On a summer afternoon boat trip in the early 1860s the Reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson told the three Liddell sisters – Lorina, Alice and Edith – a story that featured a bored little girl named Alice who goes looking for an adventure. The girls loved the story, and ten-year-old Alice asked Dodgson to write it down for her. In November of 1864, Dodgson gave Alice the handwritten manuscript of the story called Alice’s Adventures Under Ground, with his own illustrations,, dedicated as “A Christmas Gift to a Dear Child in Memory of a Summer’s Day”.
A year later on November 26, 1865, he gave the book to the world with a new title, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, published under the pseudonym Lewis Carroll. The book in which Alice falls down a rabbit hole into a world filled with outlandish anthropomorphic characters was not a big success at the time; it has since become a giant of “children’s” literature and Lewis Carroll’s language and logic have become fixtures in modern culture and literature.
“I can’t explain myself, I’m afraid, sir,” said Alice, “because I’m not myself, you see.”
“Begin at the beginning,” the King said, very gravely, “and go on till you come to the end: then stop.”
“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.
“I don’t much care where –” said Alice.
“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.”
They drew all manner of things — everything that begins with an M . . . such as mousetraps, and the moon, and memory, and muchness — you know you say things are much of a muchness.
The hurrier I go, the behinder I get.
The rule is, jam tomorrow and jam yesterday-but never jam today
Speak roughly to your little boy
and beat him when he sneezes!
he only does it to annoy,
because he knows it teases!