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MARK TWAIN
(PSEUDONYM OF SAMUEL LANGHORNE CLEMENS)
American humorist and writer
(1835 - 1910)
  CHECK READING LIST (9)    << Prev Page    Displaying page 3 of 4    Next Page >> 

This is the year 1492. I am eighty-two years of age. The things I am going to tell you are things which I saw myself as a child and as a youth.
      - Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc by The Sieur Louis de Conte
        [Books (First Lines)]

Tell the truth or trump--but get the trick.
      - Pudd'nhead Wilson [Truth]

The scene of this chronicle is the town of Dawson's Landing, on the Missouri side of the Mississippi, half a day's journey, per steamboat, below St. Louis.
  In 1830 it was a snug little collection of modest one- and two-story frame dwellings whose whitewashed exteriors were almost concealed from sight by climbing tangles of rose-vines, honeysuckles and morning-glories.
      - Pudd'nhead Wilson [Books (First Lines)]

When angry, count four; when very angry, swear.
      - Pudd'nhead Wilson (ch. 10) [Anger]

As to the Adjective: when in doubt, strike it out.
      - Pudd'nhead Wilson (ch. 11) [Simplicity]

Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example.
      - Pudd'nhead Wilson (ch. 19) [Example]

Adam was but human--this explains it all. He did not want the apple for the apple's sake; he wanted it only because it was forbidden.
      - Pudd'nhead Wilson (ch. 2) [Temptation]

Whoever has lived long enough to find out what life is, knows how deep a debt of gratitude we owe to Adam, the first great benefactor of our race. He brought death into the world.
      - Pudd'nhead Wilson (ch. 3) [Death]

Training is everything. The peach was once a bitter almond; the cauliflower is nothing but cabbage with a college education.
      - Pudd'nhead Wilson (ch. 5) [Education]

Conductor, when you receive a fare,
  Punch in the presence of the passenjare.
    A blue trip slip for an eight-cent fare,
      A buff trip slip for a six-cent fare,
        A pink trip slip for a three-cent fare,
          Punch in the presence of the passenjare!
            Punch, brothers! punch with care!
              Punch in the presence of the passenjare!
      - Punch, Brothers, Punch,
        used in "Literary Nightmare" [Nonsense]

He was a very inferior farmer when he first begun . . . and he is now fast rising from affluence to poverty.
      - Rev. Henry Ward Beecher's Farm
        [Agriculture]

If the reader thinks he is done, now, and that this book has no moral to it, he is in error. The moral of it is this: If you are of any account, stay at home and make your way by faithful diligence; but if you are "no account," go away from home, and then you will have to work, whether you want to or not. Thus you become a blessing to your friends by ceasing to be a nuisance to them--if the people you go among suffer by the operation.
      - Roughing It [Books (Last Lines)]

My brother had just been appointed Secretary of Nevada Territory--an office of such majesty that it concentrated in itself the duties and dignities of Treasurer, Comptroller, Secretary of State, and Acting Governor in the Governor's absence. A salary of eighteen hundred dollars a year and the title of "Mr. Secretary," gave to the great position an air of wild and imposing grandeur. I was young and ignorant, and I envied my brother.
      - Roughing It [Books (First Lines)]

The two Great Unknowns, the two Illustrious Conjecturabilities! They are the best known unknown persons that have ever drawn breath upon the planet. (the Devil and Shakespeare.)
      - Shakespeare Dead? (ch. III) [Worth]

Tom's most well now, and got his bullet around his neck on a watch-guard for a watch, and is always seeing what time it is, and so there ain't nothing more to write about, and I am rotten glad of it, because if I'd a knowed what a trouble it was to make a book I wouldn't a tackled it, and ain't a-going to no more. But I reckon I got to light out for the Territory ahead of the rest, because Aunt Sally she's going to adopt me and sivilize me, and I can't stand it. I been there before.
      - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
        [Books (Last Lines)]

You don't know about me without you have read a book by the name of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer; but that ain't no matter. That book was made by Mr. Mark Twain, and he told the truth, mainly. There was things which he stretched, but mainly he told the truth. That is nothing. I never seen anybody but lied one time or another, without it was Aunt Polly, or the widow, or maybe Mary. Aunt Polly--Tom's Aunt Polly, she is--and Mary, and the Widow Douglas is all told about in that book, which is mostly a true book, with some stretchers, as I said before.
      - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
        [Books (First Lines)]

There was things which he stretched, but mainly he told the truth.
      - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (ch. 1)
        [Truth]

"Pilgrim's Progress," about a man that left his family it didn't say why. . . . The statements was interesting, but tough.
      - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
         (ch. 17) [Pilgrims]

All kings is mostly rapscallions.
      - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
         (ch. 23) [Royalty]

Hain't we got all the fools in town on our side? And ain't that a big enough majority in any town?
      - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
         (ch. 26) [Folly]

So endeth this chronicle. It being strictly a history of a boy, it must stop here; the story could not go much further without becoming the history of a man. When one writes a novel about grown people, he knows exactly where to stop--that is, with a marriage; but when he writes of juveniles, he must stop where he best can.
  Most of the characters that perform in this book still live, and are prosperous and happy. Some day it may seem worth while to take up the story of the younger ones again and see what sort of men and women they turned out to be; therefore it will be wisest not to reveal any of that part of their lives at present.
      - The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
        [Books (Last Lines)]

"TOM!"
  No answer.
    "TOM!"
      No answer.
        "What's gone with that boy, I wonder? You TOM!"
          No answer.
            The old lady pulled her spectacles down and looked over them about the room; then she put them up and looked out under them. She seldom or never looked through them for so small a thing as a boy; they were her state pair, the pride of her heart, and were built for "style," not service--she could have seen through a pair of stove-lids just as well. She looked perplexed for a moment, and then said, not fiercely, but still loud enough for the furniture to hear: "Well, I lay if I get hold of you I'll--"
      - The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
        [Books (First Lines)]

It is a matchless morning in rural England.
      - The American Claimant
        [Books (First Lines)]

For months the great pleasure excursion to Europe and the Holy Land was chatted about in the newspapers everywhere in America and discussed at countless firesides.
      - The Innocents Abroad (ch. 1)
        [Books (First Lines)]

They spell it Vinci and pronounce it Vinchy; foreigners always spell better than they pronounce.
      - The Innocents Abroad (ch. 19) [Spelling]


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