked like the right thing to eat under the circumstances. There was a large mushroom near her, about the same height as herself, and when she had looked under it, and on both sides of it, and behind it, it occurred to her to look and see what was on the top of it.

She stretched herself up on tiptoe, and peeped over the edge of the mushroom,

and her eyes immediately met those of a large blue caterpillar, which was sitting with its arms folded, quietly smoking a long hookah, and taking not the least notice of her or of anything else. For some time they looked at each other in silence: at last the caterpillar took the hookah out of its mouth, and languidly addressed her.

&ldquoWho are you?" said the caterpillar. This was not an encouraging opening for a conversation: Alice replied rather shyly, &ldquoI-I hardly know, sir, just at present-at least I know who I was when I got up this morning, but I think I must have been changed several times since that."

&ldquoWhat do you mean by that?" said the caterpillar, &ldquoexplain yourself!"

&ldquoI can't explain myself, I'm afraid, sir,"

said Alice, &ldquobecause I'm not myself, you see."

&ldquoI don't see," said the caterpillar.

&ldquoI'm afraid I can't put it more clearly," Alice replied very politely, &ldquofor I can't understand it myself, and really to be so many different sizes in one day is very confusing."

&ldquoIt isn't," said the caterpillar.

&ldquoWell, perhaps you haven't found it so yet," said Alice, &ldquobut when you have to turn into a chrysalis, you know, and then after that into a butterfly, I should think it'll feel a little queer, don't you think so?"

&ldquoNot a bit," said the caterpillar.

&ldquoAll I know is," said Alice, &ldquoit would feel queer to me."

&ldquoYou!" said the caterpillar contemptuously, &ldquowho are you?"

Which brought them back again to the beginning of the conversation: Alice felt a little irritated at the caterpillar making such very short remarks, and she drew herself up and said very gravely &ldquoI think you ought to tell me who you are, first."

Here was another puzzling question:

and as Alice had no reason ready, and the caterpillar seemed to be in a very bad temper, she turned round and walked away.

&ldquoCome back!" the caterpillar called after her, &ldquoI've something important to say!"

This sounded promising: Alice turned and came back again.

&ldquoKeep your temper," said the caterpillar.

&ldquoIs that all?" said Alice, swallowing down her anger as well as she could.

Alice thought she might as well wait, as she had nothing else to do, and perhaps after all the caterpillar might tell her something worth hearing. For some minutes it puffed away at its hookah without speaking, but at last it unfolded its arms, took the hookah out of its mouth again, and said &ldquoso you think you're changed, do you?"

&ldquoYes, sir," said Alice, &ldquoI can't remember the things I used to know-I've tried to say &ldquoHow doth the little busy bee&rdquo and it came all different!"

&ldquoTry and repeat &ldquoYou are old, father William&rdquo," said the caterpillar.

Alice folded her hands, and began:

1. &ldquoYou are old, father William," the young man said,

&ldquoAnd your hair is exceedingly white:

And yet you incessantly stand on your head-

Do you think, at your age, it is right?"

2. &ldquoIn my youth," father William replied to his son,

&ldquoI feared it might injure the brain

But now that I'm perfectly sure I have none,

Why, I do it again and again."

3. &ldquoYou are old," said the youth, &ldquoas I mentioned before,

&ldquoAnd have grown most uncommonly fat:

Yet you turned a back-somersault in at the door -

Pray what is the reason of that?"

4. &ldquoIn my youth," said the sage, as he shook his gray locks,

&ldquoI kept all my limbs very supple.

By the use of this ointment, five shillings the box -

Allow me to sell you a couple."

5. &ldquoYou are old," said the youth, &ldquoand your jaws are too weak

&ldquoFor anything tougher than suet:

Yet you eat all the goose, with the bones and the beak -

Pray, how did you manage to do it?"

6. &ldquoIn my youth," said the old man, &ldquoI took to the law,

And argued each case with my wife,

And the muscular strength, which it gave to my jaw,

Has lasted the rest of my life."

7. &ldquoYou are old," said the youth, &ldquoone would hardly suppose

&ldquoThat your eye was as steady as ever:

Yet you balanced an eel on the end of your nose -

What made you so awfully clever?"

8. &ldquoI have answered three questions, and that is enough,

Said his father, &ldquodon't give yourself airs!

&ldquoDo you think I can listen all day to such stuff?

Be off, or I'll kick you downstairs!"

&ldquoThat is not said right," said the caterpillar.

&ldquoNot quite right, I'm afraid," said Alice timidly, &ldquosome of the words have got altered."

&ldquoIt is wrong from beginning to end," said the caterpillar decidedly, and there was silence for some minutes: the caterpillar was the first to speak.

