28. Lewis Carroll. "The Mouse's Tale," 1864.
Published here in: Lewis Carroll. Alice's adventures under ground, manuscript, 1864. New York / Toronto / London: McGraw-Hill, 1966. First hard cover edition.
Information and Library Science Library Juvenile Collection. (Physical exhibit displays facsimile.)

"The mouse's tail" (/tale) is well-known from its recital at the Mad Hatter's tea party in Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland. What is not as well know is that the poem was completely different in Carroll's original manuscript, shown here. Typesetting this version proved to be too complex and/or costly, and thus he rewrote it at the printer's urging. The famous second version gives the impression, by use of smaller and smaller type size, that Alice is nodding off while listening to the mouse. Here, by contrast, the dwindling type suggests the literally dwindling mice as they are sat upon and squashed by the cat — and, of course, the whole poem curls and tapers like a mouse's tail.

- dankoster.com -