Home      Discussion      Topics      Dictionary      Almanac
Signup       Login
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Overview
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (commonly shortened to Alice in Wonderland) is an 1865 novel
English novel
The English novel is an important part of English literature.-Early novels in English:A number of works of literature have each been claimed as the first novel in English. See the article First novel in English.-Romantic novel:...

 written by English author Charles Lutwidge Dodgson under the pseudonym
Pseudonym
A pseudonym is a name that a person assumes for a particular purpose and that differs from his or her original orthonym...

 Lewis Carroll
Lewis Carroll
Charles Lutwidge Dodgson , better known by the pseudonym Lewis Carroll , was an English author, mathematician, logician, Anglican deacon and photographer. His most famous writings are Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and its sequel Through the Looking-Glass, as well as the poems "The Hunting of the...

. It tells of a girl named Alice
Alice (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
Alice is a fictional character in the literary classic, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and its sequel, Through the Looking-Glass, And What Alice Found There. She is a young girl from Victorian-era Britain.-Development:...

 who falls down a rabbit hole into a fantasy world
Fantasy world
A fantasy world is a fictional universe used in fantasy novels and games. Typical worlds involve magic or magical abilities and often, but not always, either a medieval or futuristic theme...

 (Wonderland
Wonderland (fictional country)
Wonderland is the setting for Lewis Carroll's 1865 children's novel Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.-Geography:In the story, Wonderland is located underground, and Alice reaches it by travelling down a rabbit hole, possibly on the banks of the Thames between Folly Bridge and Godstow...

) populated by peculiar, anthropomorphic
Anthropomorphism
Anthropomorphism is any attribution of human characteristics to animals, non-living things, phenomena, material states, objects or abstract concepts, such as organizations, governments, spirits or deities. The term was coined in the mid 1700s...

 creatures. The tale plays with logic
Logic
In philosophy, Logic is the formal systematic study of the principles of valid inference and correct reasoning. Logic is used in most intellectual activities, but is studied primarily in the disciplines of philosophy, mathematics, semantics, and computer science...

, giving the story lasting popularity with adults as well as children. It is considered to be one of the best examples of the literary nonsense
Literary nonsense
Literary nonsense is a broad categorization of literature that uses sensical and nonsensical elements to defy language conventions or logical reasoning...

 genre, and its narrative
Narrative
A narrative is a constructive format that describes a sequence of non-fictional or fictional events. The word derives from the Latin verb narrare, "to recount", and is related to the adjective gnarus, "knowing" or "skilled"...

 course and structure have been enormously influential, especially in the fantasy
Fantasy
Fantasy is a genre of fiction that commonly uses magic and other supernatural phenomena as a primary element of plot, theme, or setting. Many works within the genre take place in imaginary worlds where magic is common...

 genre.


Chapter 1 – Down the Rabbit Hole: Alice
Alice (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
Alice is a fictional character in the literary classic, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and its sequel, Through the Looking-Glass, And What Alice Found There. She is a young girl from Victorian-era Britain.-Development:...

 is feeling bored while sitting on the riverbank with her sister, when she notices a talking, clothed White Rabbit
White Rabbit
The White Rabbit works for the Red Queen, but is also a secret member of the Underland Underground Resistance, and was sent by the Hatter to search for Alice...

 with a pocket watch run past.
Discussion
Ask a question about 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland'
Start a new discussion about 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland'
Answer questions from other users
Full Discussion Forum
 
Quotations

All in the golden afternoon Full leisurely we glide; For both our oars, with little skill, By little arms are plied, While little hands make vain pretense Our wanderings to guide.

Opening poem, first stanza.

Thus grew the tale of Wonderland: Thus slowly, one by one, Its quaint events were hammered out — And now our tale is done And home we steer, a merry crew, Beneath the setting sun.

Opening poem, stanza six.

Alice! a childish story take, And with a gentle hand Lay it where Childhood's dreams are twined In Memory's mystic band, Like pilgrim's withered wreath of flowers Plucked in a far-off land.

Opening poem, stanza seven.

Alice was beginning to get very tired of sitting by her sister on the bank, and 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 what is the use of a book,' thought Alice, 'without pictures or conversations?'

Opening paragraph.

There was nothing so very remarkable in that; nor did Alice think it so very much out of the ordinary to hear the Rabbit say to itself 'Oh dear! Oh dear! I shall be too late!' ...but when the Rabbit actually took a watch out its waistcoat pocket, and looked at it, and then hurried on, Alice startled to her feet.

After a fall such as this, I shall think nothing of tumbling downstairs!

Alice

If you drink much from a bottle marked 'poison' it is almost certain to disagree with you, sooner or later.

Alice

Well, if I eat it, and if it makes me grow larger, I can reach the key; and if makes me grow smaller, I can creep under the door: so either way I'll get into the garden, and I don't care which happens!

Alice

Curiouser and curiouser!

Alice
Encyclopedia
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (commonly shortened to Alice in Wonderland) is an 1865 novel
English novel
The English novel is an important part of English literature.-Early novels in English:A number of works of literature have each been claimed as the first novel in English. See the article First novel in English.-Romantic novel:...

 written by English author Charles Lutwidge Dodgson under the pseudonym
Pseudonym
A pseudonym is a name that a person assumes for a particular purpose and that differs from his or her original orthonym...

 Lewis Carroll
Lewis Carroll
Charles Lutwidge Dodgson , better known by the pseudonym Lewis Carroll , was an English author, mathematician, logician, Anglican deacon and photographer. His most famous writings are Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and its sequel Through the Looking-Glass, as well as the poems "The Hunting of the...

. It tells of a girl named Alice
Alice (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
Alice is a fictional character in the literary classic, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and its sequel, Through the Looking-Glass, And What Alice Found There. She is a young girl from Victorian-era Britain.-Development:...

 who falls down a rabbit hole into a fantasy world
Fantasy world
A fantasy world is a fictional universe used in fantasy novels and games. Typical worlds involve magic or magical abilities and often, but not always, either a medieval or futuristic theme...

 (Wonderland
Wonderland (fictional country)
Wonderland is the setting for Lewis Carroll's 1865 children's novel Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.-Geography:In the story, Wonderland is located underground, and Alice reaches it by travelling down a rabbit hole, possibly on the banks of the Thames between Folly Bridge and Godstow...

) populated by peculiar, anthropomorphic
Anthropomorphism
Anthropomorphism is any attribution of human characteristics to animals, non-living things, phenomena, material states, objects or abstract concepts, such as organizations, governments, spirits or deities. The term was coined in the mid 1700s...

 creatures. The tale plays with logic
Logic
In philosophy, Logic is the formal systematic study of the principles of valid inference and correct reasoning. Logic is used in most intellectual activities, but is studied primarily in the disciplines of philosophy, mathematics, semantics, and computer science...

, giving the story lasting popularity with adults as well as children. It is considered to be one of the best examples of the literary nonsense
Literary nonsense
Literary nonsense is a broad categorization of literature that uses sensical and nonsensical elements to defy language conventions or logical reasoning...

 genre, and its narrative
Narrative
A narrative is a constructive format that describes a sequence of non-fictional or fictional events. The word derives from the Latin verb narrare, "to recount", and is related to the adjective gnarus, "knowing" or "skilled"...

 course and structure have been enormously influential, especially in the fantasy
Fantasy
Fantasy is a genre of fiction that commonly uses magic and other supernatural phenomena as a primary element of plot, theme, or setting. Many works within the genre take place in imaginary worlds where magic is common...

 genre.

