Alice’s Evidence

Áliss’s Évidenss

Chapter XII of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll

Chapter XII ov Áliss’s Advenchers in Wunderland, by Luiss Carrel

‘Here!’ cried Alice, quite forgetting in the flurry of the moment how large she had grown in the last few minutes, and she jumped up in such a hurry that she tipped over the jury-box with the edge of her skirt, upsetting all the jurymen on to the heads of the crowd below, and there they lay sprawling about, reminding her very much of a globe of goldfish she had accidentally upset the week before.

‘Heer!’ cryd Áliss, quyt fergeting in the flurri ov the moament how larj shi had groan in the last fue minits, and shi jumpd up in such a hurri that shi tipd oaver the joori-box with the ej ov hur scurt, upseting all the joorimen on tu the heds ov the croud biló, and thair thay lay spralling about, rimynding hur verri much ov a gloab ov goaldfish shi had axidéntelli upset the week bifor.

‘Oh, I beg your pardon!’ she exclaimed in a tone of great dismay, and began picking them up again as quickly as she could, for the accident of the goldfish kept running in her head, and she had a vague sort of idea that they must be collected at once and put back into the jury-box, or they would die.

‘O, y beg uer parden!’ shi ixclaimd in a toan ov grait dismay, and bigán piking them up agen as quikli as shi cood, for the áxident ov the goaldfish kept runing in hur hed, and shi had a vaig sort ov ydía that thay must bee colécted at wonss and poot bak íntu the joori-box, or thay wood dy.

‘The trial cannot proceed,’ said the King in a very grave voice, ‘until all the jurymen are back in their proper places – all,’ he repeated with great emphasis, looking hard at Alice as he said so.

‘The triyel cannot proceed,’ sed the King in a verri graiv voiss, ‘until all the joorimen ar bak in thair proper plaisses – all,’ hi ripeeted with grait émfeciss, looking hard at Áliss as hi sed so.

Alice looked at the jury-box, and saw that, in her haste, she had put the Lizard in head downwards, and the poor little thing was waving its tail about in a melancholy way, being quite unable to move. She soon got it out again, and put it right; ‘not that it signifies much,’ she said to herself; ‘I should think it would be quite as much use in the trial one way up as the other.’

Áliss lookd at the joori-box, and saw that, in hur haist, shi had poot the Liserd in hed dounwerds, and the poor litel thing wos waiving its tail about in a melenncoli way, beeing quyt unaibl tu muuv. Shi suun got it out agen, and poot it ryt; ‘not that it signifys much,’ shi sed tu hurself; ‘y shood think it wood bee quyt as much uess in the triyel wun way up as the uther.’

As soon as the jury had a little recovered from the shock of being upset, and their slates and pencils had been found and handed back to them, they set to work very diligently to write out a history of the accident, all except the Lizard, who seemed too much overcome to do anything but sit with its mouth open, gazing up into the roof of the court.

As suun as the joori had a litel ricuverd from the shok ov beeing upset, and thair slaits and pensels had been found and handed bak tu them, thay set tu wurk verri dílijentli tu ryt out a histeri ov the áxident, all ixept the Liserd, hu seemd tuu much oavercum tu du enithing but sit with its mouth oapen, gaising up íntu the ruuf ov the cort.

‘What do you know about this business?’ the King said to Alice.

‘Whot du ue noa about thiss bizness?’ the King sed tu Áliss.

‘Nothing,’ said Alice.

‘Nuthing,’ sed Áliss.

‘Nothing whatever?’ persisted the King.

‘Nuthing whotever?’ persisted the King.

‘Nothing whatever,’ said Alice.

‘Nuthing whotever,’ sed Áliss.

‘That’s very important,’ the King said, turning to the jury. They were just beginning to write this down on their slates, when the White Rabbit interrupted: ‘Unimportant, your Majesty means, of course,’ he said in a very respectful tone, but frowning and making faces at him as he spoke.

