Rare 'Alice in Wonderland' editions on display at National Library
The rarest edition of one of the best loved children's books of all time — 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' — is to go on show at the National Library of Scotland for World Book Day (March 5).
Only 22 copies of the 1865 first issue are thought to exist, and one of these, which was the author Lewis Carroll's working copy, sold at auction in New York 17 years ago for £1million.
Visitors will be able to see the Library's copy of this most sought-after edition of the book open at the title page in a special display of rare Alice books to mark the 150th anniversary of the first publication.
This first issue was withdrawn after the illustrator, John Tenniel, complained about the quality of the printed illustrations. Recipients of presentation copies were asked to return them, and only a few bound copies have survived. The Library's copy has the added attraction of being in its original red cloth binding.
'The story of Alice has delighted generations of children and we are very pleased to be able to show people where it all started by displaying one of the first ever copies of the book,' said Rare Books curator Graham Hogg.
'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' was written by Charles Lutwidge Dodgson under the pseudonym 'Lewis Carroll' and quickly became a children's classic.
Also on display will be two copies of the 1866 second edition of 'Alice'. This was the first edition sold to the public. The books will be open to show two of John Tenniel's most famous illustrations: Alice meeting the Cheshire cat and Alice at the Mad Hatter's tea party.
These rare and fascinating works will be able to be viewed in the Library's Boardroom on 5 March from 4.30 until 6.30pm.
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4 March 2015