The next moment soldiers cam
running through the wood, at
first in twos and threes, then
ten or twenty together, and at
last in such crowds that they
seemed to fill the whole forest.
Alice got behind a tree, for
fear of being run over, and watched
She thought that in all her
life she had never seen soldiers
so uncertain on their feet: they
were always tripping over something
or other, and whenever one went
down, several more always fell
over him, so that the ground
was soon covered with little
heaps of men.
Then came the horses. Having
four feet, these managed rather
better than the foot-soldiers:
but even they stumbled
now and then; and it seemed to
be a regular rule that, whenever
a horse stumbled the rider fell
off instantly. The confusion
got worse every moment, and Alice
was very glad to get out of the
wood into an open place, where
she found the White King seated
on the ground, busily writing
in his memorandum-book.
`I've sent them all!' the King
cried in a tone of delight, on
seeing Alice. `Did you happen
to meet any soldiers, my dear,
as you came through the wood?'
`Yes, I did,' said Alice: several
thousand, I should think.'
`Four thousand two hundred
and seven, that's the exact number,'
the King said, referring to his
book. `I couldn't send all the
horses, you know, because two
of them are wanted in the game.
And I haven't sent the two Messengers,
either. They're both gone to
the town. Just look along the
road, and tell me if you can
see either of them.'
`I see nobody on the road,'
`I only wish I had such
eyes,' the King remarked in a
fretful tone. `To be able to
see Nobody! And at that distance,
too! Why, it's as much as I can
do to see real people, by this
All this was lost on Alice,
who was still looking intently
along the road, shading her eyes
with one hand. `I see somebody
now!' she exclaimed at last.
`But he's coming very slowly
-- and what curious attitudes
he goes into!' (For the messenger
kept skipping up and down, and
wriggling like an eel, as he
came along, with his great hands
spread out like fans on each
`Not at all,' said the King.
`He's an Anglo-Saxon Messenger
-- and those are Anglo-Saxon
attitudes. He only does them
when he's happy. His name ia
Haigha.' (He pronounced it so
as to rhyme with `mayor.'
`I love my love with an H,'
Alice couldn't help beginning,'
because he is Happy. I hate him
with an H, because he is Hideous.
I fed him with -- with -- with
Ham-sandwiches and Hay. His name
is Haigha, and he lives -- '
`He lives on the Hill,' the
King remarked simply, without
the least idea that he was joining
in the game, while Alice was
still hesitating for the name
of a town beginning with H. `The
other Messenger's called Hatta.
I must have two, you know
-- to come and go. Once to come,
and one to go.'
`I beg your pardon?' said Alice.
`It isn't respectable to beg,'
said the King.
`I only meant that I didn't
understand,' said Alice. `Why
one to come and one to go?'
`Don't I tell you?' the King
repeated impatiently. `I must
have Two -- to fetch and carry.
One to fetch, and one to carry.'
At this moment the Messenger
arrived: he was far too much
out of breath to say a word,
and could only wave his hands
about, and make the most fearful
faces at the poor King.
`This young lady loves you
with an H,' the King said, introducing
Alice in the hope of turning
off the Messenger's attention
from himself -- but it was no
use -- the Anglo-Saxon attitudes
only got more extraordinary every
moment, while the great eyes
rolled wildly from side to side.
`You alarm me!' said the King.
`I feel faint -- Give me a ham
On which the Messenger, to
Alice's great amusement, opened
a bag that hung round his neck,
and handed a sandwich to the
King, who devoured it greedily.
`Another sandwich!' said the
`There's nothing but hay left
now,' the Messenger said, peeping
into the bag.
`Hay, then,' the King murmured
in a faint whisper.
Alice was glad to see that
it revived him a good deal. `There's
nothing like eating hay when
you're faint,' he remarked to
her, as he munched away.
`I should think throwing cold
water over you would be better,'
Alice suggested: `or some sal-volatile.'
`I didn't say there was nothing better,'
the King replied. `I said there
was nothing like it.'
Which Alice did not venture to
`Who did you pass on the road?'
the King went on, holding out
his hand to the Messenger for
some more hay.
`Nobody,' said the Messenger.
`Quite right,' said the King:
`this young lady saw him too.
So of course Nobody walks slower
`I do my best,' the Messenger
said in a sulky tone. `I'm sure
nobody walks much faster than
`He can't do that,' said the
King, `or else he'd have been
here first. However, now you've
got your breath, you may tell
us what's happened in the town.'
