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Jabberwocky

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’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
      Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
      And the mome raths outgrabe.

“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
      The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
      The frumious Bandersnatch!”

He took his vorpal sword in hand;
      Long time the manxome foe he sought—
So rested he by the Tumtum tree
      And stood awhile in thought.

And, as in uffish thought he stood,
      The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
      And burbled as it came!

One, two! One, two! And through and through
      The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
      He went galumphing back.

“And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?
      Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!”
      He chortled in his joy.

’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
      Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
      And the mome raths outgrabe.

Source: The Random House Book of Poetry for Children (1983)
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Jabberwocky

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  • Self-effacing, yet having an expressive critical ability; reveling in the possibilities of fancy, though thoroughly at home with the sophisticated nuances of logic and mathematics, Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson) was an individual who, through his rare and diversified literary gifts and power of communication, left an indelible mark upon the imaginations of children and adults both during his generation and in generations to come. His best-known works, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and Through the Looking-Glass, And What Alice Found There (1872) are still enjoyed by readers throughout the world and have been adapted for radio, television, and motion pictures.

    Born in the small parish of Daresbury on 27 January 1832, Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (better known by his pseudonym, Lewis Carroll) was the son of Charles Dodgson, archdeacon, and Frances Jane Lutwidge. The third of eleven children, Dodgson’s secluded, quiet, and protected early childhood stands in ironic...

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