Crossover Literature

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This is about Henry Holiday’s illustration to the final chapter of Lewis Carroll’s The Hunting of the Snark, published more than 140 years ago. This also is about Thomas Cranmer. He and the Baker (the ambivalent hero in The Hunting of the Snark) perhaps hoped that after having left their 42 articles behind, the Boojum won’t get them.

The Hunting of the Snark needs to be read at least twice. The book is an excellent example for crossover literature: Children read it as a nonsense story. It is “dark”, but funny nevertheless. However, mature readers (at age hundred-forty or so) might feel, that it ends with a reference to the burning of Thomas Cranmer in 1556.

The image serves to compare two illustrations:

  • Henry Holiday’s illustration to the chapter The Vanishing in Lewis Carroll’s The Hunting of the Snark (1876). The complete illustration is on the upper left side. A 135° couterclockwise rotated detail from that illustration has been rendered on the upper right side of this comparison image.
    Source: 1st edition of The Hunting of the Snark (April 1876).
  • Faiths Victorie in Romes Crueltie (published by Thomas Jenner, c. 1630). Immediately to the right side of the fire, Thomas Cranmer is depicted burning his hand.
    License: CC BY-SA 4.0.
    Source: Folger Digital Image Collection

The rotated detail from Henry Holiday’s illustration neither is a “claw” nor a “beak”. I assume that it depicts a fire. And there is a hand in both fires. Carroll and Holiday almost too successfully made sure that the readers of The Hunting of the Snark don’t understand that too early.

The Bandersnatched Banker

Just leaving some marks on Instragram.

#SnarkAllusion — ※ Left: The Banker after his encounter with the #Bandersnatch, depicted in an illustration (woodcut by #JosephSwain for block printing) by #HenryHoliday to the chapter "The Banker’s Fate" in #TheHuntingOfTheSnark" by #LewisCarroll (scanned from an original 1876 1st edition of the book) ※ Right: Slightly horizontally compressed rendering of "The Imagebreakers" (1566-1568) aka "Allegory of Iconoclasm" aka "The Iconoclasts", an #etching by #MarcusGheeraertsTheElder (#BritishMuseum, Dept. of Print and Drawings, 1933.1.1.3. (See also Edward Hodnett: Marcus Gheeraerts the Elder, Utrecht 1971, pp. 25-29.) Henry Holiday flipped the “nose” of Gheeraert’s “head” before using it as the Banker’s nose in his pictorial allusion to Gheeraerts’ etching. Probably not intended by Gheeraets but discovered by Holiday: Flipping the nose yields a different nose with a different shape. — I published an article about this in the “Knight Letter” 99 of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America: http://nose.snrk.de — #スナーク狩り #MarcusGheeraerts #ArtAnalysis #VictorianLiterature #VictorianIllustration #VictorianWoodcut #ReferentialArt #PictorialAllusion #LewisCarrollSociety #16thCenturyArt #16thCenturyPrint #16thCenturyEtching #19thCenturyArt #19thCenturyIllustration #UnusualArt #Bandersnatch #Reformation #Bildzitat #PictorialReference #SideBySide #Vergleich

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The Beaver’s Lesson

The Butcher reasoning with the Beaver.

This is the illustration (partially inspired by various works of other artists) to the chapter The Beaver’s Lesson.