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Gladys in Grammarland & Alice in Grammarland

Gladys in Grammarland

Two educational tales inspired by Lewis Carroll’s Wonderland

By Audrey Mayhew Allen and by Louise Franklin Bache

New edition, 2010. Illustrations by Charles Raymond Macauley. Cathair na Mart: Evertype. ISBN 978-1-904808-57-2 (paperback), price: €11.95, £10.95, $14.95.

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The two tales in this book are not related to one another, though both are responses to Lewis Carroll’s Wonderland, and both are somewhat didactic in nature.

Audrey Mayhew Allen was born in 1870, and so was about 27 years of age when she wrote Gladys in Grammarland. In this story, Gladys becomes sleepy after class and finds that a Verb Fairy has taken an interest in her education.

Louise Franklin Bache wrote several plays for the Junior Red Cross News, and later published a book Health Education in an American City. The charming Alice in Grammarland was written as a play for “Better Speech Week”, 5–8 November 1923, and “American Education Week”, 18–24 November 1923, and was published in Junior Red Cross News in that month and year. In it, Carroll’s Alice returns to meet her old friends the Hatter and the White Rabbit, together with the King and Queen of Grammarland.


ALICE: Curious! Curiouser! Curiousest! [Scrambling to feet.] No, that is all wrong, Dinah. I mean, curious, more curious, most curious. That is the most curious sight I have ever seen!

RABBIT [rushes back and forth across stage]: The Queen, the Queen! Oh, my dear paws! Oh, my fur and whiskers! She’ll have me executed as sure as cats are cats.

ALICE: [intercepts RABBIT]: I heard you mention a Queen. I’d give anything in the world to see a real Queen.

Alice in Grammarland

RABBIT [stops; looks ALICE over; spies cat, shudders; hurries off; speaks over shoulder]: Your language is wantonly extravagant. However, for your benefit I will say that no one who carries a carnivorous, domesticated quadruped is permitted to gaze at my Queen.

ALICE [rushes after RABBIT; grabs sleeve]: You use such long words I am not sure that I know what you mean. If you are by any chance speaking of my cat, I can assure you she will not mind being left at home.

RABBIT [struggling to free himself]: I speak English. If you cannot apprehend the meaning of my words, whose fault is it? [Exit RABBIT.]


HTML Michael Everson, Evertype, 73 Woodgrove, Portlaoise, R32 ENP6, Ireland, 2010-08-31

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