Nonsense Botany and Nonsense Alphabets

Facsimile of the 1889 Edition

Edward Lear

Nonsense Botany and Nonsense Alphabets

Edward Lear

Distributed for British Library

144 pages | 162 halftones | 6 7/10 x 8 1/2 | © 2009
Cloth $29.95 ISBN: 9780712350440 Published August 2009 For sale in North and South America only

Throughout his life, Edward Lear maintained the same love for painting that caused him to be compared to Audubon at age nineteen—and later saw him give brief drawing lessons to Queen Victoria. Nonsense Botany and Nonsense Alphabets contains numerous examples of the illustrations and pictorial descriptions from Edward Lear’s incredibly imaginative reserve of plants and creatures, each with appropriate captions and lyrics. His strange botanical illustrations include the likes of Manypeeplia Upsidownia, Piggiwiggia Pyramidalis, and Pollybirdia Singularis, while the Nonsense Alphabet consists of three sets of illustrated alphabets that twist and turn around bizarrely addictive imagery and language:


A was an ape,

Who stole some white tape,

And tied up his toes,

In four beautiful bows.


Funny old Ape!


Regardless of Lear’s inspiration or impetus, these writings and their accompanying images remain adored by children and adults alike, and the more than 150 illustrations presented here testify to Lear’s enduring popularity as a heroically comic poet and serious artist.

Nonsense Botany
Nonsense Cookery
Six Nonsense Alphabets

A List of Works by Edward Lear
Review Quotes
Brad Leithauser | New York Review of Books
"These reprint volumes from the 1880s . . . . in restoring a feeling for scale, a jointed rightness of typeface and margin and drawing, Nonsense Botany and Nonsense Alphabets and Nonsense Songs and Stories, work to create a world at once fitting and weird."
For more information, or to order this book, please visit
Google preview here

Chicago Manual of Style |

RSS Feed

RSS feed of the latest books from British Library. RSS Feed