Charles Dodgson’s Diaries

The Private Journals of Charles Dodgson

Lewis Carroll kept a diary throughout his adult life, and although not every day is recorded, he maintained a detailed chronicle of his activities, often summarising short periods of days, or even elapsed months.

Nine volumes of his diaries have survived, covering the period 1 January 1855 to 23 December 1897. The first of these is numbered volume 2 and the last is numbered volume 13. Volumes 1, 3, 6 and 7 are missing.

Carroll's first biographer, Stuart Dodgson Collingwood, has stated in an interview that Carroll kept a diary from his 10th year. We do not know if Volume 1 covers the period from his 10th year through to 1854 or if there was a separate volume or volumes that he kept as a child and the 13 numbered volumes start when he was an adult.

Following Carroll's death in 1898, the manuscript diaries were kept by members of the Dodgson family, and were transferred to various senior members of the C.L. Dodgson Estate for safe keeping, until they were purchased by the British Library in 1969.

An edited version was published in the 1950, and the full text of all 9 surviving volumes has now been published in a richly annotated and fully indexed edition, by The Lewis Carroll Society in 10 volumes.

These pages give extensive details of the diaries and include supplementary notes to the LCS editions.

As of August 2022 the following publications are available via Devils in the Detail:
Volumes 1 to 3 and 6 to 10 of Lewis Carroll’s Diaries, described here. These can now all be found on sites such as Ebay, Amazon, Abe, Onbuy and Alibris. For example:

Further information in this section of our website: