There was a table set out under a tree in front of the house, and the March
Hare and the Hatter were having tea at it: a Dormouse was sitting between
them, fast asleep, and the other two were using it as a cushion, resting their
elbows on it, and talking over its head. 'Very uncomfortable for the Dormouse,' thought Alice; 'only, as it's asleep, I
suppose it doesn't mind.' The table was a large one, but the three were all
crowded together at one corner of it: 'No room! No room!' they cried out
when they saw Alice coming. 'There's PLENTY of room!' said Alice indignantly, and she sat down in a
large arm-chair at one end of the table. 'Have some wine,' the March Hare
said in an encouraging tone. Alice looked all round the table, but there was
nothing on it but tea. 'I don't see any wine,' she remarked. 'There isn't any,' said the March Hare.
'Then it wasn't very civil of you to offer it,' said Alice angrily. 'It wasn't very
civil of you to sit down without being invited,' said the March Hare. 'I didn't know it was YOUR table,' said Alice; 'it's laid for a great many more
than three.' "You may stay if you answer my riddle." shouted the Mad Hatter.
"Why is a raven like a writing desk?" Alice felt
dreadfully puzzled. The Hatter's riddle seemed
to have no sort of meaning in it, and yet it was
certainly English. 'I don't quite understand you,'
she said, as politely as she could. 'Have you guessed the riddle yet?' the Hatter said.
'No, I give up,' Alice replied: 'what's the answer?'
'I haven't the slightest idea,' said the Hatter.
'Nor I,' said the March Hare. Alice sighed wearily. 'I think you might do
something better with the time,' she said,
'than waste it in asking riddles that have
no answers.' And she continued her walk.