Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Snark from U.N.C.L.E.

Naming a child after its uncle is a bit of linguistic economy often practised by the same sort of people who give their children Roman numerals as a sort of appendage to their family names : alphanumeric folks such as Henry VII or Malcolm X.

Drawing an uncle is an entirely different matter, one simply shuts one’s eyes, grips one’s pen tightly and hopes for the best. In this case, the uncle turned out to have entirely no resemblance to the uncle of the author of these verses, Lewis Carroll, AKA the Rev. C.L. Dodgson, whose uncle’s death at the end of a rusty nail provides fascinating reading for whomever cares to follow the link below.

Elsewhere on The Hunting of the Snark …
Family & Kinship Patterns of 19th-Century British Yahoos: Avuncular Boojumery?


  1. Who knows, where your depiction of the Dear Uncle will end up one day. Henry Holiday's uncle version already may have had inspired another illustrator: Alfred Parsons. If — and the thing is wildly possible — the charge of guessing radically were ever brought against me, it would be based, I feel convinced, on my impression, that the uncle depicted by Henry Holiday ended up over Charles Darwin's fireplace.

  2. Too many uncles, not enough nephews!