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The Wit and Wisdom of Mark Twain: A Book of Quotations (Dover Thrift Editions) Paperback – 29 Oct 1999


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Product details

  • Paperback: 64 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications Inc.; New edition edition (29 Oct 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0486406644
  • ISBN-13: 978-0486406640
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 12.7 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 242,265 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

Mark Twain is the pseudonym of Samuel Langhorne Clemens (1835 - 1910). He was born and brought up in the American state of Missouri and, because of his father's death, he left school to earn his living when he was only twelve. He was a great adventurer and travelled round America as a printer; prospected for gold and set off for South America to earn his fortune. He returned to become a steam-boat pilot on the Mississippi River, close to where he had grown up. The Civil War put an end to steam-boating and Clemens briefly joined the Confederate army - although the rest of his family were Unionists! He had already tried his hand at newspaper reporting and now became a successful journalist. He started to use the alias Mark Twain during the Civil War and it was under this pen name that he became a famous travel writer. He took the name from his steam-boat days - it was the river pilots' cry to let their men know that the water was two fathoms deep.

Mark Twain was always nostalgic about his childhood and in 1876 The Adventures of Tom Sawyer was published, based on his own experiences. The book was soon recognised as a work of genius and eight years later the sequel, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, was published. The great writer Ernest Hemingway claimed that 'All modern literature stems from this one book.'

Mark Twain was soon famous all over the world. He made a fortune from writing and lost it on a typesetter he invented. He then made another fortune and lost it on a bad investment. He was an impulsive, hot-tempered man but was also quite sentimental and superstitious. He was born when Halley's Comet was passing the Earth and always believed he would die when it returned - this is exactly what happened.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Laura De Giorgio TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 18 Dec 2011
Format: Paperback
Enjoy few quotes from this humorous book, then go and buy a copy:

ADVERTISING

During his days as a journalist, the young Mark Twain once edited a small newspaper in Missouri. A subscriber wrote in, saying that he had found a spider in his paper and asked whether this was a sign of good or bad uck. Twain answered:

"Dear Subscriber: Finding a spider in your paper was neither good luck nor bad luck for you. The spider was merely looking over our paper to see which merchant is not advertising so that he can go to that store, spin his web across the door and lead a life of undisturbed peace ever afterward."

ADVICE

It is beter to give than receive - especially advice. Mark Twain was always willing to donate free advice to the needy and the unsuspecting. "It's notble to be good", he said, "and it's nobler to teach others to be good, and less trouble."

Whenever you find that you are on the side of majority, it is time to reform (- or pause and reflect).

BELIEFS

If the man doesn't believe as we do, we say he is a crank, and that settles it. I mean, it does nowadays, because now we can't burn him.

SURGERY

Mark Twain offered this advice on the proper state of mind for undergoing surgery: "Console yourself with the reflection that you are giving the doctor pleasure, and that he is getting paid for it."

INSULTS

When Mark Twain disapproved of someone, he was not likely to keep it a secret. A remark he made on hearing of the death of an annoying person is typical:

"He has done a thing for me which I wouldn't even have done for myself. If he will only stay dead now I will call the account square and drop the grudge I bear him."
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By zed on 9 Dec 2010
Format: Paperback
Fantastic! I would advise to everyone to have this book at home. It always cheers me up. If you feel down the weather, the best remedy is Mark Twain's quotations.Best of luck!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Pieter Uys HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on 28 April 2003
Format: Hardcover
This cute little book was bound with handcraft methods and contains lovely illustrations by Gary Undercuffer. It is an excellent collection of humorous and uplifting quotations, the funny and the profound side by side, gathered from his novels, short works, letters and speeches. These sources include Joan of Arc, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, A Tramp Abroad, Huckleberry Finn, Life on the Mississippi, The Gilded Age, Europe and Elsewhere, Letters From The Earth and Elsewhere and others. Twain's observations are timeless and often very witty, as in the quote: "Classic: A book which people praise and don't read." Besides its novelty value to collectors as a miniature edition, I think this little book makes an excellent gift.
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By dave42 on 8 Sep 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Samuel Langhorne Clements aka Mark twain was a brilliant observer of life and all its quirkiness.He wrote as he saw and through him we can see life as it was on the Mississippi river in his time. Twain was a keen critic of most things ridiculous,and of politics and politicians,for whom he had little regard.This book is well titled and is indeed chock full of Wit and much Wisdom.Buy it and enjoy every page
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Little introductory book, lovely quotes. Nice as a short introduction to Twain. Am now reading Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn.
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