Synopsis



Chapter 1 – Down the Rabbit Hole: Alice
Alice (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
Alice is a fictional character in the literary classic, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and its sequel, Through the Looking-Glass, And What Alice Found There. She is a young girl from Victorian-era Britain.-Development:...

 is feeling bored while sitting on the riverbank with her sister, when she notices a talking, clothed White Rabbit
White Rabbit
The White Rabbit works for the Red Queen, but is also a secret member of the Underland Underground Resistance, and was sent by the Hatter to search for Alice...

 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 which 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. A cake with "EAT ME" on it causes her to grow to such a tremendous size her head hits the ceiling.

Chapter 2 – The Pool of Tears: Alice is unhappy and cries as 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
Mouse (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
The Mouse is a fictional character in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. He appears in Chapter II "The Pool of Tears" and Chapter III "A Caucus-Race and a Long Tale" ....

, 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 "Ou est ma chatte?" offends the mouse.

Chapter 3 – The Caucus Race and a Long Tale: The sea of tears becomes crowded with other animals and birds that have been swept away. 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
Dodo (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
-Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland version:The Dodo, who in this adaptation of the book is named Uilleam and is portrayed by Michael Gough, bears a down of brilliant blue and is one of Alice's advisers, who also took first note of her identity as the true Alice. Mysteriously, the dodo vanishes...

 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 cat.

Chapter 4 – 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
Bill the Lizard
Bill the Lizard is a fictional character appearing in Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.- History :Introduced in chapter four, Bill is perceived by Alice to be someone who does all of the hard work for The White Rabbit and the denizens of the community...

, 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 5 – Advice from a Caterpillar: Alice comes upon a mushroom and sitting on it is a blue Caterpillar
Caterpillar (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
The Caterpillar is a fictional character appearing in Lewis Carroll's book, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.-Appearance in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland:...

 smoking a hookah
Hookah
A hookah A hookah(Gujarati હૂકાહ) A hookah(Gujarati હૂકાહ) (Hindustani: हुक़्क़ा (Devanagari, (Nastaleeq) huqqah) also known as a waterpipe or narghile, is a single or multi-stemmed (often glass-based) instrument for smoking in which the smoke is cooled by water. The tobacco smoked is referred to...

. 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 usual height. She stumbles upon a small estate and uses the mushroom to reach a more appropriate height.
Chapter 6 – Pig and Pepper: A Fish-Footman has an invitation for the Duchess
Duchess (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
The Duchess is a character in Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, published in 1865. Carroll does not describe her physically in much detail, although her hideous appearance is strongly established in the popular imagination thanks to John Tenniel's illustrations and from context it...

 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 her grinning Cheshire Cat
Cheshire Cat
The Cheshire Cat is a fictional cat popularised by Lewis Carroll's depiction of it in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Known for his distinctive mischievous grin, the Cheshire Cat has had a notable impact on popular culture.-Origins:...

) 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
March Hare
Haigha, the March Hare is a character most famous for appearing in the tea party scene in Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.The main character, Alice, hypothesises,...

 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 7 – A Mad Tea-Party: Alice becomes a guest at a "mad" tea party along with the March Hare
March Hare
Haigha, the March Hare is a character most famous for appearing in the tea party scene in Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.The main character, Alice, hypothesises,...

, the Hatter, and a sleeping Dormouse
Dormouse (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
The Dormouse is a character in "A Mad Tea-Party", Chapter VII from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. He sat between the March Hare and the Hatter...

 who remains asleep for most of the chapter. The other 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 8 – 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
Queen of Hearts (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
The Queen of Hearts is a character from the book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by the writer and mathematician Lewis Carroll. She is a foul-tempered monarch, that Carroll himself pictured as "a blind fury", and who is quick to decree death sentences at the slightest offense...

 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 9 – 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
Gryphon (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
The Gryphon is a fictional character devised by Lewis Carroll in the popular book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. True to the conventional view of a gryphon, he has the head, talons, and wings of an eagle and the body of a lion.-Role and personality:...

, who takes her to the Mock Turtle
Mock Turtle
The Mock Turtle is a fictional character devised by Lewis Carroll from his popular book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Its name is taken from a dish that was popular in the Victorian period, mock turtle soup....

. 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 10 – Lobster Quadrille: The Mock Turtle and the Gryphon dance to the Lobster Quadrille, while Alice recites (rather incorrectly) "'Tis the Voice of the Lobster
'Tis the Voice of the Lobster
Tis the Voice of the Lobster is a poem by Lewis Carroll that appears in Chapter 10 of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. As recited by Alice to the Mock Turtle and the Gryphon, the first stanza describes a vain and stylish lobster who pretends not to fear sharks, but is in fact terrified by them. In...

". The Mock Turtle sings them "Beautiful Soup" during which the Gryphon drags Alice away for an impending trial.

Chapter 11 – Who Stole the Tarts?: Alice attends a trial whereby the Knave of Hearts
Knave of Hearts (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
The Knave of Hearts is a character from the book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.-Alice's Adventures in Wonderland:The Knave of Hearts is mentioned first in chapter 8, and chapters 11 and 12 deal with his trial for a tart robbery in which the King of Hearts presides as judge...

 is accused of stealing the Queen's tarts. The jury is composed of various animals, including Bill the Lizard
Bill the Lizard
Bill the Lizard is a fictional character appearing in Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.- History :Introduced in chapter four, Bill is perceived by Alice to be someone who does all of the hard work for The White Rabbit and the denizens of the community...

, the White Rabbit is the court's trumpeter, and the judge is the King of Hearts
King of Hearts (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
The King of Hearts is a character from the book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.-Alice's Adventures in Wonderland:He seems to, when compared to the Queen of Hearts, be the moderate part of the Wonderland government...

.
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 can't 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 12 – 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 for tea, 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.

Characters



The following is a list of prominent characters in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

Character allusions


In The Annotated Alice
The Annotated Alice
The Annotated Alice is a work by Martin Gardner incorporating the text of Lewis Carroll's major tales: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass as well as the original illustrations by John Tenniel...

Martin Gardner
Martin Gardner
Martin Gardner was an American mathematics and science writer specializing in recreational mathematics, but with interests encompassing micromagic, stage magic, literature , philosophy, scientific skepticism, and religion...

 provides background information for the characters. The members of the boating party that first heard Carroll's tale show up in Chapter 3 ("A Caucus-Race and a Long Tale"). Alice Liddell herself is there, while Carroll is caricatured as the Dodo (because Dodgson stuttered when he spoke, he sometimes pronounced his last name as Dodo-Dodgson). The Duck refers to Canon Duckworth, the Lory to Lorina Liddell, and the Eaglet to Edith Liddell (Alice Liddell's sisters).

Bill the Lizard may be a play on the name of British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli. One of Tenniel's illustrations in Through the Looking-Glass depicts the character referred to as the "Man in White Paper" (whom Alice meets as a fellow passenger riding on the train with her), as a caricature of Disraeli, wearing a paper hat. The illustrations of the Lion and the Unicorn also bear a striking resemblance to Tenniel's Punch
Punch (magazine)
Punch, or the London Charivari was a British weekly magazine of humour and satire established in 1841 by Henry Mayhew and engraver Ebenezer Landells. Historically, it was most influential in the 1840s and 50s, when it helped to coin the term "cartoon" in its modern sense as a humorous illustration...

illustrations of Gladstone
William Ewart Gladstone
William Ewart Gladstone FRS FSS was a British Liberal statesman. In a career lasting over sixty years, he served as Prime Minister four separate times , more than any other person. Gladstone was also Britain's oldest Prime Minister, 84 years old when he resigned for the last time...

 and Disraeli.

The Hatter is most likely a reference to Theophilus Carter
Theophilus Carter
Theophilus Carter was an eccentric British inventor and furniture dealer most famous for his combination of an alarm clock and a bed, and thought to be an inspiration for the illustration by Sir John Tenniel of Lewis Carroll's characters the Mad Hatter in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Hatta...

