Tag Archives: Lewis Carroll

WS Gilbert’s Nonsense Poems

W.S. Gilbert never really wrote Nonsense; his Bab Ballads and other collections, while obviously influenced by Edward Lear ― especially in the strongly caricatural style of the pictures accompanying his poems in the early editions – are rather in the … Continue reading

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Gustave Verbeek’s Cruel Tales and the Nonsense Tradition

[I wrote this short article for The Upside-Down World of Gustave Verbeek: The Complete Sunday Comics 1903-1905, edited by Peter Maresca, foreword by Martin Gardner. Palo Alto, CA: Sunday Press Books, 2009, where it appeared under the title "Verbeek's Loony Lyrics … Continue reading

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Unnatural History Lessons

The early newspaper comic supplements used a wide variety of materials to fill their pages, among them alphabets — which could be put to several uses: satiric or purely nonsensical — seem to have been particularly appreciated. Here is an … Continue reading

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Weekend Reading

Here are some links to articles on Edward Lear and nonsense for your weekend reading: Francesca Bombassei Gonella. “‘Everything’s Got a Moral, If Only You Can Fint It’: Modernità, interculturalità e sovversione del canone nella letteratura vittoriana per l’infanzia: Lewis … Continue reading

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Children’s Books for Christmas 1871

Sing-Song: a Nursery-rhyme Book. By Christina G. Rossetti. With 120 Illustrations by Arthur Hughes. Routledge. The Princess and the Goblin. By George Macdonald. Strahan. Through the Looking-glass, and what Alice saw there. By the Author of Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland. … Continue reading

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Edward Lear and Phonetics

John Well’s phonetic blog discusses what we can learn on Victorian pronunciation from Edward Lear’s limericks. The Opinionator NY Times blog suggests that Victorian naturalists might be a model for some of Lear’s most famous characters: The Brittle-Stars Danced. The … Continue reading

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The Day of the Wombat

Peacay of BibliOdyssey posts “some delightful scratchy illustrations from the 1962 book by Ruth Park, ‘The Adventures of the Muddle-headed Wombat’” in honour of Australia Day. So here is my homage. Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s lament for the death of his … Continue reading

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Mr Leer, Humpty Dumpty and Finnegan

There is an interesting article in the the London Review of Books (vol. 32, no. 24, 16 December 2010), “Quashed Quotatoes,” in which Michael Wood reviews a new edition of James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake. The opening paragraphs discuss Joyce’s debt … Continue reading

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The Frog and the Duck: A Romance

George du Maurier “took, in 1869-1870, a brief Darwinian respite from his usual labors of satirizing the Victorian drawing room” and, among other things, produced an “unusually extensive and charmingly anthropomorphic picture-story” (Kunzle 293), which appeared in three fortnightly instalments … Continue reading

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A Game of Croquet without Rules

Published in Harper’s Young People June 30, 1885

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