A work of fiction consists of diverse characters used by the writer to evolve the story and convey their ideas, beliefs, and concepts. The conventional use of characterization always influences the readers to correlate to the happenings taking place in the novel. Major characters in Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland are important and convey Carroll’s ideas of innocence, identity, and curiosity. In metaphorical forms, these characters play prominent roles in displaying strong personalities directly or indirectly. Here are some of the characters of the novel.
Characters in Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland
The major part of the story revolves around Alice. She is an imaginative, level-headed, curious and adventurous girl. She is pulled into an adventure when she finds herself in a strange world where she faces many challenges. She never loses her self-control. She is bold as she never gets upset, or fearful when she finds herself in Wonderland. As a human being, she is different from the beginning. Although she comes across characters who are rude and sometimes cruel, she is always polite and patient. She suffers an identity crisis when her innocent world comes into contact with the mad, illogical world of Wonderland at the beginning of the novel. Throughout the book, her character is shaped and reshaped until she discovers her true self and accepts who she is.
Character # 2
The Cheshire Cat
The Cheshire Cat is the Duchess’ pet. Alice meets him in the sixth chapter. Cheshire Cat is a unique character of the novel, as he appears and disappears at his will. Alice enjoys speaking with him though he always brings strange philosophical questions that intrigue Alice. He also teaches her the rules of Wonderland. Like most of the characters of Wonderland, he is also mad, and he accepts the flaw with pride. He tells Alice that everyone is mad in Wonderland and it’s okay if Alice’s behavior is inconsistent here. He has projected a unique character who behaves normally even when other creatures don’t.
The Queen of Hearts
She is the ruler of Wonderland. However, Alice marks her as a puzzle. Unlike others characters, her personality is a representation of rules and principles that cannot be under control. She is exceptionally short-tempered and is presented as a dominant, authoritative and violent character. She is known to issue death sentences with her famous phrase – ‘off with the head’. However, it is known that the creatures from Wonderland were never beheaded. Though she represents power, she also shows that all influential people have similar character traits of manipulating and exploiting others.
The White Rabbit
He is the first magical creature Alice meets and chases him down the rabbit hole into Wonderland. When Alice meets him again, he mistakes her for his housemaid Mary Ann as she becomes trapped in his house after growing too large. Throughout the story, he stays timid, manic and nervous and also fears the Queen of Hearts. He wears a pocket watch but remains anxious about everything. Though he disappears and watches Alice from far, he comes to her rescue in the end.
Character # 5
The King of Hearts
He is a generous character of the novel but is controlled by his wife. He never utters anything sensible or intelligent. Most of the characters in Wonderland, like him because of his kindness, generosity, and benevolence. This kindness lies in forgiving people subjected to death by his wife, the Queen of Hearts. He displays his usual compassion when Alice offends the queen. The king asks her to pardon Alice because she is an innocent child. This act of kindness wins Alice’s heart.
Character # 6
The best friend of March Hare, Mad Hatter is a unique and unusual character. He meets Alice at a tea party. He is not only a compulsive and active but also very sincere. He loves to ask riddles with no answers. He is called ‘Mad’ by the Cheshire Cat. He is courteous. Whenever he addresses Alice, he uses “my dear.” Like most of the characters in the novel, he talks gibberish, yet he is considered Alice’s friend. He is a troublemaker because he ruins Rabbit’s watch and makes another trouble when tries to fix it. He wants praise on his “unbirthday songs.” He also appreciates Alice when she praises him for his singing.
The Duchess at first comes to an unpleasant and violent personality. When she is with her cook and squealing baby, she tends to be a rude person. However, when she is in an open environment with Alice, she seems more affectionate, and her morality is unrivaled. That is why she readily attaches morality to everything no matter it makes sense or not. She is a mysterious character who switches back and forth between being violent and loving. Though the Duchess is often shown unpredictable as she doesn’t care when the baby turns into a pig, Alice feels she does have a gentle heart.
Character # 8
The Caterpillar is a unique creature, who loves to smoke. He challenges Alice further in the strange world, making her further confused, lost and overwhelmed. The Caterpillar first looks an awkward creature entirely because he is only three inches in height. It is the Caterpillar, who teaches Alice to eat the parts of mushrooms to control her size. Indirectly, he forces Alice to discover her inner self and also explains to her that changes are not always bad. He argues that one day he will become a butterfly which will be the proud moment of his life. Thus teaching Alice to accept the transformation.
She appears in the story twice, in the beginning, and by the end of the novel. While Alice is innocent enough to believe in her adventures, she is shown as a mature teenager who understands the difference between fantasy and reality. She serves as a connection between the real world and the world of fantasy.
Character # 10
Bill, the Lizard
Alice meets Bill when she eats the magical potion in the White Rabbit’s house which makes her big enough to get stuck in the house. Bill is the Lizard, whom other animals have asked to go and find out Alice. When he enters through the chimney, Alice kicks him and sends him in the air out of the chimney. Bill survives the fall and emerges at the end of the novel as one of the jury members for the trial of the Knave of Hearts.