Monday, 27 January 2014

Bill the Lizard

Bill the Lizard, an illustration by John Vernon Lord in 
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Artists' Choice Editions, 2009.

The Text:

The twelve jurors were all writing very busily on slates. 'What are
they doing?' Alice whispered to the Gryphon. 'They can't have
anything to put down yet, before the trial's begun.'

 'They're putting down their names,' the Gryphon whispered in
reply, 'for fear they should forget them before the end of the trial.'

'Stupid things!' Alice began in a loud, indignant voice, but she
stopped hastily, for the White Rabbit cried out, 'Silence in the court!'
and the King put on his spectacles and looked anxiously round, to
make out who was talking.

Alice could see, as well as if she were looking over their shoulders,
that all the jurors were writing down 'stupid things!' on their slates,
and she could even make out that one of them didn't know how to
spell 'stupid,' and that he had to ask his neighbour to tell him. 'A
nice muddle their slates'll be in before the trial's over!' thought

One of the jurors had a pencil that squeaked. This of course, Alice
could not stand, and she went round the court and got behind him,
and very soon found an opportunity of taking it away. She did it so
quickly that the poor little juror (it was Bill, the Lizard) could not
make out at all what had become of it; so, after hunting all about for
it, he was obliged to write with one finger for the rest of the day;
and this was of very little use, as it left no mark on the slate.

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