Lewis Carroll - Author Picture

Lewis Carroll - Author

Lewis Carroll was born Charles Lutwidge Dodgson on January 27, 1832, the eldest son and third of eleven children born to Frances Jane Lutwidge and the Reverend Charles Dodgson. Carroll had a happy childhood. His mother was patient and gentle, and his father, despite his religious duties, tutored all his children and raised them to be good people. Carroll frequently made up games and wrote stories and poems, some of which were similar to his later published works, for his seven sisters and three brothers.

He was educated at Richmond School in Yorkshire, Rugby School and Christ Church, Oxford. Although his years at Rugby School (1846–49) were unhappy, he was recognized as a good student, and in 1850 he was admitted to further study at Christ Church, Oxford.

He graduated in 1854, and in 1855 he became mathematical lecturer at the college, where he was a somewhat eccentric and withdrawn character. This permanent appointment, which not only recognized his academic skills but also paid him a decent sum, required Carroll to take holy orders in the Anglican Church and to remain unmarried. He agreed to these requirements and was made a deacon in 1861.

Carroll loved to entertain children, and it was Alice, the young daughter of Henry George Liddell, Dean of Christ Church, who can be credited with his pinnacle inspiration. Alice Liddell remembers spending many hours with Carroll, sitting on his couch while he told fantastic tales of dream worlds. During an afternoon picnic with Alice and her two sisters, Carroll told the first iteration of what would later become Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. When Alice arrived home, she exclaimed that he must write the story down for her.

He fulfilled the small girl's request, and through a series of coincidences, the story fell into the hands of the novelist Henry Kingsley, who urged Carroll to publish it. The book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland was released in 1865. It gained steady popularity, and as a result, Carroll wrote the sequel, Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There, which contained the nonsense poem classic The Jabberwocky (1871). By the time of his death, Alice had become the most popular children's book in England, and by 1932 it was one of the most popular in the world.

Unlike most of the children's books of the day, Alice and through the Looking Glass did not attempt to convey obvious moral lessons. Nor did they contain what critics have tried to insist are there—hidden meanings relating to religion or politics. They are delightful adventure stories in which a normal, healthy, clearheaded little girl reacts to the "reality" of the adult world. Their appeal to adults as well as to children lies in Alice's intelligent response to ridiculous language and action.

Carroll published several other nonsense works, including The Hunting of the Snark (1876), Sylvie and Bruno (1889), and Sylvie and Bruno Concluded (1893). He also wrote a number of pamphlets poking fun at university affairs, which appeared under a fake name or without any name at all, and he composed several works on mathematics under his true name. In 1881 Carroll gave up his lecturing to devote all of his time to writing.

Lewis Carroll died of bronchitis in his sister's home in Guildford on 14 July, 1898.

If you like Lewis Carroll you might also like to read books by J. R. R. Tolkien.