, a furniture dealer known in Oxford
Oxford
The city of Oxford is the county town of Oxfordshire, England. The city, made prominent by its medieval university, has a population of just under 165,000, with 153,900 living within the district boundary. It lies about 50 miles north-west of London. The rivers Cherwell and Thames run through...

 for his unorthodox inventions. Tenniel apparently drew the Hatter to resemble Carter, on a suggestion of Carroll's. The Dormouse tells a story about three little sisters named Elsie, Lacie, and Tillie. These are the Liddell sisters: Elsie is L.C. (Lorina Charlotte), Tillie is Edith (her family nickname is Matilda), and Lacie is an anagram
Anagram
An anagram is a type of word play, the result of rearranging the letters of a word or phrase to produce a new word or phrase, using all the original letters exactly once; e.g., orchestra = carthorse, A decimal point = I'm a dot in place, Tom Marvolo Riddle = I am Lord Voldemort. Someone who...

 of Alice.

The Mock Turtle speaks of a Drawling-master, "an old conger eel", who came once a week to teach "Drawling, Stretching, and Fainting in Coils". This is a reference to the art critic John Ruskin
John Ruskin
John Ruskin was the leading English art critic of the Victorian era, also an art patron, draughtsman, watercolourist, a prominent social thinker and philanthropist. He wrote on subjects ranging from geology to architecture, myth to ornithology, literature to education, and botany to political...

, who came once a week to the Liddell house to teach the children drawing, sketching, and painting in oils. (The children did, in fact, learn well; Alice Liddell, for one, produced a number of skilled watercolours.)

The Mock Turtle also sings "Beautiful Soup". This is a parody of a song called "Star of the Evening, Beautiful Star", which was performed as a trio by Lorina, Alice and Edith Liddell for Lewis Carroll in the Liddell home during the same summer in which he first told the story of Alice's Adventures Under Ground.

Poems and songs


Carroll wrote multiple poems and songs for Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, including:
  • "All in the golden afternoon..."—the prefatory verse, an original poem by Carroll that recalls the rowing expedition on which he first told the story of Alice's adventures underground
  • "How Doth the Little Crocodile
    How Doth the Little Crocodile
    "How Doth the Little Crocodile" is a poem by Lewis Carroll which appears in his novel, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. It's recited by Alice in Chapter 2...

    "—a parody of Isaac Watts
    Isaac Watts
    Isaac Watts was an English hymnwriter, theologian and logician. A prolific and popular hymnwriter, he was recognised as the "Father of English Hymnody", credited with some 750 hymns...

    ' nursery rhyme, "Against Idleness And Mischief
    Against Idleness And Mischief
    "Against Idleness and Mischief" is a poem in Divine Songs for Children, by Isaac Watts, and is one of his best known poems. As the title suggests, it is an exhortation to work hard.-Text:...

    "
  • "The Mouse's Tale
    The Mouse's Tale
    "The Mouse's Tale" is a concrete poem by Lewis Carroll which appears in his novel Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Though no formal title for the poem is given in the novel, the chapter title refers to "A Long Tale" and the Mouse introduces it by saying, "Mine is a long and sad tale!"-Concrete...

    "—an example of concrete poetry
    Concrete poetry
    Concrete poetry or shape poetry is poetry in which the typographical arrangement of words is as important in conveying the intended effect as the conventional elements of the poem, such as meaning of words, rhythm, rhyme and so on....

  • "You Are Old, Father William
    You Are Old, Father William
    "You Are Old, Father William" is a poem by Lewis Carroll that appears in his book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland . It is recited by Alice in Chapter 5, "Advice from a Caterpillar"...

    "—a parody of Robert Southey
    Robert Southey
    Robert Southey was an English poet of the Romantic school, one of the so-called "Lake Poets", and Poet Laureate for 30 years from 1813 to his death in 1843...

    's "The Old Man's Comforts and How He Gained Them"
  • The Duchess's lullaby, "Speak roughly to your little boy..."—a parody of David Bates
    David Bates (poet)
    David Bates was an American poet.He was born in Indian Hill, Ohio and educated in Buffalo before working in first Indianapolis then Philadelphia. In 1849, he published a volume of poetry, Eolian....

    ' "Speak Gently"
  • "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Bat
    Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Bat
    "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Bat" is a poem recited by the Mad Hatter in chapter seven of Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. It is a parody of "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star"....

    "—a parody of Jane Taylor
    Jane Taylor (poet)
    Jane Taylor , was an English poet and novelist. She wrote the words for the song Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star in 1806 at age 23, while living in Shilling Street, Lavenham, Suffolk....

    's "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
    Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
    "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" is a popular English nursery rhyme. The lyrics are from an early nineteenth-century English poem, "The Star" by Jane Taylor. The poem, which is in couplet form, was first published in 1806 in Rhymes for the Nursery, a collection of poems by Taylor and her sister Ann...

    "
  • "The Lobster Quadrille"—a parody of Mary Botham Howitt's "The Spider and the Fly
    The Spider and the Fly (poem)
    The Spider and the Fly is a poem by Mary Howitt , published in 1829. The first line of the poem is "'Will you walk into my parlor?' said the Spider to the Fly." When Lewis Carroll was readying Alice's Adventures Under Ground for publication he replaced a parody he had made of a negro minstrel song...

    "
  • "'Tis the Voice of the Lobster
    'Tis the Voice of the Lobster
    Tis the Voice of the Lobster is a poem by Lewis Carroll that appears in Chapter 10 of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. As recited by Alice to the Mock Turtle and the Gryphon, the first stanza describes a vain and stylish lobster who pretends not to fear sharks, but is in fact terrified by them. In...

    "—a parody of Isaac Watts
    Isaac Watts
    Isaac Watts was an English hymnwriter, theologian and logician. A prolific and popular hymnwriter, he was recognised as the "Father of English Hymnody", credited with some 750 hymns...

    ' "The Sluggard
    The Sluggard
    "The Sluggard" is a moralistic poem by Isaac Watts which depicts the unsavory lifestyle of a slothful individual as a negative example. It reflects the Biblical verse "Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise." ....

    "
  • "Beautiful Soup"—a parody of James M. Sayles's "Star of the Evening, Beautiful Star"
  • "The Queen of Hearts
    The Queen of Hearts (poem)
    "The Queen of Hearts" is a poem based on the characters found on playing cards, by an anonymous author, originally published with three lesser-known stanzas, "The King of Spades", "The King of Clubs", and "The Diamond King", in the British publication The European Magazine, no. 434, in April 1782...

    "—an actual nursery rhyme
  • "They told me you had been to her..."—the White Rabbit's evidence


Background



Alice was published in 1865, three years after the Reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson and the Reverend Robinson Duckworth
Robinson Duckworth
Reverend Robinson Duckworth DD, CVO, VD, was present in the original boating expedition of 4 July 1862 during which Alice's Adventures were first told by Lewis Carroll ....

 rowed in a boat, on 4 July 1862, up the Isis with the three young daughters of Henry Liddell
Henry Liddell
Henry George Liddell was Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University, dean of Christ Church, Oxford, headmaster of Westminster School , author of A History of Rome , and co-author of the monumental work A Greek-English Lexicon, which is still used by students of Greek...

, (the Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University and Dean of Christ Church) : Lorina Charlotte Liddell (aged 13, born 1849) ("Prima" in the book's prefatory verse); Alice Pleasance Liddell
Alice Liddell
Alice Pleasance Liddell , known for most of her adult life by her married name, Alice Hargreaves, inspired the children's classic Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, whose protagonist Alice is said to be named after her.-Biography:...

 (aged 10, born 1852) ("Secunda" in the prefatory verse); Edith Mary Liddell (aged 8, born 1853) ("Tertia" in the prefatory verse).