&ldquoWhat size do you want to be?" it asked.

&ldquoOh, I'm not particular as to size," Alice hastily replied, &ldquoonly one doesn't like changing so often, you know."

&ldquoAre you content now?" said the caterpillar.

&ldquoWell, I should like to be a little larger, sir, if you wouldn't mind," said Alice, &ldquothree inches is such a wretched height to be."

&ldquoIt is a very good height indeed!" said the caterpillar loudly and angrily, rearing itself straight up as it spoke (it was exactly three inches high).

&ldquoBut I'm not used to it!" pleaded poor Alice in a piteous tone, and she thought to herself &ldquoI wish the creatures wouldn't be so easily offended!"

&ldquoYou'll get used to it in time," said the caterpillar, and it put the hookah into its mouth, and began smoking again.

This time Alice waited quietly until it chose to speak again: in a few minutes the caterpillar took the hookah out of its mouth, and got down off the mushroom, and crawled away into the grass, merely remarking as it went: &ldquothe top will make you grow taller, and the stalk will make you grow shorter."

&ldquoThe top of what? the stalk of what?" thought Alice.

&ldquoOf the mushroom," said the caterpillar, just as if she had asked it aloud, and in another moment it was out of sight.

Alice remained looking thoughtfully at the mushroom for a minute, and then picked it and carefully broke it in two, taking the stalk in one hand and the top in the other. &ldquoWhich does the stalk do?" she said, and nibbled a little bit of it to try: the next moment she felt a violent blow on her chin: it had struck her foot!

She was a good deal frightened by this very sudden change, but as she did not shrink any further, and had not dropped the top of the mushroom, she did not give up hope yet. There was hardly room to open her mouth, with her chin pressing against her foot, but she did it at last, and managed to bite off a little bit of the top of the mushroom.

&ldquoCome! my head's free at last!" said Alice in a tone of delight, which changed into alarm in another moment, when she found that her shoulders were nowhere to be seen: she looked down upon an immense length of neck, which seemed to rise like a stalk out of a sea of green leaves that lay far below her.

&ldquoWhat can all that green stuff be?" said Alice, &ldquoand where have my shoulders got to? And oh! my poor hands! how is it I can't see you?" She was moving them about as she spoke, but no result seemed to follow, except a little rustling among the leaves. Then she tried to bring her head down to her hands, and was delighted to find that her neck would bend about easily in every direction, like a serpent. She had just succeeded in bending it down in a beautiful zig-zag, and was going to dive in among the leaves, which she found to be the tops of the trees of the wood she had been wandering in, when a sharp hiss made her draw back: a large pigeon had flown into her face, and was violently beating her with its wings.

&ldquoSerpent!" screamed the pigeon.

&ldquoI'm not a serpent!" said Alice indignantly, &ldquolet me alone!"

&ldquoI've tried every way!" the pigeon said desperately, with a kind of sob: &ldquonothing seems to suit 'em!"

&ldquoI haven't the least idea what you mean," said Alice.

&ldquoI've tried the roots of trees, and I've tried banks, and I've tried hedges," the pigeon went on without attending to her, &ldquobut them serpents! There's no pleasing 'em!"

Alice was more and more puzzled, but she thought there was no use in saying anything till the pigeon had finished.

&ldquoAs if it wasn't trouble enough hatching the eggs!" said the pigeon, &ldquowithout being on the look out for serpents, day and night! Why, I haven't had a wink of sleep these three weeks!"

&ldquoI'm very sorry you've been annoyed," said Alice, beginning to see its meaning.

&ldquoAnd just as I'd taken the highest tree in the wood," said the pigeon raising its voice to a shriek, &ldquoand was just thinking I was free of 'em at last, they must needs come down from the sky! Ugh! Serpent!"

&ldquoBut I'm not a serpent," said Alice, &ldquoI'm a- I'm a-"

&ldquoWell! What are you?" said the pigeon, &ldquoI see you're trying to invent something."

&ldquoI- I'm a little girl," said Alice, rather doubtfully, as she remembered the number of changes she had gone through.

&ldquoA likely story indeed!" said the pigeon, &ldquoI've seen a good many of them in my time, but never one with such a neck as yours! No, you're a serpent, I know that well enough! I suppose you'll tell me next that you never tasted an egg!"

&ldquoI have tasted eggs, certainly," said Alice, who was a very truthful child, &ldquobut indeed I don't want any of yours. I don't like them raw."

&ldquoWell, be off, then!" said the pigeon, and settled down into its nest again. Alice crouched down among the trees, as well as she could, as her neck kept getting entangled among the branches, and several times she had to stop and untwist it. Soon she remembered the pieces of mushroom which she still held in her hands, and set to work very carefully, nibbling first at one and then at the other, and growing sometimes taller and sometimes shorter, until she had succeeded in bringing herself down to her usual size.