‘That’s verri importent,’ the King sed, turning tu the joori. Thay wur just bigíning tu ryt thiss doun on thair slaits, when the Whyt Rabit interupted: ‘Unimportent, uer Majesti meens, ov corss,’ hi sed in a verri rispectful toan, but frouning and maiking faisses at him as hi spoak.

Unimportant, of course, I meant,’ the King hastily said, and went on to himself in an undertone, ‘important – unimportant – unimportant – important –’ as if he were trying which word sounded best.

Unimportent, ov corss, y ment,’ the King haistili sed, and went on tu himself in an undertoan, ‘importent – unimportent – unimportent – importent –’ as if hi wur trying which wurd sounded best.

Some of the jury wrote it down ‘important,’ and some ‘unimportant.’ Alice could see this, as she was near enough to look over their slates; ‘but it doesn’t matter a bit,’ she thought to herself.

Sum ov the joori roat it doun ‘importent,’ and sum ‘unimportent.’ Áliss cood see thiss, as shi wos neer inuf tu look oaver thair slaits; ‘but it dusn’t mater a bit,’ shi thaut tu hurself.

At this moment the King, who had been for some time busily writing in his note-book, cackled out ‘Silence!’ and read out from his book, ‘Rule Forty-two. All persons more than a mile high to leave the court.

At thiss moament the King, hu had been for sum tym bisili ryting in his noat-book, cacld out ‘Sylenss!’ and reed out from his book, ‘Ruul Forti-tuu. All pursens mor than a myl hy tu leev the cort.

Everybody looked at Alice.

Evribodi lookd at Áliss.

I’m not a mile high,’ said Alice.

Y’m not a myl hy,’ sed Áliss.

‘You are,’ said the King.

‘Ue ar,’ sed the King.

‘Nearly two miles high,’ added the Queen.

‘Neerli tuu myls hy,’ aded the Queen.

‘Well, I shan’t go, at any rate,’ said Alice; ‘besides, that’s not a regular rule: you invented it just now.’

‘Wel, y shan’t go, at eni rait,’ sed Áliss; ‘bicyds, that’s not a régueler ruul: ue invented it just now.’

‘It’s the oldest rule in the book,’ said the King.

‘It’s the oaldest ruul in the book,’ sed the King.

‘Then it ought to be Number One,’ said Alice.

‘Then it aut tu bee Number Wun,’ sed Áliss.

The King turned pale, and shut his note-book hastily. ‘Consider your verdict,’ he said to the jury, in a low, trembling voice.

The King turnd pail, and shut his noat-book haistili. ‘Consíder uer vurdict,’ hi sed tu the joori, in a lo, trembling voiss.

‘There’s more evidence to come yet, please your Majesty,’ said the White Rabbit, jumping up in a great hurry; ‘this paper has just been picked up.’

‘Thair’s mor évidenss tu cum yet, plees uer Majesti,’ sed the Whyt Rabit, jumping up in a grait hurri; ‘thiss paiper has just been pikd up.’

‘What’s in it?’ said the Queen.

‘Whot’s in it?’ sed the Queen.

‘I haven’t opened it yet,’ said the White Rabbit, ‘but it seems to be a letter, written by the prisoner to – to somebody.’

‘Y havn’t oapend it yet,’ sed the Whyt Rabit, ‘but it seems tu bee a leter, riten by the prisener tu – tu sumbodi.’

‘It must have been that,’ said the King, ‘unless it was written to nobody, which isn’t usual, you know.’

‘It must hav been that,’ sed the King, ‘unless it wos riten tu nobodi, which isn’t uezhual, ue noa.’

‘Who is it directed to?’ said one of the jurymen.

‘Hu is it directed tu?’ sed wun ov the joorimen.

‘It isn’t directed at all,’ said the White Rabbit; ‘in fact, there’s nothing written on the outside.’ He unfolded the paper as he spoke, and added ‘It isn’t a letter, after all: it’s a set of verses.’