The journey began at Folly Bridge
Folly Bridge
Folly Bridge is a stone bridge over the River Thames carrying the Abingdon Road, south from the centre of Oxford, England. It was erected 1825–27, to designs of a little-known architect, Ebenezer Perry , who practiced in London....

 near Oxford
Oxford
The city of Oxford is the county town of Oxfordshire, England. The city, made prominent by its medieval university, has a population of just under 165,000, with 153,900 living within the district boundary. It lies about 50 miles north-west of London. The rivers Cherwell and Thames run through...

 and ended five miles away in the village of Godstow
Godstow
Godstow is a hamlet on the River Thames about northwest of the centre of Oxford. The ruins of Godstow Abbey, or Godstow Nunnery, are here.-The Abbey:...

. During the trip the Reverend Dodgson told the girls a story that featured a bored little girl named Alice who goes looking for an adventure. The girls loved it, and Alice Liddell asked Dodgson to write it down for her. He began writing the manuscript of the story the next day, although that earliest version no longer exists. The girls and Dodgson took another boat trip a month later when he elaborated the plot to the story of Alice, and in November he began working on the manuscript in earnest.

To add the finishing touches he researched natural history for the animals presented in the book, and then had the book examined by other children—particularly the MacDonald children. He added his own illustrations but approached John Tenniel
John Tenniel
Sir John Tenniel was a British illustrator, graphic humorist and political cartoonist whose work was prominent during the second half of England’s 19th century. Tenniel is considered important to the study of that period’s social, literary, and art histories...

 to illustrate the book for publication, telling him that the story had been well liked by children.

On 26 November 1864 he gave Alice the handwritten manuscript of Alice's Adventures Under Ground, with illustrations by Dodgson himself, dedicating it as "A Christmas Gift to a Dear Child in Memory of a Summer's Day". Some, including Martin Gardner
Martin Gardner
Martin Gardner was an American mathematics and science writer specializing in recreational mathematics, but with interests encompassing micromagic, stage magic, literature , philosophy, scientific skepticism, and religion...

, speculate there was an earlier version that was destroyed later by Dodgson when he printed a more elaborate copy by hand.

But before Alice received her copy, Dodgson was already preparing it for publication and expanding the 15,500-word original to 27,500 words, most notably adding the episodes about the Cheshire Cat and the Mad Tea-Party.

Symbolism


Most of the book's adventures may have been based on and influenced by people, situations and buildings in Oxford and at Christ Church, e.g., the "Rabbit Hole," which symbolized the actual stairs in the back of the main hall in Christ Church. A carving of a griffon and rabbit, as seen in Ripon Cathedral
Ripon Cathedral
Ripon Cathedral is the seat of the Bishop of Ripon and Leeds and the mother church of the Diocese of Ripon and Leeds, situated in the small North Yorkshire city of Ripon, England.-Background:...

, where Carroll's father was a canon, may have provided inspiration for the tale.

Since Carroll was a mathematician at Christ Church
Christ Church, Oxford
Christ Church or house of Christ, and thus sometimes known as The House), is one of the largest constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in England...

, it has been suggested that there are many references and mathematical concepts in both this story and also in Through the Looking-Glass
Through the Looking-Glass
Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There is a work of literature by Lewis Carroll . It is the sequel to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland...

; examples include:
  • In chapter 1, "Down the Rabbit-Hole", in the midst of shrinking, Alice waxes philosophic concerning what final size she will end up as, perhaps "going out altogether, like a candle."; this pondering reflects the concept of a limit
    Limit of a function
    In mathematics, the limit of a function is a fundamental concept in calculus and analysis concerning the behavior of that function near a particular input....

    .
  • In chapter 2, "The Pool of Tears", Alice tries to perform multiplication but produces some odd results: "Let me see: four times five is twelve, and four times six is thirteen, and four times seven is—oh dear! I shall never get to twenty at that rate!" This explores the representation of numbers using different bases and positional numeral systems: 4 x 5 = 12 in base 18 notation, 4 x 6 = 13 in base 21 notation, and 4 x 7 could be 14 in base 24 notation. Continuing this sequence, going up three bases each time, the result will continue to be less than 20 in the corresponding base notation. (After 19 the product would be 1A, then 1B, 1C, 1D, and so on.)
  • In chapter 5, "Advice from a Caterpillar", the Pigeon asserts that little girls are some kind of serpent, for both little girls and serpents eat eggs. This general concept of abstraction occurs widely in many fields of science; an example in mathematics of employing this reasoning would be in the substitution of variables
    Substitution of variables
    In mathematics, substitution of variables refers to the substitution of certain variables with other variables....

    .
  • In chapter 7, "A Mad Tea-Party", the March Hare, the Hatter, and the Dormouse give several examples in which the semantic value of a sentence A is not the same value of the converse
    Antimetabole
    In rhetoric, antimetabole is the repetition of words in successive clauses, but in transposed grammatical order...

     of A (for example, "Why, you might just as well say that 'I see what I eat' is the same thing as 'I eat what I see'!"); in logic and mathematics, this is discussing an inverse relation
    Inverse relation
    In mathematics, the inverse relation of a binary relation is the relation that occurs when you switch the order of the elements in the relation. For example, the inverse of the relation 'child of' is the relation 'parent of'...

    ship.
  • Also in chapter 7, Alice ponders what it means when the changing of seats around the circular table places them back at the beginning. This is an observation of addition on the ring of integers
    Ring of integers
    In mathematics, the ring of integers is the set of integers making an algebraic structure Z with the operations of integer addition, negation, and multiplication...

     modulo
    Modular arithmetic
    In mathematics, modular arithmetic is a system of arithmetic for integers, where numbers "wrap around" after they reach a certain value—the modulus....

     N.
  • The Cheshire cat fades until it disappears entirely, leaving only its wide grin, suspended in the air, leading Alice to marvel and note that she has seen a cat without a grin, but never a grin without a cat. Deep abstraction of concepts, such as non-Euclidean geometry, abstract algebra, and the beginnings of mathematical logic, was taking over mathematics at the time Dodgson was writing. Dodgson's delineation of the relationship between cat and grin can be taken to represent the very concept of mathematics and number itself. For example, instead of considering two or three apples, one may easily consider the concept of 'apple', upon which the concepts of 'two' and 'three' may seem to depend. A far more sophisticated jump is to consider the concepts of 'two' and 'three' by themselves, just like a grin, originally seemingly dependent on the cat, separated conceptually from its physical object.


Mathematician Keith Devlin
Keith Devlin
Keith J. Devlin is a British mathematician and popular science writer. He has lived in the USA since 1987 and has dual American-British citizenship.- Biography :...

 asserted in the journal of The Mathematical Association of America
Mathematical Association of America
The Mathematical Association of America is a professional society that focuses on mathematics accessible at the undergraduate level. Members include university, college, and high school teachers; graduate and undergraduate students; pure and applied mathematicians; computer scientists;...

 that Dodgson wrote Alice in Wonderland in its final form as a scathing satire on new modern mathematics that were emerging in the mid-19th century.

It has been suggested by several people, including Martin Gardner
Martin Gardner
Martin Gardner was an American mathematics and science writer specializing in recreational mathematics, but with interests encompassing micromagic, stage magic, literature , philosophy, scientific skepticism, and religion...

 and Selwyn Goodacre, that Dodgson had an interest in the French language
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

, choosing to make references and puns about it in the story. It is most likely that these are references to French lessons—a common feature of a Victorian middle-class girl's upbringing. For example, in the second chapter Alice posits that the mouse may be French. She therefore chooses to speak the first sentence of her French lesson-book to it: "Où est ma chatte?" ("Where is my cat?"). In Henri Bué's French translation, Alice posits that the mouse may be Italian and speaks Italian to it.