Featured Books, with extracts, by Lewis Carroll

The Complete Alice Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There
Lewis Carroll
Julia Eccleshare's Book of the Month, July 2015 The classic stories of Alice and her journeys into Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass are celebrating 150 years in...
Lovereading Price: £22.50 - Saving £7.50 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 04/07/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll
This is the perfect story of Alice to share with younger readers. Tony Ross has done a great job in the retelling for a younger audience and the book is full of his delightfully humourous illustrations too. Building a love...
Lovereading Price: £5.99 - Saving £2.00 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 02/07/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll
This beautiful board is the perfect first introduction to Alice. Babies and toddlers will love the playful and quirky characters Alison Jay brings to life with her own unique perspective whilst encapsulating the zany other-worldness of Carroll's novel.
Lovereading Price: £5.99 - Saving £2.00 (25%) Format: Board book | Released 01/07/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (150th Anniversary Edition with Dame Vivienne Westwood)
Lewis Carroll
From her catwalk shows inspired by the Mad Hatter's Tea Party to her world famous twisted take on Britishness, Dame Vivienne Westwood has always seen the world through the looking glass. Now she has illustrated her favourite children's story by...
Lovereading Price: £11.25 - Saving £3.75 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 02/04/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll
A lovely hardback edition to celebrate the 150th Anniversary of this world famous children's classic. A book that's chock full of great conversations between Alice and some extraordinary animals, ranging from the pipe-smoking caterpillar and the Mad Hatter, to the...
Lovereading Price: £9.74 - Saving £3.25 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 02/04/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll
Award-winning Anthony Browne, a former Children's Laureate, adds some fresh touches to the classic story of Alice, the little girl finds herself in the middle of the most amazing new adventure when she falls down a rabbit hole. Anthony Browne's...
Lovereading Price: £11.24 - Saving £3.75 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 05/03/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll
Celebrating 150 years of Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. One of the most imaginative and best-loved of all children's books, Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland is as...
Lovereading Price: £3.74 - Saving £1.25 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 26/02/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland: the Little Folks' Edition
Lewis Carroll
The attractive small-sized format of this Little Folks Edition makes it a perfect gift for young readers. It includes 32 colour illustrations by Sir John Tenniel which bring Carroll's...
Lovereading Price: £7.49 - Saving £2.50 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 26/02/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

The Nursery Alice
Lewis Carroll
Adapted especially for younger readers by Lewis Carroll himself, this version is the perfect introduction to his magical story. The original edition, of which this is a reproduction, was...
Lovereading Price: £9.74 - Saving £3.25 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 26/02/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Through the Looking-Glass
Lewis Carroll
Celebrating 150 years of Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Alice's second adventure takes her through the looking-glass to a place even curiouser than Wonderland. She finds herself caught...
Lovereading Price: £3.74 - Saving £1.25 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 26/02/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland: Panorama Pops
Lewis Carroll
Ten of the best moments from Lewis Carroll's classic story unfold from this attractive edition which is beautifully presented in a slip-case. It has been designed to celebrate the 150 anniversary of the publication of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland which...
Lovereading Price: £3.75 - Saving £1.25 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 06/01/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice in Wonderland: Down the Rabbit Hole
Lewis Carroll
A picture book adventure based on Lewis Carroll's original story of Alice's fall down the rabbit hole and the extraordinary experiences she had there – including growing and shrinking...
Lovereading Price: £5.24 - Saving £1.75 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 01/01/2015 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll
Winner of the 1999 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal A wonderful 150th-anniversary edition of Lewis Carroll's timeless classic, illustrated by Helen Oxenbury in this beautiful award-winning interpretation. Full of the most wondrous wit and humour, wonderful magic and believable nonsense,...
Lovereading Price: £5.99 - Saving £2.00 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 04/12/2014 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland: Macmillan Classics Edition
Lewis Carroll
One of the most imaginative and best-loved of all children's books, Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland is as original today as it was when it was first published in 1865. The stories of the amazing things Alice finds after...
Lovereading Price: £8.24 - Saving £2.75 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 09/10/2014 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Through the Looking Glass: Macmillan Classics Edition
Lewis Carroll
Lewis Carroll's follow-up to Alice's Adventures through the Looking Glass includes the introduction of Tweedledum and Tweedledee those most memorable of characters who famously fought over a brand new rattle. It is here, too, that the poem Jabberwocky first appeared...
Lovereading Price: £8.24 - Saving £2.75 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 09/10/2014 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice Through the Looking Glass
Lewis Carroll
Lewis Carroll's enduring classic tale, which has enchanted readers of all ages for more than a hundred years, is brought alive for a new generation in this exquisite picture book by the highly-regarded illustrator Emma Chichester Clark. She has carefully...
Lovereading Price: £5.99 - Saving £2.00 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 05/06/2014 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll
One of the most imaginative and best-loved of all children's books, Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland is as original today as it was when it was first published in 1865. The stories of the amazing things Alice finds after...
Lovereading Price: £9.74 - Saving £3.25 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 01/03/2013 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll
The story of Alice's fall down the rabbit hole and the extraordinary experiences she has there is one of the best known of all the classics. Everything is Wonderland is curious and different; there's the Mad Hatter's Tea Party, the...
Lovereading Price: £4.49 - Saving £1.50 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 02/08/2012 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

