Alice’s Adventures Underground: A Reading

Lewis Carroll's manuscript of Alice's Adventures Under Ground

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  • Full Price: £20.00 Other concessions available

Charles Dance, Joanna David and Toby Jones will now be joined by Timothy Allsop, Adjoa Andoh, Grace Chilton, Charlie Higson, Miriam Margolyes and Gemma Whelan

Lewis Carroll’s exquisite manuscript book is one of the great treasures of both English literature and the British Library. Join us for a rare reading of this version, telling the story of Alice in a form close to the world-famous published version.

Carroll (Charles Dodgson) first told his story to Lorina, Alice and Edith Liddell, the young daughters of the Dean of his college, on a boat trip in 1862. The 10-year old Alice was so entranced, that she begged him to write it down for her. It took him some time to write out the tale and complete 37 illustrations. Alice finally received the 90-page book, dedicated to 'a dear child, in memory of a summer day', in November 1864. Urged by friends to publish the story, Dodgson re-wrote and enlarged it, removing some of the private family references and adding two new chapters. The published version was illustrated by the artist John Tenniel.

Many years later, Alice was forced to sell her precious manuscript at auction. It was bought by an American collector, but returned to England in 1948 when a group of American benefactors presented it to the British Library in appreciation the British people's role in the Second World War.

With musical accompaniment by Gary Carpenter.

Please note that Jane Asher is no longer able to take part in this event due to her commitments as a member of the cast of Great Expectations at West Yorkshire Playhouse.

Presented in association with Wireless Theatre

The British Library is sincerely grateful to for supplying the furniture for the reading. 


Name: Alice’s Adventures Underground: A Reading
Where: Conference Centre
The British Library
96 Euston Road
Show Map      How to get to the Library
When: -
Price: Full Price: £20.00
Friend of the BL: £16.00
Enquiries: +44 (0)1937 546546