Learn about Alice Liddell


As I said in one of my previous blogs, we never got a background knowledge of Alice Liddell. I decided to do research and learn more about her so we might be able to understand the story better. Here’s what I found.

Alice was born on May 4, 1852. She was the third child of Lorina and George Liddell. Alice In 1856 the family moved to Oxford when her father, George was appointed Dean of the Christ Church College in Oxford. The Liddell family met Carroll through Christ Church College. Carroll became close with the three young girls Lorina, Alice, and Edith.

Carroll would take the three girls boating. While they were boating he told the girls stories. Carroll told stories of a young girl named Alice and her adventures after she fell down a rabbit hole. This story was Alice’s favorite. Alice asked to Carroll to write it down for her. Carroll finally finished it several months later. November 1864 Carroll gave Alice the manuscript for what was titled “Alice’s Adventures Underground.”

During publishing of the book, Alice’s mother became concerned with the close relationship between Carroll and Alice. Her mother limited access so they could not see each other.

When Alice was 20 years old, Prince Leopold arrived at Christ Church. There was a rumored romance between Alice and Leopold. But Leopold was a Prince and Alice was a “commoner” so marriage was not allowed between them.

Alice married Reginald Hargreaves in 1880 at the age of 28. Alice later had three sons. Alice named her first son Leopold and made Prince Leopold the godfather. When Prince Leopold had a daughter, he named her Alice. Two of Alice’s sons died in World War I.

When Alice’s husband died, she needed money. Alice was forced to sell the original manuscript of Alice’s Adventures Underground. When Alice was 80, she published her memoirs. Alice was quoted saying that she was “tired of being Alice in Wonderland.” Alice died on November 14 1934 at the age of 82.

I found one weird thing compared to the general Alice that we imagine. In the movie “Alice in Wonderland” Alice is blonde. But in real life, Alice had dark hair.

sources: http://www.alice-in-wonderland.net/alice1e.html


pictures: alice liddell: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Alice_Liddell_as_a_young_woman.jpg

alice: http://www.mindflare.com/celgallery/alice2m.jpg


2 Responses to “Learn about Alice Liddell”

  1. December 18, 2009 at 5:22 pm

    Morgan, one of the real strengths of your blog posts was in gathering research–I didn’t know that much about the author/character of Alice and so it really helped me understand them better.

    I appreciate that!

  2. December 18, 2009 at 5:06 pm

    Interesting to learn more about Alice. Interesting to look at her photos and imagine what kind of girl she was. Some photos make me think she is impish and some of them make me think she was strong-willed! Your post led me to look up more information about her too, and I found this poem that Lewis Carroll wrote about her that you might be interested in:

    I found it here: http://www.poets.net/2008/09/alice-pleasance-liddell-1852-1934-real.html

    “Carroll wrote an acrostic poem, which appeared in the back of Through the Looking-Glass, about Alice and that fateful trip down the Thames. The first letter in each line spells out “Alice Pleasance Liddell”:

    A Boat Beneath a Sunny Sky

    A boat beneath a sunny sky,
    Lingering onward dreamily
    In an evening of July–

    Children three that nestle near,
    Eager eye and willing ear,
    Pleased a simple tale to hear–

    Long has paled that sunny sky:
    Echoes fade and memories die.
    Autumn frosts have slain July.

    Still she haunts me, phantomwise,
    Alice moving under skies
    Never seen by waking eyes.

    Children yet, the tale to hear,
    Eager eye and willing ear,
    Lovingly shall nestle near.

    In a Wonderland they lie,
    Dreaming as the days go by,
    Dreaming as the summers die:

    Ever drifting down the stream–
    Lingering in the golden gleam–
    Life, what is it but a dream?

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