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Did Carroll propose to Alice Liddell?

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  • oldjoesoap
    Anne Clark says in her book that Alice s descendants believe that an offer of marriage was made by Dodgson and rejected. Surprisingly she does not seem to
    Message 1 of 95 , Sep 1, 2009
      Anne Clark says in her book that Alice's descendants believe that an offer of marriage was made by Dodgson and rejected. Surprisingly she does not seem to provide any reference. It seems unlikely that the claim was made by Alice's son, Caryl Hargreaves - at least not publicly. Morton Cohen (Lewis Carroll - a biography) does not mention any such claim having been made. Both writers appear to believe that Dodgson did have romantic intentions towards Alice but both agree that it is inconceivable that Dodgson would actually have suggested marriage to Alice herself. The reason they give is that Dodgson, true to his role of Victorian gentleman, would have never have transgressed the rules of etiquette in such a way. The trouble with this is that Dodgson did break etiquette rules on occasion, when it suited him so to do. Both Cohen and Clarke accept that the A.L. in the diary entry can only refer to Alice Liddell (rather than, for instance, Aunt Lucy), although Dodgson does not normally use this abbreviation for Alice L.
      J

      --- In lewiscarroll@yahoogroups.com, Arne Moll <arnemail@...> wrote:
      ........................................................................................
      > Finally, you recommend Anne Clark's 'The Real Alice' to us for
      > reading. Well, I think it's likely that the people you're discussing
      > this with, have already read this book more than once and also the
      > other literature on the Alice-Dodgson relationship. I've just looked
      > up my copy of the book and here's what Anne Clark actually writes about it
      >
      > "This close link between his anxieties about Wilfred's courtship and
      > his own relationship with Alice Liddell is a strong argument for
      > concluding that he was romantically attached to her and that
      > matrimony was what he wanted. (...) Certainly Alice's descendants
      > were under the impression that Dodgson had asked for Alice's hand
      > (...) Oxford rumour, too, insisted that he was a suitor who had been rejected."
      >
      > I'm not sure what Anne Clark 'exposes' here, as you claim she did.
      > She's just listing arguments for a possible conclusion (and rather
      > weak ones they are too: Oxford gossip, who exactly were 'Alice's
      > descendants' and how did they get their information; how do we know
      > A.L. stands for Alice Liddell, etc.), but even apart from the value
      > of the arguments, as far as I know she doesn't actually draw that
      > conclusion herself. In my opinion, your statement that your story is
      > confirmed by Anne Clark's book is misleading, since as far as I can
      > see, she doesn't really conclude what you're claiming she does.
      > ...........................................................................
      > Arne
    • Michael Everson
      ... I saw it on TV. It looked like Mars. Michael Everson * http://www.evertype.com/
      Message 95 of 95 , Sep 23, 2009
        On 23 Sep 2009, at 14:15, Deb wrote:

        > Having lived through the apocalyptic dust storm that blew fine red
        > dust all over Sydney, I now know what the White Knight meant by the
        > wind being as strong as soup!

        I saw it on TV. It looked like Mars.

        Michael Everson * http://www.evertype.com/
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