In 1862 Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, a shy Oxford mathematician with a stammer, created a story about a little girl tumbling down a rabbit hole. Thus began the immortal adventures of Alice, perhaps the most popular heroine in English literature. Countless scholars have tried to define the charm of the Alice books–with those wonderfully eccentric characters the Queen of Hearts, Tweedledum, and Tweedledee, the Cheshire Cat, Mock Turtle, the Mad Hatter et al.–by proclaiming that they really comprise a satire on language, a political allegory, a parody of Victorian children’s literature, even a reflection of contemporary ecclesiastical history. Perhaps, as Dodgson might have said, Alice is no more than a dream, a fairy tale about the trials and tribulations of growing up–or down, or all turned round–as seen through the expert eyes of a child.
About the Author
Lewis Carroll is a pseudonym of the Rev. Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, who was born on January 27, 1832, and died on January 14, 1898. His most famous works are Alice's Adventures in Wonderland; its sequel, Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There; and The Hunting of the Snark.
The many works of Sir John Tenniel (1820-1914) include many humorous and political cartoons for Punch and other periodicals of the time, but he is best known for his illustrations of the original editions of Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Class.
“Only Lewis Carroll has shown us the world upside down as a child sees it, and has made us laugh as children laugh.” —Virginia Woolf