HOWEVER, the egg only got larger and larger, and more and more human: when she had come within a few yards of it, she saw that it had eyes and a nose and mouth; and, when she had come close to it, she saw clearly that it was HUMPTY DUMPTY himself. `It ca'n't be anybody else!' she said to herself. `I'm as certain of it, as if his name were written all over his face!'
It might have been written a hundred times, easily, on that enormous face. Humpty Dumpty was sitting, with his legs crossed like a Turk, on the top of a high wall -- such a narrow one that Alice quite wondered how he could keep his balance -- and, as his eyes were steadily fixed in the opposite direction, and he didn't take the least notice of her, she thought he must be a stuffed figure, after all.
`And how exactly like an egg he is!' she said aloud, standing with her hands ready to catch him, for she was every moment expecting him to fall.
`It's very provoking,' Humpty Dumpty said after a long silence, looking away from Alice as he spoke, `to be called an egg -- very!'
`I said you looked like an egg, Sir,' Alice gently explained. `And some eggs are very pretty, you know,' she added, hoping to turn her remark into a sort of compliment.
`Some people,' said Humpty Dumpty, looking away from her as usual, `have no more sense than a baby!'
Alice didn't know what to say to this: it wasn't at all like conversation, she thought, as he never said anything
to her; in fact, his last remark was evidently addressed to a tree -- so she stood and softly repeated to
`Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall:
`That last line is much too long for the poetry,' she added, almost out loud, forgetting that Humpty Dumpty would hear her.
`Don't stand chattering to yourself like that,' Humpty Dumpty said, looking at her for the first time, `but tell me your name and your business.'
`My name is Alice, but --'
`It's a stupid name enough!' Humpty Dumpty interrupted impatiently. `What does it mean?'
`Must a name mean something?' Alice asked doubtfully.
`Of course it must,' Humpty Dumpty said with a short laugh: `my name means the shape I am -- and a good handsome shape it is, too. With a name like yours, you might be any shape, almost.'
`Why do you sit out here all alone?' said Alice, not wishing to begin an argument.
`Why, because there's nobody with me!' cried Humpty Dumpty. `Did you think I didn't know the answer to that? Ask another.'
`Don't you think you'd be safer down on the ground?' Alice went on, not with any idea of making another riddle, but simply in her good-natured anxiety for the queer creature. `That wall is so very narrow!'
`What tremendously easy riddles you ask!' Humpty Dumpty growled out. `Of course I don't think so! Why, if ever I did fall off -- which there's no chance of -- but if I did --' Here he pursed up his lips, and looked so solemn and grand that Alice could hardly help laughing. `If I did fall,' he went on, `the King has promised me -- ah, you may turn pale, if you like! You didn't think I was going to say that, did you? The King has promised me -- with his very own mouth -- to -- to --'
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