It was so long since she had been of the right size that it felt quite strange

at first, but she got quite used to it in a minute or two, and began talking to herself as usual: &ldquowell! there's half my plan done now! How puzzling all these changes are! I'm never sure what I'm going to be, from one minute to another! However, I've got to my right size again: the next thing is, to get into that beautiful garden-how is that to be done, I wonder?"

Just as she said this, she noticed that one of the trees had a doorway leading right into it. &ldquoThat's very curious!" she thought, &ldquobut everything's curious today: I may as well go in." And in she went.

Once more she found herself in the long hall, and close to the little glass table: &ldquonow, I'll manage better this time&rdquo she said to herself, and began by taking the little golden key, and unlocking the door that led into the garden. Then she set to work eating the pieces of mushroom till she was about fifteen inches high: then she walked down the little passage: and then- she found herself at last in the beautiful garden, among the bright flowerbeds and the cool fountains.

A large rose tree stood near the entrance of the garden: the roses on it were white, but there were three gardeners at it, busily painting them red. This Alice thought a very curious thing, and she went near to watch them, and just as she came up she heard one of them say &ldquolook out, Five! Don't go splashing paint over me like that!"

&ldquoI couldn't help it," said Five in a sulky tone, &ldquoSeven jogged my elbow."

On which Seven lifted up his head and said &ldquothat's right, Five! Always lay the blame on others!"

&ldquoYou'd better not talk!" said Five, &ldquoI

heard the Queen say only yesterday she thought of having you beheaded!"

&ldquoWhat for?" said the one who had spoken first.

&ldquoThat's not your business, Two!" said Seven.

&ldquoYes, it is his business!" said Five, &ldquoand I'll tell him: it was for bringing tulip-roots to the cook instead of potatoes."

Seven flung down his brush, and had just begun &ldquowell! Of all the unjust things-" when his eye fell upon Alice, and he stopped suddenly: the others looked round, and all of them took off their hats and bowed low.

&ldquoWould you tell me, please," said Alice timidly, &ldquowhy you are painting those roses?"

Five and Seven looked at Two, but said nothing: Two began, in a low voice, &ldquowhy, Miss, the fact is, this ought to have been a red rose tree, and we put a white one in by mistake, and if the Queen was to find it out, we should all have our heads cut off. So, you see, we're doing our best, before she comes, to-" At this moment Five, who had been looking anxiously across the garden called out &ldquothe Queen! the Queen!" and

the three gardeners instantly threw themselves flat upon their faces. There was a sound of many footsteps, and Alice looked round, eager to see the Queen.

the Queen said severely &ldquowho is this?" She said it to the Knave of Hearts, who only bowed and smiled in reply.

&ldquoIdiot!" said the Queen, turning up her nose, and asked Alice &ldquowhat's your name?"

&ldquoMy name is Alice, so please your Majesty," said Alice boldly, for she thought to herself, &ldquowhy, they're only a pack of cards! I needn't be afraid of them!"

&ldquoWho are these?" said the Queen, pointing to the three gardeners lying round the rose tree, for, as they were lying on their faces, and the pattern on their backs was the same as the rest of the pack, she could not tell whether they were gardeners, or soldiers, or courtiers, or three of her own children.

&ldquoHow should I know?" said Alice, surprised at her own courage, &ldquoit's no business of mine."

The Queen turned crimson with fury, and, after glaring at her for a minute, began in a voice of thunder, &ldquooff with her-"

&ldquoNonsense!" said Alice, very loudly and decidedly, and the Queen was silent.

The King laid his hand upon her arm, and said timidly &ldquoremember my dear! She is only a child!"

The Queen turned angrily away from him, and said to the Knave &ldquoturn them over!"

The Knave did so, very carefully, with one foot.

&ldquoGet up!" said the Queen, in a shrill loud voice, and the three gardeners instantly jumped up, and began bowing to the King, the Queen, the Royal children, and everybody else.

&ldquoLeave off that!" screamed the Queen, &ldquoyou make me giddy." And then, turning to the rose tree, she went on &ldquowhat have you been doing here?"

&ldquoMay it please your Majesty," said Two very humbly, going down on one knee as he spoke, &ldquowe were trying-"

&ldquoI see!" said the Queen, who had meantime been examining the roses, &ldquooff with their heads!" and the procession moved on, three of the soldiers remaining behind to execute the three unfortunate gardeners, who ran to Alice for protection.

