Hi everyone, I hope you are all doing okay. It is times like this that you can reflect on what matters most in the world to you, family, friends and most important, to yourself is your sanity. These are crazy times that as befallen us all, so we must make the most of what we have and cherish it with all our hearts.
I would like to share with you on how I try to keep my sanity intact. I try to keep my mind busy whether its reorganising cupboards in every room in the house, enrolling on courses, to learn new things or further educate myself in certain subjects as well as writing my blog and my first fantasy novel. And of course, watching comedy films.
I am not immune to having my bad days, where I feel down and depressed, I have my moments where I sit down and have a good cry. I try to keep busy so that I do not have too many days like that. What may work for me, may not necessarily work for you, so I would suggest trying to find what will work for you to help you get through this by any means necessary. I have found that laughter has been a key factor for my family as it has got us through some of our darkest of days, it has been our saviour.
Anyway, on with my blog. Today’s post is about the wonderfully talented, and a great imaginative mind that is of Lewis Carroll.
Who was Lewis Carroll?
Who was Lewis Carroll you might ask, well he was a fiction writer, who loved to write and use his imagination to create games from when he was a child? By the age of 20, he received a studentship at Christ Church and was appointed as a lecturer in mathematics. Although he was extremely shy, he did enjoy creating stories for children. His all-time and most famous books included Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass.
Best known by his pseudonym name, Lewis Carroll, he was born Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, to parents Frances Jane Lutwidge and Revered Charles Dodgson on 27 January 1832, in a village of Daresbury, Warrington, England. The eldest boy of eleven children, Carroll was adept at entertaining himself and his younger siblings. His father, who was a clergyman raised them in the rectory. Carroll had a happy childhood. His mother was gentle and patient, and his father, regardless of his religious beliefs tutored every one of his children and taught them to be good people.
Even though during his years at Rugby School (1846-1849) were a particularly unhappy time, he was always recognised as a good student, Carroll excelled in mathematics and won many academic prizes. In 1850 he was admitted to study further at Christ Church, Oxford, England, and would graduate in 1854. He became a mathematical lecturer in 1855 at the college. This became a permanent appointment, which not only recognised his academic skills, but it also paid him a decent pay, that required Carroll to take holy orders in the Anglican Church and for him to remain unmarried. He agreed to these terms and then was made a deacon in 1861.
Alice in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll suffered severely from a bad stammer, but he vocally found his voice when he could speak fluently to children. The young children played a significant part in inspiring his best-known work. He loved to entertain children, and it was Alice, the daughter of Henry George Liddell, who can be credited with his pinnacle inspiration and overall achievement. Alice remembers spending many hours with Carroll, listening to his stories that told fantastic tales of dream worlds.
The story fell into the hands of novelist Henry Kingsley, who urged him to publish it. The book Alice in Wonderland was released in 1865. The book gained popularity at a steady pace, and as a result, Carroll began writing a sequel. Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There (1871). By the time of his death, Alice went on to become the most popular children’s book in England, and by 1932, it had become the most popular in the world.
20 Fascinating Facts About Lewis Carroll
- Lewis Carroll was the pen name of Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, author of the children’s classics ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ and ‘Through the Looking-Glass.’
- Lewis Carroll was one of eleven children, and whilst he was growing up, he would often spend his time playing literary games with his three brothers and seven sisters.
- Lewis invented a way to write in the dark. Like a lot of writer’s, he was frustrated by losing great ideas that would come to him in the middle of the night, that is why in 1891 he invented the nyctograph. Carroll also considered it to be useful for the blind.
- He invented the Carroll Diagram (which is sometimes known as the Lewis Carroll Square), a method of grouping data, which is still taught in math lessons today.
- Carroll wrote numerous books including 11 books in mathematics, 12 literary fiction books, as well as poetry.
- Carroll would have a very rough childhood. Not only did he suffer with a stutter from an early age, which lasted throughout his life, but a childhood fever also left him deaf in one ear, and a bout of whooping cough at 17 weakened his chest for the rest of his life. Whilst later in life he had developed debilitating, aura migraines that doctors at the time diagnosed him as having epilepsy.
- Lewis Carroll suffered with ADHD.
- He was a big letter writer, sometimes he would correspond up to 2,000 times in one year, and he would occasionally write backwards, so the reader would have to hold it up to a mirror to decipher what was said.
- He was very keen on drawing as a child.
- He kept records of the letters he had sent and received, it recorded more than 98,000 letters
- Carroll had his productivity down to a science, he could write 20 words in a minute, a page of 150 words in seven minutes, and 12 pages in two and a half hours.
- He was an accomplished photographer, that started in his mid-20’s and would continue on for over two decades. Carroll had created more than 3000 photographs, that would include portraits of friends, children staged in costume and very notable figures (such as Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and Alfred, Lord Tennyson), landscapes, and stills of skeletons, dolls, statues, paintings and so much more, he even considered making a living as a photographer in the 1850’s.
- Even after all the success of Alice in Wonderland, and the only time he travelled was in 1867 on a road trip to Russia, and on the way back he stops in Poland, Germany, Belgium, and France,
- In Christ Church College at Oxford, you can find a white rabbit and Alice holding a flamingo that is immortalized in its stained glass. This was where Lewis Carroll would spend most of his life.
- Lewis Carroll had spelled out his inspiration for Alice in the last chapter of Through the Looking Glass, but throughout his life he had denied that Alice was based on a real-life person, but it was “a boat beneath a sunny sky,” poem it was at the end of Through the Looking Glass, is an acrostic which spells out Alice Pleasance Liddell.
- Lewis Carroll would often take his friend Dean Liddell’s three daughters, for days out and on boat trips on the river. It was whilst on one of these trips on 4 July 1862, during the Independence celebrations that was going on across the pond that he first told the story that would go on to become Alice in Wonderland. The story was first published in 1865.
- The Cheshire cat was inspired by cheese moulds from the Cheshire county in England, which was a dairy rich area, where “grinning like a Cheshire cat” was a popular phrase. Cheesemakers in the area would mould the cheese into a cat’s grinning face, and slice the cheese from the back, so that he would slowly disappear until the last part was consumed was the head.
- Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland has been translated into more than 70 languages.
- He became a deacon but never a priest. He was ordained as a deacon on 22, December 1861, but had to petition Dean Liddell to avoid becoming a priest.
- He was born in Daresbury 1832, and died in Guildford from pneumonia in 1898.
Thank you for stopping by and taking the time to read my blog. Have a great week and stay busy, safe and connected. see you all next week!