‘It isn’t directed at all,’ sed the Whyt Rabit; ‘in fact, thair’s nuthing riten on the outsyd.’ Hi unfoalded the paiper as hi spoak, and aded ‘It isn’t a leter, after all: it’s a set ov vursses.’

‘Are they in the prisoner’s handwriting?’ asked another of the jurymen.

‘Ar thay in the prisener’s handryting?’ askd anuther ov the joorimen.

‘No, they’re not,’ said the White Rabbit, ‘and that’s the queerest thing about it.’ (The jury all looked puzzled.)

‘No, thay’r not,’ sed the Whyt Rabit, ‘and that’s the queerest thing about it.’ (The joori all lookd puseld.)

‘He must have imitated somebody else’s hand,’ said the King. (The jury all brightened up again.)

‘Hi must hav ímitaited sumbodi elss’s hand,’ sed the King. (The joori all brytend up agen.)

‘Please your Majesty,’ said the Knave, ‘I didn’t write it, and they can’t prove I did: there’s no name signed at the end.’

‘Plees uer Majesti,’ sed the Naiv, ‘y didn’t ryt it, and thay can’t pruuv y did: thair’s no naim synd at the end.’

‘If you didn’t sign it,’ said the King, ‘that only makes the matter worse. You must have meant some mischief, or else you’d have signed your name like an honest man.’

‘If ue didn’t syn it,’ sed the King, ‘that oanli maiks the mater wurss. Ue must hav ment sum mischif, or elss ue’d hav synd uer naim lyk an ónest man.’

There was a general clapping of hands at this: it was the first really clever thing the King had said that day.

Thair wos a jenerel claping ov hands at thiss: it wos the furst rialli clever thing the King had sed that day.

‘That proves his guilt,’ said the Queen.

‘That pruuvs his gilt,’ sed the Queen.

‘It proves nothing of the sort!’ said Alice. ‘Why, you don’t even know what they’re about!’

‘It pruuvs nuthing ov the sort!’ sed Áliss. ‘Why, ue doan’t eeven noa whot thay’r about!’

‘Read them,’ said the King.

‘Reed them,’ sed the King.

The White Rabbit put on his spectacles. ‘Where shall I begin, please your Majesty?’ he asked.

The Whyt Rabit poot on his spectecls. ‘Whair shal y bigín, plees uer Majesti?’ hi askd.

‘Begin at the beginning,’ the King said gravely, ‘and go on till you come to the end: then stop.’

‘Bigín at the bigíning,’ the King sed graivli, ‘and go on til ue cum tu the end: then stop.’

These were the verses the White Rabbit read: –

Thees wur the vursses the Whyt Rabit reed: –

‘They told me you had been to her,
And mentioned me to him:
She gave me a good character,
But said I could not swim.

‘Thay toald mi ue had been tu hur,
And mentiond mi tu him:
Shi gaiv mi a good carricter,
But sed y cood not swim.

He sent them word I had not gone
(We know it to be true):
If she should push the matter on,
What would become of you?

Hi sent them wurd y had not gon
(Wi noa it tu bee tru):
If shi shood poosh the mater on,
Whot wood bicúm ov ue?

I gave her one, they gave him two,
You gave us three or more;
They all returned from him to you,
Though they were mine before.

Y gaiv hur wun, thay gaiv him tuu,
Ue gaiv uss three or mor;
Thay all riturnd from him tu ue,
Tho thay wur myn bifor.

If I or she should chance to be
Involved in this affair,
He trusts to you to set them free,
Exactly as we were.

If y or shi shood chanss tu bee
Involvd in thiss afair,
Hi trusts tu ue tu set them free,
Igzactli as wi wur.

My notion was that you had been
(Before she had this fit)
An obstacle that came between
Him, and ourselves, and it.

My noation wos that ue had been
(Bifor shi had thiss fit)
An óbstecl that caim bitween
Him, and ourselvs, and it.

