Alice: through the pages

Explore some of the most memorable illustrated editions of 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' and 'Through the Looking Glass' in the V&A's collection.

'What is the use of a book,' thought Alice, 'without pictures or conversations?'

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Chapter 1

Lewis Carroll’s Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There (1871) would not have become two of the world's best-loved books without John Tenniel's charming illustrations. The books were unusual at the time for their sheer number of illustrations – 42 in Alice's Adventures and 50 in Looking-Glass. They proved an immediate success. Since then, the power of Alice's story has inspired countless artists and illustrators to re-imagine Wonderland for new generations. Whether enticed by Carroll's characters, intrigued by new translations, or encouraged by Tenniel's success, the world's top illustrators have chosen to re-imagine Alice in their own style. Each new edition brings a different take on Lewis Carroll's classic story, ensuring the books' enduring popularity for over 150 years.

See how artist Kristjana S. Williams created a series of new illustrations for the V&A book, Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser:

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Find out more about John Tenniel.

Header image: Alice in the White Rabbit's house from 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' by Lewis Carroll. Illustrated by Willy Pogany. V&A National Art Library: Pressmark 861.AA.5166