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The Wizard of Oz and Who He Was

Martin Gardner

Publication Year: 2012

When Russel B. Nye and Martin Gardner teamed up to bring out a new edition of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, theirs was the first critical analysis of L. Frank Baum American classic. The book opens with an essay by Nye, entitled "An Appreciation," which is an overview of Baum's creative and imaginative genius. Nye explores the reasons why earlier critics virtually ignored the Oz stories. Gardner, in his essay, "The Royal Historian of Oz," presents a brief biographical sketch, revealing little-known facts about this prolific writer. The volume also contains the complete, original text of the Wonderful Wizard of Oz, along with many original illustrations by artist W. W. Denslow. 

Published by: Michigan State University Press

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pp. vii-viii

The editors wish to thank the following persons: Frank J. Baum, son of L. Frank Baum, for supplying numerous details about his father's life; Roland Baughman, head of the special collections department, Columbia University Libraries, for additions to the bibliography and for his great generosity in loaning a copy of ...

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pp. ix-xiv

In 1957 popular culture was not yet an acceptable academic discipline: a Pulitzer prize-winning scholar would, in those days, have been expected to concern himself with weightier matters. Russel Nye, however, was a different kind of scholar, a scholar whose Jeffersonian political ideals extended beyond politics into a popular ...

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An Appreciation

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pp. 1-18

YEARS from now," the New York Times predicted in 1919 at the death of Lyman Frank Baum, "though the children cannot clamor for the newest Oz book, the crowding generations will plead for the old ones." More than a half century after Dorothy, the Wizard, and their friends were introduced to the ...

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The Royal Historian of Oz

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pp. 19-46

AMERICA'S greatest writer of children's fantasy was, as everyone knows except librarians and critics of juvenile literature, L. Frank Baum. His Wonderful Wizard of Oz has long been the nation's best known, best loved native fairy tale, but you will look in vain for any recognition of this fact in recent histories...

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

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pp. 47-52

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FOLK lore, legends, myths and fairy tales have followed childhood through the ages, for every healthy youngster has a wholesome and instinctive love for stories fantastic, marvelous and manifestly unreal. The winged fairies of Grimm and Andersen have brought more happiness to childish hearts than all other human creations. ...

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I. The Cyclone

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pp. 55-58

DOROTHY lived in the midst of the great Kansas prairies, with Uncle Henry, who was a farmer, and Aunt Em, who was the farmer's wife. Their house was small, for the lumber to build it had to be carried by wagon many miles. There were four walls, a floor and a roof, which made one room; and this room contained ...

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II .The Council with the Munchkins

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pp. 59-66

SHE was awakened by a shock, so sudden and severe that if Dorothy had not been lying on the soft bed she might have been hurt. As it was, the jar made her catch her breath and wonder what had happened; and Toto put his cold little nose into her face and whined dismally. Dorothy sat up and noticed that the...

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III. How Dorothy Saved the Scarecrow

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pp. 67-72

WHEN Dorothy was left alone she began to feel hungry. So she went to the cupboard and cut herself some bread, which she spread with butter. She gave some to Toto, and taking a pail from the shelf she carried it down to the little brook and filled it with clear, sparkling water. Toto ran over to the trees and began to ...

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IV. The Road Through the Forest

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pp. 73-78

AFTER a few hours the road began to be rough, and the walking grew so difficult that the Scarecrow often stumbled over the yellow brick, which were here very uneven. Sometimes, indeed, they were broken or missing altogether, leaving holes that Toto jumped across and Dorothy walked around. As for the Scarecrow, ...

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V. The Rescue of the Tin Woodman

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pp. 79-86

WHEN Dorothy awoke the sun was shining through the trees and Toto had long been out chasing birds and squirrels. She sat up and looked around her. There was the Scarecrow, still standing patiently in his corner, waiting for her. "We must go and search for water," she said to him. ...

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VI. The Cowardly Lion

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pp. 87-90

ALL this time Dorothy and her companions had been walking through the thick woods. The road was still paved with yellow brick, but these were much covered by dried branches and dead leaves from the trees, and the walking was not at all good. There were few birds in this part of the forest, for birds love ...

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VII. The Journey to the Great Oz

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pp. 91-96

THEY were obliged to camp out that night under a large tree in the forest, for there were no houses near. The tree made a good, thick covering to protect them from the dew, and the Tin Woodman chopped a great pile of wood with his axe and Dorothy built a splendid fire that warmed her and made her feel less lonely. ...

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VIII. The Deadly Poppy Field

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pp. 97-102

OUR little party of travellers awakened next morning refreshed and full of hope, and Dorothy breakfasted like a princess off peaches and plums from the trees beside the river. Behind them was the dark forest they had passed safely through, although they had suffered many discouragements; but before them was a lovely, sunny country that seemed to beckon them on ...

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IX. The Queen of the Field-Mice

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pp. 103-108

WE CANNOT be far from the road of yellow brick, now," remarked the Scarecrow, as he stood beside the girl, "for we have come nearly as far as the river carried us away." The Tin Woodman was about to reply when he heard a low growl, and turning his head (which worked beautifully on hinges) ...