Don’t let him know she liked them best,
For this must ever be
A secret, kept from all the rest,
Between yourself and me.‘

Doan’t let him noa shi lykd them best,
For thiss must ever bee
A seecrit, kept from all the rest,
Bitween uerself and mi.‘

‘That’s the most important piece of evidence we’ve heard yet,’ said the King, rubbing his hands; ‘so now let the jury –’

‘That’s the moast importent peess ov évidenss wi’v hurd yet,’ sed the King, rubing his hands; ‘so now let the joori –’

‘If any one of them can explain it,’ said Alice, (she had grown so large in the last few minutes that she wasn’t a bit afraid of interrupting him,) ‘I’ll give him sixpence. I don’t believe there’s an atom of meaning in it.’

‘If eni wun ov them can ixplain it,’ sed Áliss, (shi had groan so larj in the last fue minits that shi wosn’t a bit afraid ov interupting him,) ‘y’l giv him sixpenss. Y doan’t bileev thair’s an átem ov meening in it.’

The jury all wrote down on their slates, ‘She doesn’t believe there’s an atom of meaning in it,’ but none of them attempted to explain the paper.

The joori all roat doun on thair slaits, ‘Shi dusn’t bileev thair’s an átem ov meening in it,’ but nun ov them atempted tu ixplain the paiper.

‘If there’s no meaning in it,’ said the King, ‘that saves a world of trouble, you know, as we needn’t try to find any. And yet I don’t know,’ he went on, spreading out the verses on his knee, and looking at them with one eye; ‘I seem to see some meaning in them, after all. “– said I could not swim –” you can’t swim, can you?’ he added, turning to the Knave.

‘If thair’s no meening in it,’ sed the King, ‘that saivs a wurld ov trubl, ue noa, as wi needn’t try tu fynd eni. And yet y doan’t noa,’ hi went on, spreding out the vursses on his nee, and looking at them with wun ey; ‘y seem tu see sum meening in them, after all. “– sed y cood not swim –” ue can’t swim, can ue?’ hi aded, turning tu the Naiv.

The Knave shook his head sadly. ‘Do I look like it?’ he said. (Which he certainly did not, being made entirely of cardboard.)

The Naiv shook his hed sadli. ‘Du y look lyk it?’ hi sed. (Which hi surtenli did not, beeing maid entyrli ov cardbord.)

‘All right, so far,’ said the King, and he went on muttering over the verses to himself: ‘“We know it to be true –” that’s the jury, of course – “I gave her one, they gave him two –” why, that must be what he did with the tarts, you know –’

‘All ryt, so far,’ sed the King, and hi went on mutering oaver the vursses tu himself: ‘“Wi noa it tu bee tru –” that’s the joori, ov corss – “y gaiv hur wun, thay gaiv him tuu –” why, that must bee whot hi did with the tarts, ue noa –’

‘But, it goes on “they all returned from him to you,”’ said Alice.

‘But, it goas on “thay all riturnd from him tu ue,”’ sed Áliss.

‘Why, there they are!’ said the King triumphantly, pointing to the tarts on the table. ‘Nothing can be clearer than that. Then again – “before she had this fit –” you never had fits, my dear, I think?’ he said to the Queen.

‘Why, thair thay ar!’ sed the King triyúmfentli, pointing tu the tarts on the taibl. ‘Nuthing can bee cleerer than that. Then agen – “bifor shi had thiss fit –” ue never had fits, my deer, y think?’ hi sed tu the Queen.

‘Never!’ said the Queen furiously, throwing an inkstand at the Lizard as she spoke. (The unfortunate little Bill had left off writing on his slate with one finger, as he found it made no mark; but he now hastily began again, using the ink, that was trickling down his face, as long as it lasted.)

‘Never!’ sed the Queen fueriassli, throing an inkstand at the Liserd as shi spoak. (The unforchunet litel Bil had left of ryting on his slait with wun fingger, as hi found it maid no mark; but hi now haistili bigán agen, uesing the ink, that wos tricling doun his faiss, as long as it lasted.)

‘Then the words don’t fit you,’ said the King, looking round the court with a smile. There was a dead silence.