&ldquoYou shan't be beheaded!" said Alice, and she put them into her pocket: the three soldiers marched once round her, looking for them, and then quietly marched off after the others.

&ldquoAre their heads off?" shouted the Queen.

&ldquoTheir heads are gone," the soldiers shouted in reply, &ldquoif it please your Majesty!"

&ldquoThat's right!" shouted the Queen, &ldquocan you play croquet?"

The soldiers were silent, and looked at Alice, as the question was evidently meant for her.

&ldquoYes!" shouted Alice at the top of her voice.

&ldquoCome on then!" roared the Queen, and Alice joined the procession, wondering very much what would happen next.

&ldquoIt's- it's a very fine day!" said a timid little voice: she was walking by the white rabbit, who was peeping anxiously into her face.

&ldquoVery," said Alice, &ldquowhere's the Marchioness?"

&ldquoHush, hush!" said the rabbit in a low voice, &ldquoshe'll hear you. The Queen's the Marchioness: didn't you know that?"

&ldquoNo, I didn't," said Alice, &ldquowhat of?"

&ldquoQueen of Hearts," said the rabbit in a whisper, putting its mouth close to her ear, &ldquoand Marchioness of Mock Turtles."

&ldquoWhat are they?" said Alice, but there was no time for the answer, for they had reached the croquet-ground, and the game began instantly.

Alice thought she had never seen such a curious croquet-ground in all her life: it was all in ridges and furrows: the croquet-balls were live hedgehogs, the mallets live ostriches, and the soldiers had to double themselves up, and stand

on their feet and hands, to make the arches.

The chief difficulty which Alice found at first was to manage her ostrich: she got its body tucked away, comfortably enough, under her arm, with its legs hanging down, but generally, just as she had got its neck straightened out nicely, and was going to give a blow with its head, it would twist itself round, and look up into her face, with such a puzzled expression that she could not help bursting out laughing: and when she had got its head down, and was going to begin again, it was very confusing to find that the hedgehog had unrolled itself, and was in the act of crawling away: besides all this, there was generally a ridge or a furrow in her way, wherever she wanted to send the hedgehog to, and as the doubled-up soldiers were always getting up and walking off to other

parts of the ground, Alice soon came to the conclusion that it was a very difficult game indeed.

The players all played at once without waiting for turns, and quarrelled all the while at the tops of their voices, and in a very few minutes the Queen was in a furious passion, and went stamping about and shouting &ldquooff with his head!" or &ldquooff with her head!" about once in a minute. All those whom she sentenced were taken into custody by the soldiers, who of course had to leave off being arches to do this, so that, by the end of half an hour or so, there were no arches left, and all the players, except the King, the Queen, and Alice, were in custody, and under sentence of execution.

Then the Queen left off, quite out of breath, and said to Alice &ldquohave you seen the Mock Turtle?"

&ldquoNo," said Alice, &ldquoI don't even know what a Mock Turtle is."

&ldquoCome on then," said the Queen, &ldquoand it shall tell you its history."

As they walked off together, Alice heard the King say in a low voice, to the company generally, &ldquoyou are all pardoned."

&ldquoCome, that's a good thing!" thought Alice, who had felt quite grieved at the number of

executions which the Queen had ordered.

They very soon came upon a Gryphon, which lay fast asleep in the sun: (if you don't know what a Gryphon is, look at the picture): &ldquoup, lazy thing!" said the Queen, &ldquoand take this young lady to see the Mock Turtle, and to hear its history. I must go back and see after some executions I ordered," and she walked off, leaving Alice with the Gryphon. Alice did not quite like the look of the creature, but on the whole she thought it quite as safe to stay as to go after that savage Queen: so she waited.

The Gryphon sat up and rubbed its eyes: then it watched the Queen till she was out of sight: then it chuckled, &ldquoWhat fun!" said the Gryphon, half to itself, half to Alice.

&ldquoWhat is the fun?" said Alice.

&ldquoWhy, she," said the Gryphon &ldquoit's all her fancy, that: they never executes nobody, you know: come on!"

&ldquoEverybody says 'come on!' here," thought Alice, as she walked slowly after the Gryphon &ldquoI never was ordered about so before in all my life-never!"

They had not gone far before they saw the Mock Turtle in the distance, sitting sad and lonely on a little ledge of rock, and, as they came nearer, Alice could hear it sighing as if its heart would break. She pitied it deeply: &ldquowhat is its sorrow?" she asked the Gryphon, and the Gryphon answered, very nearly in the same words as before, &ldquoit's all its fancy, that: it hasn't got no sorrow, you know: come on!"

So they went up to the Mock Turtle, who looked at them with large eyes full of tears, but said nothing.

&ldquoThis here young lady&rdquo said the Gryphon,

&ldquowants for to know your history, she do."