The Nursery Alice (illustrated by Sir John Tenniel)
Lewis Carroll
The first colour illustrations for Lewis Carroll's classic story are stunningly reproduced in this edition. The Nursery Alice was adapted by Lewis Carroll himself to make a shorter and simpler version than the original for much younger readers. To the...
Lovereading Price: £9.74 - Saving £3.25 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 05/02/2010 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Illustrated by Robert Ingpen)
Lewis Carroll
The classic story of how Alice falls down the rabbit hole and enters a strange topsy-turvy world in which nothing it quite what it seems to be is given a dreamy, soft focus in Robert Ingpen's illustrations. What Alice finds...
Lovereading Price: £12.74 - Saving £4.25 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 01/09/2009 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice Through the Looking Glass - Illustrated Edition
Lewis Carroll
A favourite book chosen by Philip Pullman, along with Alice's Adventures in Wonderland: "Indispensable. The great classic beginning of English children's literature". Stepping through the Looking Glass, Alice enters a second wonderful adventure. Here she meets the White Queen and...
Lovereading Price: £7.49 - Saving £2.50 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 01/06/2009 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures In Wonderland
Lewis Carroll
How Alice falls down the rabbit hole and the extraordinary world where nothing is quite as it at first seems, is a classic children's book whose influence has been felt for over a century. This unabridged edition is beautifully produced...
Lovereading Price: £3.74 - Saving £1.25 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 05/03/2009 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures In Wonderland - Illustrated by Helen Oxenbury
Lewis Carroll
Abundantly illustrated with warmth and humour by Helen Oxenbury, the memorable cast of characters are to be found in all their glory here in this edition, from Alice herself to the White Rabbit, the Mad Hatter and the Cheshire Cat. ...
Lovereading Price: £7.49 - Saving £2.50 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 02/03/2009 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice In Wonderland (slipcase edition)
Lewis Carroll
The story is timeless and can be read at so many different levels, but this lavish slipcased edition is quite simply stunning and will bring to the reader a very different Wonderland - even more fantastical and a little darker...
Lovereading Price: £14.99 - Saving £5.00 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 01/10/2008 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures In Wonderland (with an Introduction by Chris Riddell)
Lewis Carroll
A book that's chock full of great conversations between Alice and some extraordinary animals, ranging from the pipe-smoking caterpillar and the Mad Hatter, to the March Hare and the...
Lovereading Price: £5.24 - Saving £1.75 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 28/02/2008 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures In Wonderland
Lewis Carroll
A favourite chosen by Philip Pullman: "Indispensable. The great classic beginning of English children's literature." For over one hundred years Carroll's classic story of logic and lunacy has delighted young and old alike and many illustrators have turned their hand...
Lovereading Price: £7.49 - Saving £2.50 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 05/08/2005 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (illustrated by Helen Oxenbury)
Lewis Carroll
Winner of the 1999 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal Full of the most wondrous wit and humour, wonderful magic and believable nonsense, this particular edition has the most stunning illustrations that complement the imaginative story that's anything but dull. The...
Lovereading Price: £7.49 - Saving £2.50 (25%) Format: Paperback | Released 08/05/2001 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

Alice In Wonderland
Lewis Carroll
Full of the most wondrous wit and humour, wonderful magic and believable nonsense, this particular edition has the most stunning illustrations that complement the imaginative story that's anything but dull. The story is timeless and can be read at so...
Lovereading Price: £11.24 - Saving £3.75 (25%) Format: Hardback | Released 04/10/1999 Info Extract Wishlist Compare price Buy

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