The Little Details
The two strange landscapes that Alice visits are Wonderland and Looking-Glass world (or land or country). The characters and events in these worlds are often mistakenly intermixed. Alice in Wonderland Trivia (AWT) uses these distinguishing guidelines: The italicized "Alice books" and "the Alices" and "Alice" refer to both of Lewis Carroll's books, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and the sequel Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There (1871). Wonderland (italics) refers to the first book and Wonderland (no italics) refers to the world of Wonderland. The same format is used for the second book: Looking-Glass (italics) refers to the book and Looking-Glass world (no italics) refers to the world of Looking-Glass. The Victorian girl-traveler Alice (no italics) is the heroine who, without italics or traveling companion, navigates these two odd destinations. Curiously, through the decades the non-italicized, no quotation marks Alice in Wonderland has come to encompass both Alice herself, the Alice books, and the landscapes of Wonderland and Looking-Glass world.
|Alice and friends. A three-color 1899 illustration by the Louisiana-born artist Blanche McManus (1870-1935).|
Planet Earth's archive of popular literature and scholarly literature about Alice in Wonderland is massive. The literature about Lewis Carroll, penname of Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (1832-1898), the 19th-century English mathematician and author of the Alice books, is equally massive. Out of this massiveness (sort of like a "much of a muchness" in Wonderland) only trivia that interests and delights AWT's solitary, aging (or ageing in England) gray-bearded compiler (John W. Perry) is included in AWT's content, nothing more, nothing less -- today, tomorrow, and yesterday.
The trivia is presented in two formats: brief, headlined text units (often illustrated) and one-sentence factlets -- fact plus the suffix let ("small one").
All illustrations are from AWT's artwork files unless credited to a different source. In the text of selected triva items, a paragraph labeled "illustration commentary" replaces the traditional below-the-image caption and provides detailed information about the displayed illustration.
Today, the ageless Alice books are the foundation of a cyberspace Alice in Wonderland world. Alice herself, if allowed to tumble into Cyberspace world, would find it as intriguing as Wonderland and Looking-Glass world and, of course, as curious.
Captions for AWT's Rotating Banner Images
There are four rotating banner images on this website. Each single image displays for a specified period of time and then changes to another image.
Alice and rabbit hole. An early 20th-century Wonderland illustration by the English illustrator Millicent Sowerby (1878-1967), published in London in 1907 and in New York in 1908. Sowerby, who also illustrated children's picture postcards, was one of the first artists commissioned to illustrate Wonderland when the book's copyright expired in England in 1907.
Alice and Queen of Hearts. Detail of a Wonderland illustration by the American illustrator Maria L. Kirk (b. 1860), published in New York in 1904. A dark-haired King of Hearts and the White Rabbit are shown in the background. The original illustration (shown) is reversed (Alice, right) on the website's banner.
Alice and Tweedledum and Tweedledee. A colored reprint of John Tenniel's original 1871 black-and-white illustration for Looking-Glass. Colored by the German-born graphic designer Fritz Kredel (1900-1973), the illustration appears in a 1946 two-volume edition of Looking-Glass and Wonderland, published in New York.
Alice and tea party. Detail of a Wonderland illustration by the English illustrator Arthur Rackham (1865-1939), published in London and New York in 1907. Rackham, who illustrated only the first Alice book, used his wife's best tableware as a model for the illustration's teacups and saucers.
Trivia word-origin factlet: The oldest linguistic ancestor of the modern word trivia (unimportant factual information) is the Medieval Latin word trivium ("place where three roads meet," a public square) that during Europe's Middle Ages (476 CE to 1453 CE) came to mean the lower division of a university course of study -- that is, grammar, rhetoric, and logic, subjects primarily of interest to undergraduate students. Source: The New Shorter Oxford English Dictionary (Oxford, 1993).