‘Then the wurds doan’t fit ue,’ sed the King, looking round the cort with a smyl. Thair wos a ded sylenss.

‘It’s a pun!’ the King added in an offended tone, and everybody laughed. ‘Let the jury consider their verdict,’ the King said, for about the twentieth time that day.

‘It’s a pun!’ the King aded in an ofended toan, and evribodi lafd. ‘Let the joori consíder thair vurdict,’ the King sed, for about the twentiith tym that day.

‘No, no!’ said the Queen. ‘Sentence first – verdict afterwards.’

‘No, no!’ sed the Queen. ‘Sentenss furst – vurdict afterwerds.’

‘Stuff and nonsense!’ said Alice loudly. ‘The idea of having the sentence first!’

‘Stuf and nónsenss!’ sed Áliss loudli. ‘The ydía ov having the sentenss furst!’

‘Hold your tongue!’ said the Queen, turning purple.

‘Hoald uer tung!’ sed the Queen, turning purpl.

‘I won’t!’ said Alice.

‘Y woan’t!’ sed Áliss.

‘Off with her head!’ the Queen shouted at the top of her voice. Nobody moved.

‘Of with hur hed!’ the Queen shouted at the top ov hur voiss. Nobodi muuvd.

‘Who cares for you?’ said Alice, (she had grown to her full size by this time.) ‘You’re nothing but a pack of cards!’

‘Hu cairs for ue?’ sed Áliss, (shi had groan tu hur fool sys by thiss tym.) ‘Ue’r nuthing but a pak ov cards!’

At this the whole pack rose up into the air, and came flying down upon her; she gave a little scream, half of fright and half of anger, and tried to beat them off, and found herself lying on the bank, with her head in the lap of her sister, who was gently brushing away some dead leaves that had fluttered down from the trees upon her face.

At thiss the hoal pak roas up íntu the air, and caim flying doun upon hur; shi gaiv a litel screem, haf ov fryt and haf ov angger, and tryd tu beet them of, and found hurself lying on the bank, with hur hed in the lap ov hur sister, hu wos jentli brushing away sum ded leevs that had fluterd doun from the trees upon hur faiss.

‘Wake up, Alice dear!’ said her sister; ‘Why, what a long sleep you’ve had!’

‘Waik up, Áliss deer!’ sed hur sister; ‘Why, whot a long sleep ue’v had!’

‘Oh, I’ve had such a curious dream!’ said Alice, and she told her sister, as well as she could remember them, all these strange Adventures of hers that you have just been reading about; and when she had finished, her sister kissed her, and said, ‘It was a curious dream, dear, certainly: but now run in to your tea; it’s getting late.’ So Alice got up and ran off, thinking while she ran, as well she might, what a wonderful dream it had been.

‘O, y’v had such a cueriass dreem!’ sed Áliss, and shi toald hur sister, as wel as shi cood rimember them, all thees strainj Advenchers ov hurs that ue hav just been reeding about; and when shi had finishd, hur sister kissd hur, and sed, ‘It wos a cueriass dreem, deer, surtenli: but now run in tu uer tee; it’s geting lait.’ So Áliss got up and ran of, thinking whyl shi ran, as wel shi myt, whot a wunderful dreem it had been.

But her sister sat still just as she left her, leaning her head on her hand, watching the setting sun, and thinking of little Alice and all her wonderful Adventures, till she too began dreaming after a fashion, and this was her dream: –

But hur sister sat stil just as shi left hur, leening hur hed on hur hand, woching the seting sun, and thinking ov litel Áliss and all hur wunderful Advenchers, til shi tuu bigán dreeming after a fation, and thiss wos hur dreem: –

First, she dreamed of little Alice herself: – once again the tiny hands were clasped upon her knee, and the bright eager eyes were looking up into hers – she could hear the very tones of her voice, and see that queer little toss of her head, to keep back the wandering hair that would always get into her eyes – and still as she listened, or seemed to listen, the whole place around her became alive with the strange creatures of her little sister’s dream.

