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Lewis Carroll - Author

About the 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He graduated in 1854, and in 1855 he became mathematical lecturer at the college, where he was a somewhat eccentric and withdrawn character.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.

 

Featured books by Lewis Carroll

The Macmillan Alice Postcard Book

The Macmillan Alice Postcard Book

5+ readers 7+ readers

Author: Lewis Carroll Format: Cards Release Date: 19/05/2016

The front of each card is printed in full colour, using the coloured versions of John Tenniel's iconic illustrations. The Macmillan Alice Postcard Book is a wonderful celebration of one of the best loved children's classics, from Lewis Carroll. A great gift to give or to keep for yourself!

Other books by Lewis Carroll

The Complete Alice: V&A Collector's Edition

The Complete Alice: V&A Collector's Edition

Author: Lewis Carroll, Elisabeth Murray Format: Hardback Release Date: 25/02/2021

With a a stunning cover design inspired by the iconic fashion featured in the book, this beautiful hardback edition is a special Puffin Classic created in partnership with the world-famous V & A Museum. Featuring an exclusive foreword by Elisabeth Murray, an Assistant Curator in the Fashion, Textiles and Furniture Department at the V&A. You never know where you'll find yourself in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll! On an ordinary summer's afternoon, Alice tumbles down a hole and an extraordinary adventure begins. In a strange world with even stranger characters, she meets a grinning cat and a rabbit with a pocket watch, joins a Mad Hatter's Tea Party, and plays croquet with the Queen! Lost in this fantasy land, Alice finds herself growing more and more curious by the minute . . .

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Author: Lewis Carroll Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 26/01/2021

First published in 1865, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland began as a story told to Alice Liddell and her two sisters on a boating trip in July 1862. The novel follows Alice down a rabbit-hole and into a world of strange and wonderful characters who constantly turn everything upside down with their mind-boggling logic, word play, and fantastic parodies. Like the first, this second edition includes Carroll's earlier story Alice's Adventures Under Ground, which allows readers to trace the revisions and to compare Carroll's own illustrations in the original with the famous John Tenniel illustrations for Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. This edition also includes new appendix material: George MacDonald writing on the fantastic, the eighteenth-century children's story Goody Two-Shoes, a section on film and television adaptations of Alice, and new illustrations.

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Author: Lewis Carroll Format: Hardback Release Date: 26/01/2021

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland began as a tale told by Reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson to three young girls (Lorina, Alice, and Edith Liddell) as the group took a rowing expedition up the Thames River. Enthralled by the story, Alice Liddell asked Dodgson to write it down for her, and he eventually did. In 1865, three years after their initial boat trip, Dodgson published Alice's Adventures in Wonderland under the pen name Lewis Carroll. Like its sequel, Through the Looking Glass, Alice is a story filled with imagery, symbolism, and unforgettable characters. As the critics in this volume attest, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland has sparked the imagination of countless children and adults alike, and has served as an influence to storytellers the world over. The critical essays in this volume reflect a variety of schools of criticism accompanied by notes on the contributing critics. Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland is an essential resource for those interested in the interpretations of top scholars in the literary field.

The Pamphlets of Lewis Carroll Games, Puzzles, and Related Pieces

The Pamphlets of Lewis Carroll Games, Puzzles, and Related Pieces

Author: Lewis Carroll Format: Hardback Release Date: 26/01/2021

Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, Lewis Carroll, was not only the author of the beloved Alice tales but an inveterate and talented creator of puzzles and games in both the recreational mathematics and wordplay fields. Collected together for the first time in this book, his charming and humorous creations are no longer hidden in obscure Victorian magazines, rare antiquarian books, and sporadic, incomplete collections. This fully annotated volume features such delights as Carroll's word games Doublets (word ladders) and Syzygies (a more elaborate form of the word ladder), a board game called Lanrick, and other games and puzzles, including Circular Billiards, Castle Croquet, String Wrapped Round a Cube, Backgammon variations, Mirror Writing, Arithmetical Croquet, a Number Guessing Puzzle, and much more. The volume has been edited, annotated, and compiled by Christopher Morgan, who has added a section on modern-day puzzles inspired by Carroll, and features an introduction by Jeremiah Farrell. This is a fascinating and delightful collection for lovers of wordplay, puzzles, and the wit of Lewis Carroll. Distributed for the Lewis Carroll Society of North America.

Alice's Adventures In Wonderland

Alice's Adventures In Wonderland

Author: Lewis Carroll Illustrator: Iassen Ghiuselev Format: Hardback Release Date: 22/01/2021

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Author: Lewis Carroll Illustrator: Julia Sarda Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 21/01/2021

An elegant edition of one of the best-loved stories in children's literature, complete and unabridged with over thirty full colour illustrations from Julia Sarda - illustrator of Beetle Boy and The Clockwork Sparrow. Julia's hauntingly magical pictures breathe new life into the famous tale of a bored little girl who finds herself falling into a world of bizarre creatures and whimsical riddles. This short-haired brunette in her white dress is true to the appearance of the real-life Alice who inspired the book. A gorgeous piece of art to treasure with shining embossed gold details on the cover, Julia Sarda's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland will make the perfect present for devoted Alice fans, as well as a wonderful introduction to anyone not already familiar with the story. It also makes a splendid follow-up to One Day in Wonderland, a non-fiction exploration of Lewis Carroll's life and wordplay written by Kathleen Krull and illustrated by Julia Sarda.

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Author: Lewis Carroll Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/01/2021

A set of 6 much-loved stories from classic English literature for children, brought together by Puffin Classics in beautiful paperback cover designs. On an ordinary summer's afternoon, Alice tumbles down a hole and an extraordinary adventure begins. In a strange world with even stranger characters, she meets a rabbit with a pocket watch, joins a Mad Hatter's Tea Party, and plays croquet with the Queen! Lost in this fantasy land, Alice finds herself growing more and more curious by the minute . . . In the same collection: Peter Pan The Great Adventures of Sherlock Holmes Oliver Twist Five Children and It Gulliver's Travels

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