Early Books

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

By Lewis Carroll.

Illustrated by John Tenniel.

London: Macmillan and Co., 1877.

This is an example of the standard red-cloth Alice, which Macmillan produced from 1866 until 1942. Carroll and publisher Alexander Macmillan agreed that the binding for Alice should be modeled on the first edition of Charles Kingsley’s The Water Babies, which Macmillan had published in 1863. Kingsley’s book was green, but Carroll specifically asked that Alice have a red binding as “the most attractive to childish eyes.” Red was not used particularly often for binding at the time. The Macmillan Company’s conservative approach—bright cloth, with simple gilt blocking—made for a handsome, immediately recognizable cover that endured for generations.

Exhibit item 2.2