"And "the wabe' is the grass plot round a sundial, I suppose?" said Alice, surprised at her own ingenuity.

"Of course it is. It's called "wabe,' you know because it goes a long way before it, and a long way behind it --"

"And a long way beyond it on each side," Alice added.

"Exactly so."

By Lewis Carroll
from Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There, 1872

WABE (derived from the verb to SWAB or SOAK) "The side of a hill" (from its being soaked by the rain).


Carroll's definition, printed in 1855, cited by The Annotated Alice

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