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X. The Guardian of the Gates

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pp. 109-116

IT WAS some time before the Cowardly Lion awakened, for he had lain among the poppies a long while, breathing in their deadly fragrance; but when he did open his eyes and roll off the truck he was very glad to find himself still alive. "I ran fast as I could," he said, sitting down and yawning; "but ...

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XI. The Wonderful Emerald City of Oz

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pp. 117-126

EVEN with eyes protected by the green spectacles Dorothy and her friends were at first dazzled by the brilliancy of the wonderful City. The streets were lined with beautiful houses all built of green marble and studded everywhere with sparkling emeralds. They walked over a pavement of the same green marble, and where ...

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XII. The Search for the Wicked Witch

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pp. 127-138

THE soldier with the green whiskers led them through the streets of the Emerald City until they reached the room where the Guardian of the Gates lived. This officer unlocked their spectacles to put them back in his great box, and then he politely opened the gate for our friends. "Which road leads to the Wicked Witch of the West?" asked ...

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XIII. The Rescue

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pp. 139-142

THE Cowardly Lion was much pleased to hear that the Wicked Witch had been melted by a bucket of water, and Dorothy at once unlocked the gate of his prison and set him free. They went in together to the castle, where Dorothy's first act was to call all the Winkies together and tell them that they were no longer slaves. ...

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XIV. The Winged Monkeys

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pp. 143-148

YOU will remember there was no road - not even a pathway between - the castle of the Wicked Witch and the Emerald City. When the four travellers went in search of the Witch she had seen them coming, and so sent the Winged Monkeys to bring them to her. It was much harder to find their way back through the big ...

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XV. The Discovery of Oz, the Terrible

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pp. 149-158

THE four travellers walked up to the great gate of the Emerald City and rang the bell. After ringing several times it was opened by the same Guardian of the Gates they had met before. "What! are you back again?" he asked, in surprise. "Do you not see us?" answered the Scarecrow. "But I thought you had gone to visit the Wicked Witch of the West." ...

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XVI. The Magic Art Of the Great Humbug

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pp. 159-162

NEXT morning the Scarecrow said to his friends: "Congratulate me. I am going to Oz to get my brains at last. When I return I shall be as other men are." "I have always liked you as you were," said Dorothy, simply. "It is kind of you to like a Scarecrow," he replied. "But surely you will think more of me when you hear the splendid thoughts ...

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XVII. How the Balloon Was Launched

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pp. 163-166

FOR three days Dorothy heard nothing from Oz. These were sad days for the little girl, although her friends were all quite happy and contented. The Scarecrow told them there were wonderful thoughts in his head; but he would not say what they were because he knew no one could understand them but himself. ...

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XVIII. Away to the South

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pp. 167-170

DOROTHY wept bitterly at the passing of her hope to get home to Kansas again; but when she thought it all over she was glad she had not gone up in a balloon. And she also felt sorry at losing Oz, and so did her companions. The Tin Woodman came to her and said, "Truly I should be ungrateful if I failed to mourn for the man ...

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XIX. Attacked by the Fighting Trees

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pp. 171-174

THE next morning Dorothy kissed the pretty green girl goodbye, and they all shook hands with the soldier with the green whiskers, who had walked with them as far as the gate. When the Guardian of the Gates saw them again he wondered greatly that they could leave the beautiful City to get into new trouble. But he at once unlocked their spectacles, which he put back into the ...

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XX. The Dainty China Country

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pp. 175-180

WHILE the Woodman was making a ladder from wood which he found in the forest Dorothy lay down and slept, for she was tired by the long walk. The Lion also curled himself up to sleep and Toto lay beside him. The Scarecrow watched the Woodman while he worked, and said to him: ...

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XXI. The Lion Becomes the King of Beasts

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pp. 181-184

AFTER climbing down from the china wall the travellers found themselves in a disagreeable country, full of bogs and marshes and covered with tall, rank grass. It was difficult to walk far without falling into muddy holes, for the grass was so thick that it hid them from sight. However, by carefully picking their ...

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XXII. The Country of the Quadlings

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pp. 185-188

THE four travellers passed through the rest of the forest in safety, and when they came out from its gloom saw before them a steep hill, covered from top to bottom with great pieces of rock. "That will be a hard climb," said the Scarecrow, "but we must get over the hill, nevertheless." ...

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XXIII. The Good Witch Grants Dorothy’s Wish

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pp. 189-192

BEFORE they went to see Glinda, however, they were taken to a room of the Castle, where Dorothy washed her face and combed her hair, and the Lion shook the dust out of his mane, and the Scarecrow patted himself into his best shape, and the Woodman polished his tin and oiled his joints. When they were all quite presentable they followed the soldier ...

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XXIV. Home Again

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pp. 193-194

AUNT Em had just come out of the house to water the cabbages when she looked up and saw Dorothy running toward her. "My darling child!" she cried, folding the little girl in her arms and covering her face with kisses; "where in the world did you come from?" "From the Land of Oz," said Dorothy, gravely. "And here is Toto, too. And oh, Aunt Em! I'm so glad to be at home again!"

Notes and Bibliography

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pp. 195-208

E-ISBN-13: 9781609172596
Print-ISBN-13: 9780870133664

Page Count: 220
Publication Year: 2012