`I'll whisper it,' said the
Messenger, putting his hands
to his mouth in the shape of
a trumpet, and stooping so as
to get close to the King's ear.
Alice was sorry for this, as
she wanted to hear the news too.
However, instead of whispering,
he simply shouted at the top
of his voice `They're at it again!'
`Do you call that a
whisper?' cried the poor King,
jumping up and shaking himself.
`If you do such a thing again,
I'll have you buttered! It went
through and through my head like
`It would have to be a very
tiny earthquake!' thought Alice.
`Who are at it again?' she ventured
`Why the Lion and the Unicorn,
of course,' said the King.
`Fighting for the crown?'
`Yes, to be sure,' said the
King: `and the best of the joke
is, that it's my crown
all the while! Let's run and
see them.' And they trotted off,
Alice repeating to herself, as
she ran, the words of the old
`Does -- the one -- that wins --
get the crown?' she asked, as well
as she could, for the run was putting
her quite out of
`The Lion and the Unicorn
were fighting for the crown:
The Lion beat the Unicorn all round the town.
Some gave them white bread, some gave them brown;
Some gave them plum-cake and drummed them out of town.'
`Dear me, no!' said the King.
`What an idea!'
`Would you -- be good enough,'
Alice panted out, after running
a little further, `to stop a
minute -- just to get -- one's
`I'm good enough,' the
King said, `only I'm not strong
enough. You see, a minute goes
by so fearfully quick. You might
as well try to stop a Bandersnatch!'
Alice had no more breath for
talking, so the trotted on in
silence, till they came in sight
of a great crowd, in the middle
of which the Lion and Unicorn
were fighting. They were in such
a cloud of dust, that at first
Alice could not make out which
was which: but she soon managed
to distinguish the Unicorn by
They placed themselves close
to where Hatta, the other messenger,
was standing watching the fight,
with a cup of tea in one hand
and a piece of bread-and-butter
in the other.
`He's only just out of prison,
and he hadn't finished his tea
when he was sent in,' Haigha
whispered to Alice: `and they
only give them oyster-shells
in there -- so you see he's very
hungry and thirsty. How are you,
dear child?' he went on, putting
his arm affectionately round
Hatta looked round and nodded,
and went on with his bread and
`Were you happy in prison,
dear child?' said Haigha.
Hatta looked round once more,
and this time a tear or two trickled
down his cheek: but not a word
would he say.
`Speak, can't you!' Haigha
cried impatiently. But Hatta
only munched away, and drank
some more tea.
`Speak, won't you!' cried the
King. 'How are they getting on
with the fight?'
Hatta made a desperate effort,
and swallowed a large piece of
bread-and-butter. `They're getting
on very well,' he said in a choking
voice: `each of them has been
down about eighty-seven times.'
`Then I suppose they'll soon
bring the white bread and the
brown?' Alice ventured to remark.
`It's waiting for 'em now,'
said Hatta: `this is a bit of
it as I'm eating.'
There was a pause in the fight
just then, and the Lion and the
Unicorn sat down, panting, while
the King called out `Ten minutes
allowed for refreshments!' Haigha
and Hatta set to work at once,
carrying rough trays of white
and brown bread. Alice took a
piece to taste, but it was very dry.
`I don't think they'll fight
any more to-day,' the King said
to Hatta: `go and order the drums
to begin.' And Hatta went bounding
away like a grasshopper.
For a minute or two Alice stood
silent, watching him. Suddenly
she brightened up. `Look, look!'
she cried, pointing eagerly. "There's
the White Queen running across
the country! She came flying
out of the wood over yonder --
How fast those Queens can run!'
`There's some enemy after,
her no doubt,' the King said,
without even looking round. `That
wood's full of them.'
`But aren't you going to run
and help her?' Alice asked, very
much surprised at his taking
it so quietly.
`No use, no use!' said the
King. `She runs so fearfully
You might as well try to catch
a Bandersnatch! But I'll make
a memorandum about her, if you
like -- She's a dear good creature,'
he repeated softly to himself,
as he opened his memorandum-book.
`Do you spell "creature" with
a double "e"?'
At this moment the Unicorn
sauntered by them, with his hands
in his pockets. `I had the best
of it this time?' he said to
the King, just glancing at him
as he passed.
`A little -- a little,' the
King replied, rather nervously.
`You shouldn't have run him through
with your horn, you know.'
