On Beyond Zebra!
|1955 (renewed 1983)|
|Media type||Print (Hardcover and paperback)|
|Preceded by||Horton Hears a Who!|
|Followed by||If I Ran the Circus|
On Beyond Zebra! is a 1955 illustrated children's book by Theodor Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss. In this boundary-pushing take on the genre of alphabet book, Seuss presents, instead of the twenty-six letters of the conventional English alphabet, twenty additional letters that purportedly follow them.
The young narrator, not content with the confines of the ordinary alphabet, reports on additional letters beyond Z, with a fantastic creature corresponding to each new letter. For example, the letter "FLOOB" is the first letter in Floob-Boober-Bab-Boober-Bubs, which have large buoyant heads and float serenely in the water.
In order, the letters, followed by the creatures for which the letters are the first letter when spelling their names, are YUZZ (Yuzz-a-ma-Tuzz), WUM (Wumbus), UM (Umbus), HUMPF (Humpf-Humpf-a-Dumpfer), FUDDLE (Miss Fuddle-dee-Duddle), GLIKK (Glikker), NUH (Nutches), SNEE (Sneedle), QUAN (Quandary), THNAD (Thnadners), SPAZZ (Spazzim), FLOOB (Floob-Boober-Bab-Boober-Bubs), ZATZ (Zatz-it), JOGG (Jogg-oons), FLUNN (Flunnel), ITCH (Itch-a-pods), YEKK (Yekko), VROO (Vrooms), and HI! (High Gargel-orum).
The book ends with an unnamed letter that is substantially more complicated than those with names. A list of all the additional letters is shown at the end.
Judith and Neil Morgan, Geisel's biographers, note that most of the letters resemble elaborate monograms, "perhaps in Old Persian". These letters are not officially encoded in Unicode, but the independent ConScript Unicode Registry provides an unofficial assignment of code points in the Unicode Private Use Area for them.
Some of the animals from On Beyond Zebra! appear in the 1975 CBS TV Special The Hoober-Bloob Highway. In this segment, Hoober-Bloob babies don't have to be humans if they don't choose to be, so Mr. Hoober-Bloob shows them a variety of different animals; including ones from On Beyond Zebra! and If I Ran the Zoo (1950). Such animals include: a Jogg-oon, a Sneedle, a Zatz-it, a Wumbus, and a Yekko.
- On Beyond Zebra!. New York: Random House. 1990. ISBN 0-394-80084-2.
- Morgan & Morgan, p. 152
- "Unofficial Unicode encoding for the Seussian Latin Extensions".
- Fensch, Thomas (2001). The Man Who Was Dr. Seuss. Woodlands: New Century Books. ISBN 0-930751-11-6.
- MacDonald, Ruth (1988). Dr. Seuss. Twayne Publishers. ISBN 0-8057-7524-2.
- Morgan, Neil; Morgan, Judith Giles (1996). Dr. Seuss Mr. Geisel: a biography. New York: Da Capo Press. ISBN 978-0-306-80736-7.
- Nel, Philip (2004). Dr. Seuss: American Icon. Continuum Publishing. ISBN 0-8264-1434-6.
- Pease, Donald E. (2010). Theodor Seuss Geisel. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-532302-3.