For over 125 years John Tenniel's superb illustrations for Alice's Adventures in Wonderland have been the perfect complement to Lewis Carroll's timeless story. In that time Alice has been illustrated by numerous artists, but not one has come close to matching the universal appeal of the original pictures.
This is the first Alice to reproduce Ternniel's exquisite drawings from prints taken directly from the original wood engravings. Here, Tenniel's fine line work is far crisper, delicate shadings are reproduced with more subtlety, and details never seen before are now visible.
Like most nineteenth-century children's books, the pictures for Alice were created by transferring the artist's drawings to woodblocks, But with Alice, the original blocks served as masters from which metal plates were made for printing. Unfortunately, these plates deteriorated from the repeated pressure applied during printing, and over time, many of the fine lines in Tenniel's pictures simply vanished altogether.As the year-, passed, the original woodblocks disappeared and were believed lost; then, in 1985 they were discovered in a London bank vault.
Now, for the first time, prints from these woodblocks have been used to produce a deluxe gift edition with clearer, more detailed images than have ever been seen before. At last, readers can see the Alice that Carroll and Tenniel had originally envisioned.
For more than 130 years, children have reveled in the delightfully non-moralistic, non-educational virtues of this classic. In fact, at every turn, Alice's new companions scoff at her traditional education. The Mock Turtle, for example, remarks that he took the "regular course" in school: Reeling, Writhing, and branches of Arithmetic-Ambition, Distraction, Uglification, and Derision. Carroll believed John Tenniel's illustrations were as important as his text. Naturally, Carroll's instincts were good; the masterful drawings are inextricably tied to the well-loved story. (All ages) --Emilie Coulter