Pat's "Digging for apples" could be a cross-language pun, as pomme de terre (literally; "apple of the earth") means potato
Potato
The potato is a starchy, tuberous crop from the perennial Solanum tuberosum of the Solanaceae family . The word potato may refer to the plant itself as well as the edible tuber. In the region of the Andes, there are some other closely related cultivated potato species...

 and pomme means apple
Apple
The apple is the pomaceous fruit of the apple tree, species Malus domestica in the rose family . It is one of the most widely cultivated tree fruits, and the most widely known of the many members of genus Malus that are used by humans. Apple grow on small, deciduous trees that blossom in the spring...

, which little English girls studying French would easily guess.

In the second chapter, Alice initially addresses the mouse as "O Mouse", based on her memory of the noun declension
Declension
In linguistics, declension is the inflection of nouns, pronouns, adjectives, and articles to indicate number , case , and gender...

s "in her brother's Latin Grammar, 'A mouse — of a mouse — to a mouse — a mouse — O mouse!'" These words correspond to the first five of Latin's six cases, in a traditional order established by medieval grammarians: mus (nominative), muris (genitive), muri (dative), murem (accusative), (O) mus (vocative). The sixth case, mure (ablative) is absent from Alice's recitation.

In Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There
Through the Looking-Glass
Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There is a work of literature by Lewis Carroll . It is the sequel to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland...

, the White Queen offers to hire Alice as her lady's maid and to pay her "Twopence a week, and jam every other day." Alice says that she doesn't want any jam today, and the Queen tells her: "You couldn't have it if you did want it. The rule is, jam tomorrow and jam yesterday- but never jam to-day." This is a reference to the rule in Latin that the word iam or jam meaning now in the sense of already or at that time cannot be used to describe now in the present, which is nunc in Latin. Jam is therefore never available today.

In the eighth chapter, three cards are painting the roses on a rose tree red, because they had accidentally planted a white-rose tree that the Queen of Hearts
Queen of Hearts (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
The Queen of Hearts is a character from the book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by the writer and mathematician Lewis Carroll. She is a foul-tempered monarch, that Carroll himself pictured as "a blind fury", and who is quick to decree death sentences at the slightest offense...

 hates. Red roses symbolized the English House of Lancaster
House of Lancaster
The House of Lancaster was a branch of the royal House of Plantagenet. It was one of the opposing factions involved in the Wars of the Roses, an intermittent civil war which affected England and Wales during the 15th century...

, while white roses were the symbol for their rival House of York
House of York
The House of York was a branch of the English royal House of Plantagenet, three members of which became English kings in the late 15th century. The House of York was descended in the paternal line from Edmund of Langley, 1st Duke of York, the fourth surviving son of Edward III, but also represented...

. This scene is an allusion to the Wars of the Roses
Wars of the Roses
The Wars of the Roses were a series of dynastic civil wars for the throne of England fought between supporters of two rival branches of the royal House of Plantagenet: the houses of Lancaster and York...

.

Illustrations


The manuscript was illustrated by Dodgson himself who added 37 illustrations—printed in a facsimile
Facsimile
A facsimile is a copy or reproduction of an old book, manuscript, map, art print, or other item of historical value that is as true to the original source as possible. It differs from other forms of reproduction by attempting to replicate the source as accurately as possible in terms of scale,...

 edition in 1887. John Tenniel provided 42 wood engraved
Wood engraving
Wood engraving is a technique in printmaking where the "matrix" worked by the artist is a block of wood. It is a variety of woodcut and so a relief printing technique, where ink is applied to the face of the block and printed by using relatively low pressure. A normal engraving, like an etching,...

 illustrations for the published version of the book. The first print run was destroyed at his request because he was dissatisfied with the quality. The book was reprinted and published in 1866.

John Tenniel
John Tenniel
Sir John Tenniel was a British illustrator, graphic humorist and political cartoonist whose work was prominent during the second half of England’s 19th century. Tenniel is considered important to the study of that period’s social, literary, and art histories...

's illustrations of Alice do not portray the real Alice Liddell
Alice Liddell
Alice Pleasance Liddell , known for most of her adult life by her married name, Alice Hargreaves, inspired the children's classic Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, whose protagonist Alice is said to be named after her.-Biography:...

, who had dark hair and a short fringe.
Alice has provided a challenge for other illustrators, including those of 1907 by Charles Pears and the full series of colour plates and line-drawings by Harry Rountree
Harry Rountree
Harry Rountree was a prolific illustrator working in England around the turn of the 19/20th centuries. He came from New Zealand in 1901 to London, when he was 23 years old....

 published in the (inter-War) Children's Press (Glasgow) edition.

Reception


When it was released Alice in Wonderland received little attention; the book failed to be named in an 1888 poll of the most popular children’s stories. Generally it received poor reviews with reviewers giving more credit to Tenniel's illustrations than to Carroll’s story. At the release of Through the Looking-Glass, the first Alice tale gained in popularity and by the end of the 19th century Sir Walter Besant wrote that Alice in Wonderland "was a book of that extremely rare kind which will belong to all the generations to come until the language becomes obsolete".

Publication history


In 1865, Dodgson's tale was published as Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by "Lewis Carroll
Lewis Carroll
Charles Lutwidge Dodgson , better known by the pseudonym Lewis Carroll , was an English author, mathematician, logician, Anglican deacon and photographer. His most famous writings are Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and its sequel Through the Looking-Glass, as well as the poems "The Hunting of the...

" with illustrations by John Tenniel
John Tenniel
Sir John Tenniel was a British illustrator, graphic humorist and political cartoonist whose work was prominent during the second half of England’s 19th century. Tenniel is considered important to the study of that period’s social, literary, and art histories...

. The first print run of 2,000 was held back because Tenniel objected to the print quality. A new edition, released in December of the same year, but carrying an 1866 date, was quickly printed. As it turned out, the original edition was sold with Dodgson's permission to the New York publishing house of Appleton. The binding for the Appleton Alice was virtually identical to the 1866 Macmillan Alice, except for the publisher's name at the foot of the spine. The title page of the Appleton Alice was an insert cancelling the original Macmillan title page of 1865, and bearing the New York publisher's imprint and the date 1866.

The entire print run sold out quickly. Alice was a publishing sensation, beloved by children and adults alike. Among its first avid readers were Queen Victoria
Victoria of the United Kingdom
Victoria was the monarch of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until her death. From 1 May 1876, she used the additional title of Empress of India....

 and the young Oscar Wilde
Oscar Wilde
Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde was an Irish writer and poet. After writing in different forms throughout the 1880s, he became one of London's most popular playwrights in the early 1890s...

. The book has never been out of print. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland has been translated into at least 97 languages. There have now been over a hundred editions of the book, as well as countless adaptations in other media, especially theatre and film.

The book is commonly referred to by the abbreviated title Alice in Wonderland, an alternative title popularized by the numerous stage, film and television adaptations of the story produced over the years. Some printings of this title contain both Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and its sequel Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There
Through the Looking-Glass
Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There is a work of literature by Lewis Carroll . It is the sequel to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland...

.

Publication timeline


The following list is a timeline of major publication events related to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland:
  • 1865: First UK edition (the suppressed edition).
  • 1865: First US edition.
  • 1869: Alice's Abenteuer im Wunderland is published in German translation by Antonie Zimmermann.
  • 1869: Aventures d'Alice au pays des merveilles is published in French translation by Henri Bué.
  • 1870: Alice's Äfventyr i Sagolandet is published in Swedish translation by Emily Nonnen.
  • 1871: Dodgson meets another Alice during his time in London, Alice Raikes, and talks with her about her reflection in a mirror, leading to another book Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There
    Through the Looking-Glass
    Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There is a work of literature by Lewis Carroll . It is the sequel to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland...

