Alice in Wonderland is one of the highest works of universal literature, and has adapted not only to plays, but has also been taken to cinema.
A classic tale full of magic
It is a tale created by Lewis Carroll, an Anglican clergyman, and featuring the writer’s most notable characters, including the Cheshire cat, the hatter, the blue caterpillar, or the white rabbit.
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However, Alicia, the protagonist of the story’s adventures, did exist in real life, and she was the one who inspired Carroll to create the story and herself to whom she gave the manuscript of her tale with illustrations of her own hand.
Carroll, apart from being a clergyman and photographer, and liked to photograph girls while distracting them with some tale or riddle, of course, with the consent of his parents. And it is that, beyond his hypothetical and controversial paedophilia, the truth is that Carroll was caught up in Alice Liddell, either in filial or platonic form.
Alice, the inspiration for the famous tale or, at least, to whom she is dedicated, was born in the year 1852 and died in 1934. As a child she had contact with Carroll and was one of the models in his photographs.
Little Alice, around 1862, as she was walking with her sisters, asked Carroll to tell them a story, and she recounted to them the adventure of little Alice, which fell into a rabbit’s lair and then went through the adventures we know now. The little girl liked it so much that she asked Carroll to write it, to which she agreed.
It has been suggested that at some point the writer asked for Alice’s hand from her father, which would have been denied to her. True or not, the truth is that Carroll’s relationship with the Liddell family ended abruptly into the mid-1960s.
In later times Alice and Carroll corresponded and some rather sporadic encounters, though no less cold.
In 1880 Alice married Reginald Gervis, with whom she had three children and became a high society woman. Later her husband died and she was forced to sell the manuscript that Carroll gave her, and for which she earned 15,400 pounds, a fortune for the time. Towards the end of her life she expressed her feeling of living under the sign of Alice in Wonderland.