Lewis Carroll says “Non!”

Tenniel’s “pool of tears” illustration. This part of the book is probably inspired by an incident where Dodgson and the Liddell sisters got caught in the rain on a boating excursion.

Windows into History… in Wonderland 4.

We have a connecting theme this month: Lewis Carroll (Rev. Charles Dodgson) and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.  Dodgson was not generally keen on foreign travel, preferring to spend his summers at Eastbourne or on the Isle of Wight, but in 1867 he did travel abroad on a tour of Europe with his friend Rev. Henry Liddon, with his ultimate goal to explore Russia, a country that fascinated him.  The following quote is taken from The Life and Letters of Lewis Carroll, written by Dodgon’s nephew Stuart Dodgson Collingwood and published in 1898, which contains some quotes from Dodgon’s own journal of the trip:

During the whole of this tour Mr. Dodgson kept a diary, more with the idea that it would help him afterwards to remember what he had seen than with any notion of publication. However, in later years it did occur to him that others might be interested in his impressions and experiences, though he never actually took any steps towards putting them before the public.

“The pen refuses to describe the sufferings of some of the passengers during our smooth trip of ninety minutes: my own sensations were those of extreme surprise, and a little indignation, at there being no other sensations — it was not for that I paid my money…

“We landed at Calais in the usual swarm of friendly natives, offering services and advice of all kinds; to all such remarks I returned one simple answer, ‘Non!’ It was probably not strictly applicable in all cases, but it answered the purpose of getting rid of them; one by one they left me, echoing the ‘Non!’ in various tones, but all expressive of disgust.”

Tenniel’s “pool of tears” illustration. This part of the book is probably inspired by an incident where Dodgson and the Liddell sisters got caught in the rain on a boating excursion.


If you enjoyed reading this, please consider sharing on Facebook or Twitter, to help other people find and enjoy Windows into History. You can keep updated each time I post a new entry by clicking on the follow button on the right of the screen. I welcome any comments or suggestions, and will consider guest posts.

Advertisements

About Roger Pocock

Author of windowsintohistory.wordpress.com Co-writer on junkyardview.wordpress.com Editor of frontiersmenhistorian.info
This entry was posted in 19th Century, Alice in Wonderland, Books, Britain, England, History, Memoirs, Travel and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Lewis Carroll says “Non!”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s