`It didn't hurt him,' the Unicorn
said carelessly, and he was going
on, when his eye happened to
fall upon Alice: he turned round
rather instantly, and stood for
some time looking at her with
an air of the deepest disgust.
`What -- is -- this?' he said
`This is a child!' Haigha replied
eagerly, coming in front of Alice
to introduce her, and spreading
out both his hands towards her
in an Anglo-Saxon attitude. `We
only found it to-day. It's as
large as life, and twice as natural!'
`I always thought they were
fabulous monsters!' said the
Unicorn. `Is at alive?'
`It can talk,' said Haigha,
The Unicorn looked dreamily
at Alice, and said `Talk, child.'
Alice could not help her lips
curing up into a smile as she
began: `Do you know, I always
thought Unicorns were fabulous
monsters, too! I never saw one
`Well, now that we have seen
each other,' said the Unicorn,
`if you'll believe in me, I'll
believe in you. Is that a bargain?'
`Yes, if you like,' said Alice.
`Come, fetch out the plum-cake,
old man!' the Unicorn went on,
turning from her to the King.
`None of your brown bread for
`Certainly -- certainly!' the
King muttered, and beckoned to
Haigha. `Open the bag!' he whispered.
`Quick! Not that one -- that's
full of hay!'
Haigha took a large cake out
of the bag, and gave it to Alice
to hold, while he got out a dish
and carving-knife. How they all
came out of it Alice couldn't
guess. It was just like a conjuring-trick,
The Lion had joined them while
this was going on: he looked
very tired and sleepy, and his
eyes were half shut. `What's
this!' he said, blinking lazily
at Alice, and speaking in a deep
hollow tone that sounded like
the tolling of a great bell.
`Ah, what is it, now?'
the Unicorn cried eagerly. `You'll
never guess! I couldn't.'
The Lion looked at Alice wearily.
`Are you animal -- vegetable
-- or mineral?' he said, yawning
at every other word.
`It's a fabulous monster!'
the Unicorn cried out, before
Alice could reply.
`Then hand round the plum-cake,
Monster,' the Lion said, lying
down and putting his chin on
this paws. `And sit down, both
of you,' (to the King and the
Unicorn): `fair play with the
cake, you know!'
The King was evidently very
uncomfortable at laving to sit
down between the two great creatures;
but there was no other place
`What a fight we might have
for the crown, now!' the
Unicorn said, looking slyly up
at the crown, which the poor
King was nearly shaking off his
head, he trembled so much.
`I should win easy,' said the
`I'm not so sure of that,'
said the Unicorn.
`Why, I beat you all round
the town, you chicken!' the Lion
replied angrily, half getting
up as he spoke.
Here the King interrupted,
to prevent the quarrel going
on: he was very nervous, and
his voice quite quivered. `All
round the town?' he said. `That's
a good long way. Did you go by
the old bridge, or the market-place?
You get the best view by the
`I'm sure I don't know,' the
Lion growled out as he lay down
again. `There was too much dust
to see anything. What a time
the Monster is, cutting up that
Alice had seated herself on
the bank of a little brook, with
the great dish on her knees,
and was sawing away diligently
with the knife. `It's very provoking!'
she said, in reply to the Lion
(she was getting quite used to
being called `the Monster').
`I've cut several slices already,
but they always join on again!'
`You don't know how to manage
Looking-glass cakes,' the Unicorn
remarked. `Hand it round first,
and cut it afterwards.'
This sounded nonsense, but
Alice very obediently got up,
and carried the dish round, and
the cake divided itself into
three pieces as she did so. `now cut
it up,' said the Lion, as she
returned to her place with the
`I say, this isn't fair!' cried
the Unicorn, as Alice sat with
the knife in her hand, very much
puzzled how to begin. `The Monster
has given the Lion twice as much
`She's kept none for herself,
anyhow,' said the Lion. `Do you
like plum-cake, Monster?'
But before Alice could answer
him, the drums began.
Where the noise came from,
she couldn't make out: the air
seemed full of it, and it rang
through and through her head
till she felt quite deafened.
She started to her feet and sprang
across the little brook in her
* * * * * * *
* * * * * *
* * * * * * *
and had just time to see the
Lion and the Unicorn rise to
their feet, with angry looks
at being interrupted in their
feast, before she dropped to
her knees, and put her hands
over her hears, vainly trying
to shut out the dreadful uproar.
`If that doesn't "drum
them out of town,"' she thought
to herself, 'nothing ever will!'