    , which sells even better.
  • 1872: Le Avventure di Alice nel Paese delle Meraviglie is published in Italian translation by Teodorico Pietrocòla Rossetti.
  • 1886: Carroll publishes a facsimile of the earlier Alice's Adventures Under Ground manuscript.
  • 1890: Carroll publishes The Nursery "Alice", a special edition "to be read by Children aged from Nought to Five".
  • 1905: Mrs J. C. Gorham publishes Alice's Adventures in Wonderland retold in words of one syllable
    Alice's Adventures in Wonderland retold in words of one syllable
    Alice's Adventures in Wonderland retold in words of one syllable is a retelling by Mrs J. C. Gorham of Lewis Carroll's novel, written in 1905 and published by A. L. Burt of New York. It is one of a series of "One Syllable Books" published by Burt, which were "selected specially for young people's...

    in a series of such books published by A. L. Burt Company, aimed at young readers.
  • 1906: First translation into Finnish by Anni Swan
    Anni Swan
    Anni Emilia Swan was a Finnish writer. Swan wrote many books for children and young adults, was a journalist for children's magazines and worked as a translator...

     (Liisan seikkailut ihmemaailmassa).
  • 1907: Copyright on AAIW expires in UK, and so AAIW enters the public domain
    Public domain
    Works are in the public domain if the intellectual property rights have expired, if the intellectual property rights are forfeited, or if they are not covered by intellectual property rights at all...

    . At least 8 new editions are published in that year alone.
  • 1916: Publication of the first edition of the Windermere Series, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Illustrated by Milo Winter
    Milo Winter
    Milo Winter was a well known book illustrator, who produced works for editions of Aesop's Fables, Arabian Nights, Alice in Wonderland, Gulliver's Travels, Tanglewood Tales and others.- Background :...

    .
  • 1928: The manuscript of Alice's Adventures Under Ground that Carroll wrote and illustrated and that he had given to Alice Liddell was sold at Sotheby's on April 3. It sold to Philip Rosenbach
    Rosenbach Museum & Library
    The Rosenbach Museum & Library is located within two 19th-century townhouses at 2008 and 2010 Delancey Place in Philadelphia. The historic houses contain the collections and treasures of Philip Rosenbach and his younger brother Dr. A. S. W. Rosenbach...

     for ₤15,400, a world record for the sale of a manuscript at the time.
  • 1960: American writer Martin Gardner
    Martin Gardner
    Martin Gardner was an American mathematics and science writer specializing in recreational mathematics, but with interests encompassing micromagic, stage magic, literature , philosophy, scientific skepticism, and religion...

     publishes a special edition, The Annotated Alice
    The Annotated Alice
    The Annotated Alice is a work by Martin Gardner incorporating the text of Lewis Carroll's major tales: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass as well as the original illustrations by John Tenniel...

    , incorporating the text of both Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass. It has extensive annotations explaining the hidden allusions in the books, and includes full texts of the Victorian era
    Victorian era
    The Victorian era of British history was the period of Queen Victoria's reign from 20 June 1837 until her death on 22 January 1901. It was a long period of peace, prosperity, refined sensibilities and national self-confidence...

     poems parodied in them. Later editions expand on these annotations.
  • 1961: The Folio Society
    Folio Society
    The Folio Society is a book club based in London that produces new editions of classic books. Their books are notable for their high quality bindings and original illustrations...

     publication with 42 illustrations by John Tenniel
    John Tenniel
    Sir John Tenniel was a British illustrator, graphic humorist and political cartoonist whose work was prominent during the second half of England’s 19th century. Tenniel is considered important to the study of that period’s social, literary, and art histories...

    .
  • 1998: Lewis Carroll's own copy of Alice, one of only six surviving copies of the 1865 first edition, is sold at an auction for US$1.54 million to an anonymous American buyer, becoming the most expensive children's book (or 19th-century work of literature) ever sold, up to that time.
  • 2008: Folio Alice's Adventures Under Ground facsimile edition (limited to 3,750 copies, boxed with The Original Alice pamphlet).
  • 2009: Children’s book collector and former American football player Pat McInally
    Pat McInally
    John Patrick "Pat" McInally , is a former punter and wide receiver for the National Football League's Cincinnati Bengals from 1976 to 1985.-Early career:...

     reportedly sold Alice Liddell’s own copy at auction for $115,000.

Cinema and television


The book has inspired numerous film and television adaptations. The following list is of direct adaptations of Adventures in Wonderland (sometimes merging it with Through the Looking-Glass), not other sequels or works otherwise inspired by the works (such as Tim Burton
Tim Burton
Timothy William "Tim" Burton is an American film director, film producer, writer and artist. He is famous for dark, quirky-themed movies such as Beetlejuice, Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Ed Wood, Sleepy Hollow, Corpse Bride and Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet...

's 2010 film Alice in Wonderland
Alice in Wonderland (2010 film)
Alice in Wonderland is a 2010 American computer-animated/live action fantasy adventure film directed by Tim Burton, written by Linda Woolverton, and released by Walt Disney Pictures...

):
  • Alice in Wonderland (1903 film)
    Alice in Wonderland (1903 film)
    Alice in Wonderland is a 1903 British silent film directed by Cecil Hepworth and Percy Stow. It is the first movie adaptation of Lewis Carroll's children's book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland....

    , silent film
    Silent film
    A silent film is a film with no synchronized recorded sound, especially with no spoken dialogue. In silent films for entertainment the dialogue is transmitted through muted gestures, pantomime and title cards...

    , directed by Cecil Hepworth and Percy Stow, UK
  • Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1910 film)
    Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1910 film)
    Alice's Adventures in Wonderland is a 10-minute black-and-white silent film made in the United States in 1910.Made by the Edison Manufacturing Company and directed by Edwin S. Porter, the film starred Gladys Hulette as Alice...

    , silent film, directed by Edwin Stanton Porter
  • Alice in Wonderland (1915 film)
    Alice in Wonderland (1915 film)
    Alice in Wonderland is a 1915 silent film adaptation of Lewis Carroll's classic novel, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, directed and written by W.W. Young and starring Viola Savoy as Alice....

    , silent film, directed by W. W. Young
  • Alice in Wonderland (1931 film)
    Alice in Wonderland (1931 film)
    Alice in Wonderland is a 1931 black-and-white American-made film based on Lewis Carroll's novel Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. The first sound version of the story, and therefore the first film to use Carroll's original dialogue, the film starred Ruth Gilbert as Alice and Leslie King as the Mad...

    , talkie, directed by Bud Pollard
  • Alice in Wonderland (1933 film)
    Alice in Wonderland (1933 film)
    Alice in Wonderland is a 1933 film version of the famous Alice novels of Lewis Carroll. The film was produced by Paramount Pictures, featuring an all-star cast. It is all live-action, except for the Walrus and The Carpenter sequence, which was animated by Leon Schlesinger Productions.Stars featured...

    , directed by Norman Z. McLeod
    Norman Z. McLeod
    Norman Zenos McLeod was an American film director, cartoonist and writer...

    , US
  • Alice in Wonderland (1937 TV program), directed by George More O'Ferrall
    George More O'Ferrall
    George More O'Ferrall was a British film and television director.-Selected filmography:*The Holly and the Ivy *Angels One Five *The Heart of the Matter...

  • Alice (1946 TV program), on BBC
    BBC
    The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...

    , starring Vivian Pickles
    Vivian Pickles
    Vivian Pickles , is an English actress.She began her career as a child star after being chosen by Mary Field for a series of Saturday Morning children's films, including the lead roles in Jean's Plan and the serial The Adventures of Peter Joe...

     directed by George More O'Ferrall
    George More O'Ferrall
    George More O'Ferrall was a British film and television director.-Selected filmography:*The Holly and the Ivy *Angels One Five *The Heart of the Matter...