So they sat down, and no one spoke for some minutes: Alice thought to herself &ldquoI don't see how it can ever finish, if it doesn't begin," but she waited patiently.

&ldquoOnce," said the Mock Turtle at last, with a deep sigh, &ldquoI was a real Turtle."

These words were followed by a very long silence, broken only by an occasional exclamation of &ldquohjckrrh!" from the Gryphon, and the constant heavy sobbing of the Mock Turtle. Alice was very nearly getting up and saying, &ldquothank you, sir, for your interesting story," but she could not help thinking there must be more to come, so she sat still and said nothing.

&ldquoWhen we were little," the Mock Turtle went on, more calmly, though still sobbing a little now and then, &ldquowe went to school in the sea. The master was an old Turtle-we used to call him Tortoise-"

&ldquoWhy did you call him Tortoise, if he wasn't one?" asked Alice

&ldquoYou ought to be ashamed of yourself for asking such a simple question," added the Gryphon, and then they both sat silent and looked at poor Alice, who felt ready to sink into the earth: at last the Gryphon said to the Mock Turtle, &ldquoget on, old fellow! Don't be all day!" and the Mock Turtle went on in these words:

&ldquoYou may not have lived much under the sea-" (&ldquoI haven't," said Alice,) &ldquoand perhaps you were never even introduced to a lobster-" (Alice began to say &ldquoI once tasted-" but hastily checked herself, and said &ldquono, never," instead,) &ldquoso you can have no idea what a delightful thing a Lobster Quadrille is!"

&ldquoNo, indeed, said Alice, &ldquowhat sort of a thing is it?"

&ldquoWhy," said the Gryphon, &ldquoyou form into a line along the sea shore-"

&ldquoTwo lines!" cried the Mock Turtle, &ldquoseals, turtles, salmon, and so on-advance twice:-"

&ldquoEach with a lobster as partner!" cried the Gryphon.

&ldquoOf course," the Mock Turtle said, &ldquoadvance twice, set to partners-"

&ldquoChange lobsters, and retire in same order-" interrupted the Gryphon.

&ldquoThen, you know," continued the Mock Turtle, &ldquoyou throw the-"

&ldquoThe lobsters!" shouted the Gryphon, with a bound into the air.

&ldquoAs far out to sea as you can-"

&ldquoSwim after them!" screamed the Gryphon.

&ldquoTurn a somersault in the sea!" cried the Mock Turtle, capering wildly about.

&ldquoChange lobsters again!" yelled the Gryphon at the top of its voice, &ldquoand then-"

&ldquoThat's all," said the Mock Turtle, suddenly dropping its voice, and the two creatures, who had been jumping about like mad things all this time, sat down again very sadly and quietly, and looked at Alice.

&ldquoIt must be a very pretty dance," said Alice timidly.

&ldquoWould you like to see a little of it?" said the Mock Turtle.

&ldquoVery much indeed," said Alice.

&ldquoCome, let's try the first figure!" said the Mock Turtle to the Gryphon, &ldquowe can do

it without lobsters, you know. Which shall sing?"

&ldquoOh! you sing!" said the Gryphon, &ldquoI've forgotten the words."

So they began solemnly dancing round and round Alice, every now and then treading on her toes when they came too close, and waving their fore-paws to mark the time, while the Mock Turtle sang, slowly and sadly, these words:

&ldquoBeneath the waters of the sea

Are lobsters thick as thick can be -

They love to dance with you and me,

My own, my gentle Salmon!"

&ldquoSalmon come up! Salmon go down!

Salmon come twist your tail around!

Of all the fishes of the sea

There's none so good as Salmon!"

&ldquoShall we try the second figure?" said the Gryphon, or would you prefer a song?"

&ldquoOh, a song, please!" Alice replied, so eagerly, that the Gryphon said, in a rather offended tone, &ldquohm! no accounting for tastes! Sing her 'Mock Turtle Soup', will you, old fellow!"

The Mock Turtle sighed deeply, and began, in a voice sometimes choked with sobs, to sing this:

&ldquoBeautiful Soup, so rich and green,

Who for such dainties would not stoop?

Soup of the evening, beautiful

Soup! Soup of the evening, beautiful Soup!

&ldquoChorus again!" cried the Gryphon, and

he Mock Turtle had just begun to repeat it, when a cry of &ldquothe trial's beginning!" was heard in the distance.

&ldquoCome on!" cried the Gryphon, and, taking Alice by the hand, he hurried off, without waiting for the end of the song.

