Archived entries for snark

This from a letter written in 1880 to a not-so-little girl of nineteen: “I have a letter from you … asking me ‘Why don’t you explain the Snark?’, a question I ought to have answered long ago. Let me answer it now — ‘because I can’t.’ Are you able to explain things which you don’t yourself understand?

In our correspondence about the illustrations, the coherence and consistency of the nonsense on its own nonsensical understanding often became prominent. One of the first three I had to do was the disappearance of the Baker, and I not unnaturally invented a Boojum. Mr. Dodgson wrote that it was a delightful monster, but that it was inadmissible. All his descriptions of the Boojum were quite unimaginable, and he wanted the creature to remain so. I assented, of course, though reluctant to dismiss what I am still confident is an accurate representation. I hope that some future Darwin, in a new Beagle, will find the beast, or its remains; if he does, I know he will confirm my drawing.

The Annotated The Hunting of the Snark


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