Charles Dodgson: Biographical Note

When Charles Dodgson died in 1898, my father succeeded to his rooms, which had been cleared, rather rapidly, by the College. Among the items that had been disposed of were some tiles which had surrounded the fireplace, and which were evidently the inspiration for ``The Hunting of the Snark". My father bought them back from a second-hand shop, and they have been in Christ Church ever since. I remember being taken to see them in the 1940s; they were then set in a fire screen. My father told the then occupant of the rooms---Mr Dundas, I think---that he had had them put back around the fireplace. Recently I came across two photographs, one of the fireplace by itself, and one of my father standing in front of it.

My father was an undergraduate at the time. It would have been unusual for an undergraduate to have had a don's set of rooms, but my father was a keen photographer, and, I think, secretary of the Junior Common Room, and President of the Boat Club. Dodgson had died during the Christmas Vac, and the College was evidently anxious to put his rooms to some use with the minimum of delay, and may have been glad to have them occupied by an undergraduate temporarily.

Click here to return to talk about Dodgson's thought

Click here to return to bibliography

Click here to return to home page