&ldquoWhat trial is it?" panted Alice as she ran, but the Gryphon only answered &ldquocome on!" and ran the faster, and more and more faintly came, borne on the breeze that followed them, the melancholy words:

The King and Queen were seated on their throne when they arrived, with a great crowd assembled around them: the Knave was in custody: and before the King stood the white rabbit, with a trumpet in one hand, and a scroll of parchment in the other.

&ldquoHerald! read the accusation!" said the King.

On this the white rabbit blew three blasts on the trumpet, and then unrolled the parchment scroll, and read as follows:

&ldquoThe Queen of Hearts she made some tarts

The Knave of Hearts he stole those tarts,

&ldquoNow for the evidence," said the King, &ldquoand then the sentence."

&ldquoNo!" said the Queen, &ldquofirst the sentence, and then the evidence!"

&ldquoNonsense!" cried Alice, so loudly that everybody jumped, &ldquothe idea of having the sentence first!"

&ldquoHold your tongue!" said the Queen.

&ldquoI won't!" said Alice, &ldquoyou're nothing but a pack of cards! Who cares for you?"

At this the whole pack rose up into the air, and came flying down upon her: she gave a little scream of fright, and tried to beat them off, and found herself lying on the bank, with her head in the lap of her sister, who was gently brushing away some leaves that had fluttered down from the trees on to her face.

&ldquoOh, I've had such a curious dream!" said Alice, and she told her sister all her Adventures Under Ground, as you have read them, and when she had finished, her sister kissed her and said &ldquoit was a curious dream, dear, certainly! But now run in to your tea: it's getting late."

So Alice ran off, thinking while she ran (as well she might) what a wonderful dream it had been.

But her sister sat there some while longer, watching the setting sun, and thinking of little Alice and her Adventures, till she too began dreaming after a fashion, and this was her dream:

She saw an ancient city, and a quiet river winding near it along the plain, and up the stream went slowly gliding a boat with a merry party of children on board-she could hear their voices and laughter like music over the water-and among them was another little Alice, who sat listening with bright eager eyes to a tale that was being told, and she listened for the words of the tale, and lo! it was the dream

of her own little sister. So the boat wound slowly along, beneath the bright summer-day, with its merry crew and its music of voices and laughter, till it passed round one of the many turnings of the stream, and she saw it no more.

Then she thought, (in a dream within the dream, as it were,) how this same little Alice would, in the after-time, be herself a grown woman: and how she would keep, through her riper years, the simple and loving heart of her childhood and how she would gather around her other little children, and make their eyes bright and eager with many a wonderful tale, perhaps even with these very adventures of the little Alice of long-ago: and how she would feel with all their simple sorrows, and find a pleasure in all their simple joys, remembering her own child-life, and the happy summer days

of her own little sister. So the boat wound slowly along, beneath the bright summer-day, with its merry crew and its music of voices and laughter, till it passed round one of the many turnings of the stream, and she saw it no more.

Then she thought, (in a dream within the dream, as it were,) how this same little Alice would, in the after-time, be herself a grown woman: and how she would keep, through her riper years, the simple and loving heart of her childhood and how she would gather around her other little children, and make their eyes bright and eager with many a wonderful tale, perhaps even with these very adventures of the little Alice of long-ago: and how she would feel with all their simple sorrows, and find a pleasure in all their simple joys, remembering her own child-life, and the happy summer days

26/11/1862: Bản thảo ‘Alice in Wonderland’ được gửi làm quà Giáng sinh

Vào ngày này năm 1862, giáo sư toán của trường Oxford, Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, đã gửi một bản thảo viết tay có tên Alice’s Adventures Under Ground cho cô bé 10 tuổi Alice Liddell.

Anh chàng Dodgson 30 tuổi, được biết đến nhiều hơn với bút danh Lewis Carroll, đã sáng tác nên câu chuyện trong chuyến dã ngoại với Alice và hai chị gái của cô bé, con của một trong những đồng nghiệp của Dodgson. Là con trai của một người dân quê, Dodgson vốn đã rất xuất sắc trong cả toán học lẫn chơi chữ từ thuở nhỏ, khi còn là một cậu bé thích tự tạo trò chơi cho riêng mình. Tuy nhiên, anh bị mắc chứng nói lắp trầm trọng, ngoại trừ khi nói chuyện với trẻ con.

Thật ra Dodgson có khá nhiều bạn nhỏ thích thú những câu chuyện tuyệt vời của mình: Bọn trẻ nhà Liddell nghĩ rằng câu chuyện về cô gái rơi xuống hố thỏ là một trong những câu chuyện tuyệt vời nhất của anh, và Alice nhất quyết đòi Dodgson viết nó ra.

