Lewis Carroll

From the novel Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There (1871), by Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (1832-1898), a.k.a. Lewis Carroll.

In The Annotated Alice, critic Martin Gardner writes: “Few would dispute the fact that Jabberwocky is the greatest of all nonsense poems in English. It was so well known to English schoolboys in the late nineteenth century that five of its nonsense words appear casually in the conversation of students in Rudyard Kipling’s Stalky & Co. Alice herself, in the paragraph following the poem, puts her finger on the secret of the poem’s charm: ‘…it seems to fill my head with ideas—only I don’t know exactly what they are.’ Although the strange words have no precise meaning, they chime with subtle overtones

“Jabberwocky” remains world famous, having been translated (in Gardner’s estimate) into at least fifty languages. It is one of the few short poems ever to have inspired a major motion picture (Jabberwocky, 1977, by Monty Python’s Terry Gilliam):