Lewis Carroll and Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
by Arthur Mee, J. A. Hammerton
The proper name of Lewis Carroll was Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, and he was born at Daresbury, England, on January 27, 1832. Educated at Rugby and at Christchurch, Oxford, he specialised in mathematical subjects. Elected a student of his college, he became a mathematical lecturer in 1855, continuing in that occupation until 1881. His fame rests on the children's classic, "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland," issued in 1865, which has been translated into many languages. No modern fairy-tale has approached it in popularity. The charms of the book are its unstrained humour and its childlike fancy, held in check by the discretion of a particularly clear and analytical mind. Though it seems strange that an authority on Euclid and logic should have been the inventor of so diverting and irresponsible a tale, if we examine his story critically we shall see that only a logical mind could have derived so much genuine humour from a deliberate attack on reason, in which a considerable element of fun arises from efforts to reconcile the irreconcilable. The book has probably been read as much by grown-ups as by young people, and no work of humour is more heartily to be commended as a banisher of care. The original illustrations by Sir John Tenniel are almost as famous as the book itself.