Trong một lần đến thăm gia đình Liddells, tiểu thuyết gia người Anh Henry Kingsley đã tình cờ để ý đến bản thảo. Sau khi đọc nó, ông đề nghị với bà Liddell rằng nó nên được xuất bản. Dodgson đã bỏ tiền túi để xuất bản cuốn sách, dưới tên Lewis Carroll, vào năm 1865. Câu chuyện là một trong những cuốn sách đầu tiên viết dành riêng cho trẻ em, đơn giản chỉ để giải trí chứ không phải để dạy chúng. Phần tiếp theo của cuốn sách, Through the Looking Glass, được xuất bản vào năm 1871. Các tác phẩm khác của Dodgson, bao gồm tập thơ có tên Phantasmagoria and Other Poems, và một cuốn sách dành cho trẻ em khác, Sylvia và Bruno, thì không nổi tiếng lâu dài như loạt truyện Alice. Dodgson qua đời năm 1898.

7 Facts That Bring Order To The Madness Of 'Alice's Adventures In Wonderland'

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland has, from the beginning, been rather capricious.

“I know who I WAS when I got up this morning, but I think I must have been changed several times since then,” says the young protagonist -- expressing, in that way only a child can, a most profound philosophical concept in the simplest terms.

It’s a statement that's become increasingly applicable to the book itself, as Lewis Carroll’s tale has traveled through various generations and artistic media. In the Tim Burton film adaptation, the original is hardly recognizable beneath gaudy makeup and gaudier special effects. Even the story’s name has warped over time combined with its sequel Through the Looking Glass, the whole tale has been abbreviated to “Alice in Wonderland.”

This year marks the 150th Anniversary of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, for which biographies and articles and exhibitions far and wide have surfaced. Each tracks a different thread of Alice’s fiction or Carroll’s life, dissecting the many times they’ve changed since the “morning” of the book’s publication. Before breakfast, some may believe six impossible things, but we offer you seven real things: little-known insights into that special combination of madness and sanity, maturity and childhood that was Alice.

1. Charles Lutwidge Dodgson was hopeless with names.

The story’s original title was Alice’s Adventures Under Ground, which makes it seem like our adolescent protagonist was headed to meet the Queen of the Mole People -- not the Queen of Hearts. Luckily, Carroll was self-aware enough to question that subterranean phrasing, and he proposed several alternatives to his friend, writer and editor Tom Taylor. Some, like Alice Among Goblins, were even worse, but Carroll luckily settled on the fanciful Wonderland one we have today.

Naming himself was similarly onerous. Born Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, Carroll knew he wanted to adopt a pen name when he published a poem called “Solitude” in 1856. He offered four options to his editor, including the anagrams Edgar Cuthwellis and Edgar U.C. Westhill -- both rejected in favor of the less cumbersome Lewis Carroll. Close call.

2. The story that would become Alice’s Adventures came into being in one day -- and really was about one girl.

It’s not always possible to pinpoint a book’s inception to a single day or person, but with Alice we have that luxury thanks to his extensive journals. On July 4, 1862, Carroll took the young Alice Liddell and her sisters Lorina and Edith on a boating trip. To entertain the girls, he fashioned -- seemingly out of thin air -- a series of adventures in a strange land that featured Alice as its protagonist. (Lorina and Edith were given the less glamorous roles of Lory and the Eaglet.) Thrilled with the stories, the Liddell girls begged Carroll to record the tales in written form. Though it would take two and a half years for Carroll to complete the manuscript as a Christmas present in 1864, its origin can be traced to that single day. In fact, it’s sneakily memorialized in the book’s epigraph:

All in the golden afternoon

For both our oars, with little skill,

By little hands are plied,

While little hands make vain pretence

3. Complex mathematics and Christianity are Caroll's secret characters.

Abstract geometry and the Church of England are probably not the first associations you have with the Alice books. But Carroll’s father, a cleric and then archdeacon, instilled in his eldest son a passion for math and a strict allegiance to Anglican doctrine. Carroll was, by all accounts, a mathematical prodigy, and, despite halfhearted study habits, he managed to acquire an enviable lecture position at Oxford's Christ’s Church. Both these influences subtly make their mark in his writing.

Some critics, for instance, read the tales as Carroll’s rebellion against the constraining social and religious context of Victorian England. Alice battles, after all, against bizarre characters who impose strict, nonsensical rules -- similar to how the skeptic would see orthodox religion. Others have focused on how the book addresses popular mathematical discoveries, such as the “symbolic algebra," a field Carroll found preposterous for its departures from traditional logic. The caterpillar, Hatter, and Hare become irrational proponents of the new math, equating ravens with writing desks, while the Chesire Cat is a reassuring emissary of Euclidean geometry, his smile maintaining the form of an ellipse.

