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ID 114146
Title Alternative
‘Wabe,’ ‘Gyre’ and ‘Gimble’ in ‘Jabberwocky’ in Through the Looking-Glass
Author
Content Type
Departmental Bulletin Paper
Description
This essay examines some unusual words in the poem ‘Jabberwocky’ in Through the Looking-Glass by Lewis Carroll. During her talk with Humpty Dumpty, Alice quickly guesses the complicated meaning of ‘wabe’ in ‘Jabberwocky.’ He acknowledges Alice’s guess and they continue the conversation. This reflects the actual situation of Carroll’s first story-telling on a boat in the famous ‘golden afternoon’ with the three Liddell girls. It is usually assumed that Carroll created the Alice stories by himself but those stories may have been inspired by his talk with the Liddell girls. Building on Alice’s role in composing the Alice books, Lewis Padgett’s short story “Mimsy were the Borogoves” makes Alice Liddell the real author of ‘Jabberwocky.’ In fact, the assumption that Carroll is the only creator of the Alice books might derive from films such as Dreamchild and from Carroll’s own words in such poems as ‘All in the golden afternoon’ and ‘A boat, beneath a sunny sky.’ Readers are likely to be influenced by the author’s own words. For example, the pronunciations of ‘gyre’ is not fixed because Carroll’s direction to make the ‘g’ hard in ‘gyre’ contradicts the soft sound of ‘g’ in ‘gyroscope’ mentioned by Humpty Dumpty. When based on the explanation by Humpty Dumpty, we should make the ‘g’ soft in ‘gyre.’ However, ‘gyre’ is pronounced as both [dʒaɪər] and [ɡaɪər] depending on reader preference. Japanese translations of ‘Jabberwocky’ also vary according to the translator’s consciousness of the desirable pronunciation of ‘gyre’ and ‘gimble,’ i.e. [dʒaɪər] and [ɡɪmbl]. Japanese equivalents of ‘gyre’ and ‘gimble’ should be determined by paying attention to the words, ‘gyroscope’ and ‘gimblet,’ the origins of ‘gyre’ and ‘gimble.’
Journal Title
Journal of Language and Literature
ISSN
2433345X
NCID
AA12844300
Publisher
徳島大学総合科学部
Volume
27
Start Page
13
End Page
48
Sort Key
2
Published Date
2019-12-24
EDB ID
FullText File
language
jpn
TextVersion
Publisher
departments
Integrated Arts and Sciences