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Some background on

the enchanting story of

Alice in Wonderland

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Alice's Adventures in Wonderland is a work of children's
literature by the British mathematician and author Reverend
Charles Lutwidge Dodgson under the pseudonym Lewis Carroll.

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland tells the story of a girl
named Alice who falls down a rabbit-hole into a world of fantasy.

The tale is fraught with satirical allusions to Dodgson's friends
and to the lessons that British schoolchildren were expected to

The Wonderland described in the tale plays with logic in ways
that has made the story of lasting popularity with children as well as

The book is often referred to by the abbreviated title Alice in
Wonderland. This alternate title was popularized by the numerous
film and television adaptations of the story produced over the years.

History of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Illustration by Arthur RackhamAlice was first published on July
4, 1865, exactly three years after Reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson
and Reverend Robinson Duckworth rowed in a boat up the River
Thames with three little girls:

The journey had started at Folly Bridge near Oxford, England and
ended five miles away in a village of Godstow. To while away time
the Reverend Dodgson told the girls a story that, not so
coincidentally, 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 eventually did so and in February 1863 gave
Alice the first cript of Alice's Adventures Under Ground.

This original script was probably destroyed later by Dodgson
himself when he printed a more elaborate copy by hand, illustrated it,
and presented it to Alice as a Christmas present on 26 November 1864.

He also gave a copy of Alice's Adventures Under Ground to his
friend and mentor George MacDonald, whose children loved it.
On MacDonald's advice, Dodgson decided to submit Alice for
publication. He expanded the 18,000-word manuscript to 35,000
words, most notably adding the episodes about the Cheshire Cat
and the Mad Tea-Party. In 1865, Dodgson's tale was published
as Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by "Lewis Carroll" with
illustrations by John Tenniel. The first print run of 2,000 was
shelved because Tenniell had objections over the print quality;
but a new edition, released in December of the same year but
carrying an 1866 date, was quickly printed.

The entire print run sold out quickly. Alice was a publishing
sensation, beloved by children and adults alike, and it has never
been out of print since. There have now been over a hundred
editions of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, as well as
countless adaptations in other media, especially theater and film.

The Plot

A girl named Alice is bored while on a picnic with her sister.
She finds interest in a white rabbit, dressed in a waistcoat and
muttering "I'm late!", whom she follows down a rabbit-hole. She
drops into a dream underworld of paradox, the absurd and the
improbable. As she attempts to follow the rabbit, she has several
misadventures. She grows to gigantic size and shrinks to half her
original height; meets a group of small animals stranded in a sea
of her own tears; gets trapped in the rabbit's house; meets a
baby, which changes into a pig, and a cat, which disappears; goes
to a never-ending tea party; plays croquet with an
anthropomorphised deck of cards; goes to the shore and meets a
Gryphon and a Mock Turtle; and attends the courtroom trial of the
Knave of Hearts, who has been accused of stealing some tarts.
Eventually Alice wakes up underneath a tree back with her sister.


Chapter 1 -- Down the Rabbit-Hole
Chapter 2 -- The Pool of Tears
Chapter 3 -- A Caucus-Race and a Long Tale
Chapter 4 -- The Rabbit Sends in a Little Bill
Chapter 5 -- Advice From a Caterpillar
Chapter 6 -- Pig and Pepper
Chapter 7 -- A Mad Tea-Party
Chapter 8 -- The Queen's Croquet-Ground
Chapter 9 -- The Mock Turtle's Story
Chapter 10 -- The Lobster-Quadrille
Chapter 11 -- Who Stole the Tarts?
Chapter 12 -- Alice's Evidence

Characters in order of appearance

Alice's Sister
The White Rabbit
The Mouse
The Duck
The Dodo
The Lory
The Eaglet
Bill the Lizard
The Caterpillar
The Fish-Footman
The Frog-Footman
The Duchess
The Baby
The Cook
The Cheshire Cat
The March Hare
The Hatter
The Dormouse
Two, Five & Seven (cards)
The King of Hearts
The Queen of Hearts
The Knave of Hearts
The Gryphon
The Mock Turtle
The Jurymen

See Also:  List of Fictional Rabbits

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