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With the 150th anniversary of Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland a new BBC TV programme examines his life and reviews his relationship with young girls. Towards the end of the programme an albumen photograph attributed to Carroll and in the collection of the Musee Cantini, Marseille, (click here to see it) of, allegedly, a naked teenage Lorena Liddell, the elder sister of Alice, is given as evidence of a darker interest by Carroll's in girls.
Of the photograph, conservator Nick Burnett states 'My gut instnct is it's by Lewis Carroll'. A facial recognition expert also believes it is of Lorena Carroll.
Having seen the programme I am unconvinced by the programme's claims. At best the photograph itself and provenance requires further research: simply being albumen from a glass negative and later dealer's pencil inscription is probably not sufficient to say one way or the other.
Make your own mind up and view the programme on BBC iPlayer here Available for 28 days from 31 January 2015.
Image: Presenter Martha Kearney looks at a Carroll negative from The Royal Photographic Society Collection at the National Media Museum, Bradford.
UPDATE: A leading Carroll scholar has stated he is 'unconvinced' by the programme's conclusion and notes that the size of the plate/print suggests it dates from Carroll's Christ College period by which time Lorena would have been a more mature woman.
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