    , UK
  • Alice in Wonderland (1949 film)
    Alice in Wonderland (1949 film)
    Alice in Wonderland is a 1949 French film based on Lewis Carroll's fantasy novel Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Directed by Dallas Bower, the film stars Carol Marsh as Alice, Stephen Murray as Lewis Carroll, and Raymond Bussières as The Tailor...

    , live-action/
    Live-action/animated film
    A live-action/animated film is a motion picture that features a combination of real actors or elements: live-action and animated elements, typically interacting.-History:...

    stop motion
    Stop motion
    Stop motion is an animation technique to make a physically manipulated object appear to move on its own. The object is moved in small increments between individually photographed frames, creating the illusion of movement when the series of frames is played as a continuous sequence...

     film, animation directed by Lou Bunin
    Lou Bunin
    Lou Bunin was a prominent puppeteer, an artist, and pioneer of stop-motion animation in the latter half of the twentieth century. While working as a mural artist under Diego Rivera in Mexico City in 1926, Bunin created political puppet shows using marionettes including a production of Eugene...

     
  • Alice in Wonderland (1951 film)
    Alice in Wonderland (1951 film)
    Alice in Wonderland is a 1951 American animated feature produced by Walt Disney and based primarily on Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland with a few additional elements from Through the Looking-Glass. Thirteenth in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series, the film was released in New...

    , traditional animation
    Traditional animation
    Traditional animation, is an animation technique where each frame is drawn by hand...

    , Walt Disney Animation Studios, US
  • Alice in Wonderland (1955 TV program), a live television adaptation of the 1932 Broadway
    Broadway theatre
    Broadway theatre, commonly called simply Broadway, refers to theatrical performances presented in one of the 40 professional theatres with 500 or more seats located in the Theatre District centered along Broadway, and in Lincoln Center, in Manhattan in New York City...

     version of the novel, co-written by Eva LeGallienne and directed by George Schaefer
    George Schaefer (director)
    George Louis Schaefer was a director of television and Broadway theatre from the 1950s to the 1990s.-Life and career:...

     for the Hallmark Hall of Fame
    Hallmark Hall of Fame
    Hallmark Hall of Fame is an anthology program on American television, sponsored by Hallmark Cards, a Kansas City based greeting card company. The second longest-running television program in the history of television, it has a historically long run, beginning in 1951 and continuing into 2011...

  • Alice in Wonderland (or What's a Nice Kid Like You Doing in a Place Like This?), 1966 animated Hanna-Barbera
    Hanna-Barbera
    Hanna-Barbera Productions, Inc. was an American animation studio that dominated North American television animation during the second half of the 20th century...

     TV movie, with Janet Waldo
    Janet Waldo
    Janet Waldo is an American actress and voice artist with a career encompassing radio, television, animation and live-action films. She is best known in animation for voicing Judy Jetson, Penelope Pitstop and Josie McCoy in Josie and the Pussycats...

     as Alice
  • Alice in Wonderland (1966 television film)
    Alice in Wonderland (1966 film)
    Alice in Wonderland is a BBC television play based on Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. It was directed by Jonathan Miller, then most widely known for his appearance in the long-running satirical revue Beyond the Fringe....

    , BBC
    BBC
    The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...

     television play directed by Jonathan Miller
    Jonathan Miller
    Sir Jonathan Wolfe Miller CBE is a British theatre and opera director, author, physician, television presenter, humorist and sculptor. Trained as a physician in the late 1950s, he first came to prominence in the 1960s with his role in the comedy revue Beyond the Fringe with fellow writers and...

    , UK
  • "Alice in Wonderland" (1983 television film)
    Alice in Wonderland (1983 film)
    A 1982 Broadway stage performance of Alice in Wonderland was telecast on PBS's Great Performances in 1983. Directed by Kirk Browning, it was produced by PBS affiliate WNET in New York. Black-and-white papier-mâché costumes aimed to re-create the book's original artwork by John Tenniel.The...

    , PBS Great Performances
    Great Performances
    Great Performances, a television series devoted to the performing arts, has been telecast on Public Broadcasting Service public television since 1972...

     presentation of a 1982 stage play which was in turn a revival of the 1932 LeGalienne/Schaefer
    George Schaefer (director)
    George Louis Schaefer was a director of television and Broadway theatre from the 1950s to the 1990s.-Life and career:...

     production
  • Alice (1988 film)
    Alice (1988 film)
    Alice is a 1988 Czechoslovak film directed by Jan Švankmajer. Its original Czech title is Něco z Alenky, which means "Something from Alice". It is a free adaptation of Lewis Carroll's first Alice book, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, about a girl who follows a white rabbit into a bizarre fantasy...

     by Jan Švankmajer
    Jan Švankmajer
    Jan Švankmajer is a Czech filmmaker and artist whose work spans several media. He is a self-labeled surrealist known for his surreal animations and features, which have greatly influenced other artists such as Tim Burton, Terry Gilliam, the Brothers Quay, and many others.- Life and career :Jan...

     Stop motion and live action
  • Adventures in Wonderland
    Adventures in Wonderland
    Adventures in Wonderland is a live-action musical television series based on Walt Disney's animated classic Alice in Wonderland. In the series, Alice , was portrayed as a girl who can go to and from Wonderland simply by walking through her mirror .Usually the...

    , 1991 to 1995 Disney television series
  • Alice, 2010' a Syfy
    Syfy
    Syfy , formerly known as the Sci-Fi Channel and SCI FI, is an American cable television channel featuring science fiction, supernatural, fantasy, reality, paranormal, wrestling, and horror programming. Launched on September 24, 1992, it is part of the entertainment conglomerate NBCUniversal, a...

     adaptation

Comic books


The book has also inspired numerous comic book adaptations:
  • Walt Disney's Alice in Wonderland (Dell Comics
    Dell Comics
    Dell Comics was the comic book publishing arm of Dell Publishing, which got its start in pulp magazines. It published comics from 1929 to 1973. At its peak, it was the most prominent and successful American company in the medium...

    , 1951)
  • Walt Disney's Alice in Wonderland (Gold Key Comics
    Gold Key Comics
    Gold Key Comics was an imprint of Western Publishing created for comic books distributed to newsstands. Also known as Whitman Comics, Gold Key operated from 1962 to 1984.-History:...

    , 1965)
  • Walt Disney's Alice in Wonderland (Whitman, 1984)
  • Glenn Diddit's Alice's Adventures In Wonderland (CreateSpace, 2009)

Live performance


With the immediate popularity of the book, it did not take long for live performances to begin. One early example is Alice in Wonderland
Alice in Wonderland (musical)
Alice in Wonderland is a musical pantomime by Henry Saville Clark and Walter Slaughter and Aubrey Hopwood , based, with Lewis Carroll's permission, on his books Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass...

, a musical play
Musical theatre
Musical theatre is a form of theatre combining songs, spoken dialogue, acting, and dance. The emotional content of the piece – humor, pathos, love, anger – as well as the story itself, is communicated through the words, music, movement and technical aspects of the entertainment as an...

 by H. Saville Clark (book) and Walter Slaughter
Walter Slaughter
Walter Alfred Slaughter was an English conductor and composer of musical comedy, comic opera and children's shows. He was engaged in the West End as a composer and musical director from 1883 to 1904.-Life and career:...

 (music), which played in 1886 at the Prince of Wales Theatre
Prince of Wales Theatre
The Prince of Wales Theatre is a West End theatre on Coventry Street, near Leicester Square in the City of Westminster. It was established in 1884 and rebuilt in 1937, and extensively refurbished in 2004 by Sir Cameron Mackintosh, its current owner...

 in London.

