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Showing: 11-20 results of 20

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...

PREFATORY NOTE Certain happenings as recorded in this work will be found to differ materially from the same incidents and episodes as set down in the writings of Mr. Clemens himself. Mark Twain's spirit was built of the very fabric of truth, so far as moral intent was concerned, but in his earlier autobiographical writings—and most of his earlier writings were autobiographical—he made no real pretense to accuracy of time, place, or... 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...

MARK TWAIN AT FORTY In conversation with John Hay, Hay said to Clemens: "A man reaches the zenith at forty, the top of the hill. From that time forward he begins to descend. If you have any great undertaking ahead, begin it now. You will never be so capable again." Of course this was only a theory of Hay's, a rule where rules do not apply, where in the end the problem resolves itself into a question of individualities. John Hay did as great... more...

THE LECTURER It was not easy to take up the daily struggle again, but it was necessary.—[Clemens once declared he had been so blue at this period that one morning he put a loaded pistol to his head, but found he lacked courage to pull the trigger.]—Out of the ruck of possibilities (his brain always thronged with plans) he constructed three or four resolves. The chief of these was the trip around the world; but that lay months ahead,... more...

MARK TWAIN A BIOGRAPHY I ANCESTORS On page 492 of the old volume of Suetonius, which Mark Twain read until his very last day, there is a reference to one Flavius Clemens, a man of wide repute "for his want of energy," and in a marginal note he has written: "I guess this is where our line starts." It was like him to write that. It spoke in his whimsical fashion the attitude of humility, the ready acknowledgment of shortcoming, which was his... more...