4. Carroll’s relationship with Alice may not have been platonic.

The 150th anniversaries of great books tend not to focus on their negative dimensions, but Carroll’s tale has its sinister side.

Though his writing brought him fame, Carroll’s main artistic preoccupation was photography, for which he set up a studio in his Oxford rooms. Frequently, his subjects were young girls, particularly scantily clad ones. In fact, he wrote in his letters, “one hardly sees why the forms of girls should ever be covered up.” In a sense, he was living a double life: an Oxford mathematician raised in a strict Catholic family, harboring an artistic personality that may have crossed into perverse territory. (Recent biographies, intriguingly, have attempted to normalize this behavior and clear his name.)

Alice Liddell held a unique fixation for Carroll. Her father, Henry Liddell, was the dean of Christ Church, and Carroll had become acquainted with him while photographing the church’s deanery garden in the spring of 1856. Though the exact nature of their relationship is murky -- his diaries from April 1858 to May 1862 are missing -- she played, at the very least, the problematic role of Carroll's much-younger muse. (He was 20 years her senior.) And though Alice’s own writings on the matter reveal no hint of a sexual relationship, there’s something clearly off about the photography. That “golden afternoon” that began the Alice stories may not, it seems, be as pristine as Disney adaptations would have us think.

5. Alice has since become a muse for generations of artists and writers after Carroll -- including Lolita author Vladimir Nabokov.

If the religious, social, and mathematical complexities of Alice weren’t enough to prove that it’s far more than a kid’s book -- take Virginia Woolf’s word for it. “The two Alices are not books for children,” she once said. “They are the only books in which we become children.”

What she meant was that they restore our ability to think creatively. They remind adult readers how even a dystopian world ruled by a heartless Queen of Hearts can become a series of delightful games. Surrealists like André Breton and Salvador Dali also took a special interest in the tale for the way it used dream devices and linguistic puns to evade the barriers of waking logic.

Other writers were struck by the tale’s darker side. Vladimir Nabokov, who translated Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland into Russian, was strongly influenced by Carroll’s books while composing his classic Lolita. Nabokov’s novel recounts how mid-30s Humbert Humbert seduces 12-year-old Lolita, aided by his gift at spinning fabulous, enchanting tales. Sound familiar?

Though the Russian mid-century novelist is famed for denying his artistic sources and inspirations, in this case he was quite candid: “I always call him Lewis Carroll Carroll,” he said, “because he was the first Humbert Humbert.”

6. There are about 20 first editions of the book still in existence -- and only one original manuscript.

The summer is buzzing with sesquicentennial exhibits, but The Morgan Library & Museum has captured the top prize with the original Alice manuscript at the heart of its show “Alice: 150 Years of Wonderland.”

Normally held at the British Museum, the manuscript is making its first appearance in the U.S. since 1982 -- when it was last lent to the Morgan for the 150th Anniversary of Carroll’s birth. Its return has been five years in the making. The exhibit also features two of the remaining 20 first editions and a variety of other Alice memorabilia the Morgan has acquired over the years. Look out for letters, vintage photographs, and merchandise Carroll licensed in the wake of the book’s success.

Note: He was an early proponent of literary branding and tie-ins.

7. Alice's images may be even more important than her words.

Illustrations are an afterthought for most authors, but, as highlighted by the Morgan exhibit, that was never the case for Carroll. He drew 37 pen-and-ink drawings for the original manuscript -- probably why it took him over two years from the sunny boat ride to complete the Christmas present. Although he had a photographer’s eye, he lacked the drawing talent to do justice to the work. So he reached out to Sir John Tenniel, a soon-to-be-famous illustrator at the periodical Punch, who Carroll knew through its editor Tom Taylor. Carroll was fortunate enough to contact Tenniel just before his career took off, and the two worked closely to design the iconic look.

What’s particularly interesting about the images is how they’ve informed later adaptations of the Alice story. Take the first film in 1903. “The directors take some liberties with the narrative, with the storyline,” explained Morgan exhibit curator Carolyn Vega to The Huffington Post, “but what they are fastidious about doing is reproducing Tenniel’s original illustrations, sort of, on film.”

The same is true for the 1951 Disney movie, which plays fast and loose with Carroll’s words, but dares not trespass on the visual aesthetics. Identities, perhaps, can change several times from the morning to afternoon, but Tenniel’s images are decidedly non-capricious.

Alice seemed to know that from the beginning: “What is the use of a book,” she asks, “without pictures or conversation?’”

"Alice: 150 Years of Wonderland" will be run Tuesday-Sunday at The Morgan Library & Museum through October 11, 2015.

Watch the video: Alices Adventures In Wonderland (May 2022).


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