As the book and its sequel are Carroll's most widely recognized works, they have also inspired numerous live performances, including plays
Play (theatre)
A play is a form of literature written by a playwright, usually consisting of scripted dialogue between characters, intended for theatrical performance rather than just reading. There are rare dramatists, notably George Bernard Shaw, who have had little preference whether their plays were performed...

, opera
Opera
Opera is an art form in which singers and musicians perform a dramatic work combining text and musical score, usually in a theatrical setting. Opera incorporates many of the elements of spoken theatre, such as acting, scenery, and costumes and sometimes includes dance...

s, ballet
Ballet
Ballet is a type of performance dance, that originated in the Italian Renaissance courts of the 15th century, and which was further developed in France and Russia as a concert dance form. The early portions preceded the invention of the proscenium stage and were presented in large chambers with...

s, and traditional English pantomime
Pantomime
Pantomime — not to be confused with a mime artist, a theatrical performer of mime—is a musical-comedy theatrical production traditionally found in the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Jamaica, South Africa, India, Ireland, Gibraltar and Malta, and is mostly performed during the...

s. These works range from fairly faithful adaptations to those that use the story as a basis for new works. An example of the latter is The Eighth Square, a murder mystery set in Wonderland, written by Matthew Fleming
Matthew Fleming
Matthew Valentine Fleming is a former cricketer who represented Kent and England.Born out of his time, his background was Eton and the Royal Greenjackets, his approach was cavalier. His first 2 scoring shots in first class cricket were sixes.He played 11 One Day Internationals but no Test matches...

 and music and lyrics by Ben J. Macpherson. This goth-toned rock musical premiered in 2006 at the New Theatre Royal
New Theatre Royal
The New Theatre Royal is a Victorian theatre in the centre of Portsmouth, Hampshire, United Kingdom. The building was constructed in 1854 as Landport Hall. It was converted to a theatre two years later. It was rebuilt in 1884 by Charles J. Phipps and again in 1900 by Frank Matcham...

 in Portsmouth
Portsmouth
Portsmouth is the second largest city in the ceremonial county of Hampshire on the south coast of England. Portsmouth is notable for being the United Kingdom's only island city; it is located mainly on Portsea Island...

, England. The TA Fantastika, a popular Black light theatre
Black light theatre
Black Light Theatre or simply Black Theatre, is a theatrical performance style characterized by the use of black box theatre augmented by black light illusion. This form of theatre originated from Asia and can be found in many places around the world...

 in Prague
Prague
Prague is the capital and largest city of the Czech Republic. Situated in the north-west of the country on the Vltava river, the city is home to about 1.3 million people, while its metropolitan area is estimated to have a population of over 2.3 million...

 performs "Aspects of Alice"; written and directed by Petr Kratochvíl. This adaptation is not faithful to the books, but rather explores Alice's journey into adulthood while incorporating allusions to the history of Czech Republic.

Over the years, many notable people in the performing arts have been involved in Alice productions. Actress Eva Le Gallienne
Eva Le Gallienne
Eva Le Gallienne was a well-known actress, producer, and director, during the first half of the 20th century.-Early life and early career:...

 famously adapted both Alice books for the stage in 1932; this production has been revived in New York in 1947 and 1982. One of the most well-known American productions was Joseph Papp
Joseph Papp
Joseph Papp was an American theatrical producer and director. Papp established The Public Theater in what had been the Astor Library Building in downtown New York . "The Public," as it is known, has many small theatres within it...

's 1980 staging of Alice in Concert at the Public Theater
Public Theater
The Public Theater is a New York City arts organization founded as The Shakespeare Workshop in 1954 by Joseph Papp, with the intention of showcasing the works of up-and-coming playwrights and performers. It is headquartered at 425 Lafayette Street in the former Astor Library in the East Village...

 in New York City. Elizabeth Swados
Elizabeth Swados
Elizabeth Swados is an American writer, composer, musician, and theatre director. While some of her subject matter is humorous, such as her satirical look at Ronald Reagan, Rap Master Ronnie, and Doonesbury - both collaborations with Garry Trudeau - much of her work deals with dark issues such as...

 wrote the book, lyrics, and music. Based on both Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass, Papp and Swados had previously produced a version of it at the New York Shakespeare Festival
New York Shakespeare Festival
New York Shakespeare Festival is the previous name of the New York City theatrical producing organization now known as the Public Theater. The Festival produced shows at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, as part of its free Shakespeare in the Park series, at the Public Theatre near Astor Place...

. Meryl Streep
Meryl Streep
Mary Louise "Meryl" Streep is an American actress who has worked in theatre, television and film.Streep made her professional stage debut in 1971's The Playboy of Seville, before her screen debut in the television movie The Deadliest Season in 1977. In that same year, she made her film debut with...

 played Alice, the White Queen, and Humpty Dumpty. The cast also included Debbie Allen
Debbie Allen
Deborrah Kaye “Debbie” Allen is an American actress, dancer, choreographer, television director, television producer, and a member of the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities...

, Michael Jeter
Michael Jeter
Michael Jeter was an American actor.- Early life :Michael Jeter was born in Lawrenceburg, Tennessee. His mother, Virginia , was a housewife...

, and Mark Linn-Baker
Mark Linn-Baker
Mark Linn-Baker is an American actor and director famous for his role as Larry Appleton on the television sitcom Perfect Strangers.-Early life and career:...

. Performed on a bare stage with the actors in modern dress, the play is a loose adaptation, with song styles ranging the globe.

Similarly, the 1992 operatic production Alice used both Alice books as its inspiration. It also employs scenes with Charles Dodgson, a young Alice Liddell, and an adult Alice Liddell, to frame the story. Paul Schmidt wrote the play, with Tom Waits
Tom Waits
Thomas Alan "Tom" Waits is an American singer-songwriter, composer, and actor. Waits has a distinctive voice, described by critic Daniel Durchholz as sounding "like it was soaked in a vat of bourbon, left hanging in the smokehouse for a few months, and then taken outside and run over with a car."...

 and Kathleen Brennan
Kathleen Brennan
Kathleen Brennan is an American musician, songwriter, record producer and artist. She was born in Johnsburg, Illinois, as noted by her husband and musical collaborator Tom Waits, in the song of the same name. Brennan and Waits met in 1980 during the filming of the Francis Ford Coppola film One from...

 writing the music. Although the original production in Hamburg
Hamburg
-History:The first historic name for the city was, according to Claudius Ptolemy's reports, Treva.But the city takes its modern name, Hamburg, from the first permanent building on the site, a castle whose construction was ordered by the Emperor Charlemagne in AD 808...

, Germany, received only a small audience, Tom Waits released the songs as the album Alice in 2002.

Works influenced



Alice and the rest of Wonderland continue to inspire or influence many other works of art to this day, sometimes indirectly via the Disney movie
Alice in Wonderland (1951 film)
Alice in Wonderland is a 1951 American animated feature produced by Walt Disney and based primarily on Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland with a few additional elements from Through the Looking-Glass. Thirteenth in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series, the film was released in New...

, for example. The character of the plucky, yet proper, Alice has proven immensely popular and inspired similar heroines in literature and pop culture, many also named Alice in homage.

See also


  • Translations of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
    Translations of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
    Lewis Carroll’s Alice's Adventures in Wonderland has been translated into many languages. Known translations, with the first date of publishing and of reprints or re-editions by other publishers, are:-See also:*Translations of Through the Looking-Glass...

  • Translations of Through the Looking-Glass
    Translations of Through the Looking-Glass
    Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There has been translated into many languages. Known translations, with the first date of publishing and of reprints or re-editions by other publishers, are:-See also:...


External links