Furst, shi dreemd ov litel Áliss hurself: – wonss agen the tyni hands wur claspd upon hur nee, and the bryt eeger eys wur looking up íntu hurs – shi cood heer the verri toans ov hur voiss, and see that queer litel toss ov hur hed, tu keep bak the wondering hair that wood aulways get íntu hur eys – and stil as shi licend, or seemd tu licen, the hoal plaiss eround hur bicaim alyv with the strainj creechers ov hur litel sister’s dreem.

The long grass rustled at her feet as the White Rabbit hurried by – the frightened Mouse splashed his way through the neighbouring pool – she could hear the rattle of the teacups as the March Hare and his friends shared their never-ending meal, and the shrill voice of the Queen ordering off her unfortunate guests to execution – once more the pig-baby was sneezing on the Duchess’ knee, while plates and dishes crashed around it – once more the shriek of the Gryphon, the squeaking of the Lizard’s slate-pencil, and the choking of the suppressed guinea-pigs, filled the air, mixed up with the distant sobs of the miserable Mock Turtle.

The long grass ruceld at hur feet as the Whyt Rabit hurried by – the frytend Mouss splashd his way thru the naibering puul – shi cood heer the ratel ov the teecups as the March Hair and his frends shaird thair never-ending meel, and the shril voiss ov the Queen ordering of hur unforchunet gests tu execuetion – wonss mor the pig-baibi wos sneesing on the Duchess’ nee, whyl plaits and dishes crashd eround it – wonss mor the shreek ov the Grifen, the squeeking ov the Liserd’s slait-pensel, and the choaking ov the supréssd gini-pigs, fild the air, mixd up with the dístent sobs ov the miserebl Mok Turtel.

So she sat on, with closed eyes, and half believed herself in Wonderland, though she knew she had but to open them again and all would change to dull reality – the grass would be only rustling in the wind, and the pool rippling to the waving of the reeds – the rattling teacups would change to tinkling sheep-bells, and the Queen’s shrill cries to the voice of the shepherd boy – and the sneeze of the baby, the shriek of the Gryphon, and all the other queer noises, would change (she knew) to the confused clamour of the busy farm-yard – while the lowing of the cattle in the distance would take the place of the Mock Turtle’s heavy sobs.

So shi sat on, with cloasd eys, and haf bileevd hurself in Wunderland, tho shi nue shi had but tu oapen them agen and all wood chainj tu dul rialiti – the grass wood bee oanli rusling in the wind, and the puul ripling tu the waiving ov the reeds – the ratling teecups wood chainj tu tincling sheep-bels, and the Queen’s shril crys tu the voiss ov the sheperd boy – and the snees ov the baibi, the shreek ov the Grifen, and all the uther queer noises, wood chainj (shi nue) tu the confuesd clamer ov the bisi farm-yard – whyl the loing ov the catel in the dístenss wood taik the plaiss ov the Mok Turtel’s hevi sobs.

Lastly, she pictured to herself how this same little sister of hers would, in the after-time, be herself a grown woman; and how she would keep, through all her riper years, the simple and loving heart of her childhood: and how she would gather about her other little children, and make their eyes bright and eager with many a strange tale, perhaps even with the dream of Wonderland of long ago: and how she would feel with all their simple sorrows, and find a pleasure in all their simple joys, remembering her own child-life, and the happy summer days.

Lastli, shi piccherd tu hurself how thiss saim litel sister ov hurs wood, in the after-tym, bee hurself a groan woomen; and how shi wood keep, thru all hur ryper yeers, the simpl and luving hart ov hur chyldhood: and how shi wood gather about hur uther litel children, and maik thair eys bryt and eeger with meni a strainj tail, perhaps eeven with the dreem ov Wunderland ov long ago: and how shi wood feel with all thair simpl sorroas, and fynd a plezher in all thair simpl joys, rimembering hur oan chyld-lyf, and the hapi sumer days.