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Chapter One It was during the holiday week that Eddie proposed the matter. That is Eddie's way. No date, for him, is too far ahead to begin to plan anything that has vari-colored flies in it, and tents, and the prospect of the campfire smell. The very mention of these things will make his hair bristle up (rather straight, still hair it is and silvered over with premature wisdom) and put a new glare into his spectacles (rather wide, round... more...

The First Home in the Metropolis. We had never lived in New York. This fact will develop anyway, as I proceed, but somehow it seems fairer to everybody to state it in the first sentence and have it over with. Still, we had heard of flats in a vague way, and as we drew near the Metropolis the Little Woman bought papers of the train boy and began to read advertisements under the head of "Flats and Apartments to Let." I remember that we wondered... more...

THE BOOK, AND THE DREAM It was a long time ago—far back in another century—that my father brought home from the village, one evening, a brand-new book. There were not so many books in those days, and this was a fine big one, with black and gilt covers, and such a lot of pictures! I was at an age to claim things. I said the book was my book, and, later, petitioned my father to establish that claim. (I remember we were climbing... more...

INTRODUCTION. While engaged in writing the story of Evelin Delorme it was my good fortune to make the acquaintance of Dr. Herbert L. Flint, the well-known hypnotist briefly referred to in chapter three. The science of Hypnotism being a theme of absorbing interest to me, I eagerly availed myself of the opportunity thus offered for exhaustive investigation of the subject, and was accorded frequent and prolonged interviews with Dr. Flint. During... more...

THE FIRST DINNER This is the story of a year, beginning on New Year's eve. In the main it is the story of four—two artists and two writers—and of a paper which these four started. Three of them—the artists and one of the writers—toiled and dwelt together in rooms near Union Square, and earned a good deal of money sometimes, when matters went well. The fourth—the other writer—did something in an editorial way,... more...


THE FAMILY OF JOHN CLEMENS A long time ago, back in the early years of another century, a family named Clemens moved from eastern Tennessee to eastern Missouri—from a small, unheard-of place called Pall Mall, on Wolf River, to an equally small and unknown place called Florida, on a tiny river named the Salt. That was a far journey, in those days, for railway trains in 1835 had not reached the South and West, and John Clemens and his... more...

THE MEETING OF BOSEPHUS AND HORATIO   "Oh, 'twas down in the woods of the Arkansaw,And the night was cloudy and the wind was raw,   And he didn't have a bed and he didn't have a bite,And if he hadn't fiddled he'd a travelled all night." BOSEPHUS paused in his mad flight to listen. Surely this was someone playing the violin, and the tune was familiar. He listened more intently. "But he came to a cabin and an old gray man,And says... more...

HONORS FROM OXFORD Clemens made a brief trip to Bermuda during the winter, taking Twichell along; their first return to the island since the trip when they had promised to come back so soon-nearly thirty years before. They had been comparatively young men then. They were old now, but they found the green island as fresh and full of bloom as ever. They did not find their old landlady; they could not even remember her name at first, and then... more...

THE RETURN OF THE CONQUEROR It would be hard to exaggerate the stir which the newspapers and the public generally made over the homecoming of Mark Twain. He had left America, staggering under heavy obligation and set out on a pilgrimage of redemption. At the moment when this Mecca, was in view a great sorrow had befallen him and, stirred a world-wide and soul-deep tide of human sympathy. Then there had followed such ovation as has seldom been... more...

The Browning readings must have begun about this time. Just what kindled Mark Twain's interest in the poetry of Robert Browning is not remembered, but very likely his earlier associations with the poet had something to do with it. Whatever the beginning, we find him, during the winter of 1886 and 1887, studiously, even violently, interested in Browning's verses, entertaining a sort of club or class who gathered to hear his rich, sympathetic, and... more...