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The innocents abroad;: Or, The new pilgrims' progress, being some account of the steamship Quaker City's pleasure excursion to Europe and the Holy Land, Unknown Binding – 1899


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Product details

  • Unknown Binding
  • Publisher: Harper & brothers (1899)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00085ON1Y
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 26 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 14 Feb. 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book describes a group tour of "Europe and the Holy Land" Samuel Clemens experienced and reported about 100 years ago. He describes, in a way that only Mark Twain can, the people he meets and the places they go from the point of view from the American West. One memorable example of his American perspective is a comparison of Italian mountains, lakes and rivers with his beloved Rockies, Tahoe, and Mississippi. He also paints humorous portraits of the tour guides and his fellow travelers. The first time I read this book I was on an organized bus tour in Europe and quickly realized how many of Twain's human observations on how tourists are treated still apply, which makes the humor very accessible.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 24 Jun. 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is Twain when he doesn't have to worry about a bloomin' story line or consistant dialogue. He simply writes what comes to mind, and manages to debunk every so-called monument of western civ.(Just why do they call this the holy land?!) He reminds us we don't have to be a cultured snob to be a superior person. Read this before you go to Europe or after your trip. Or whenever.
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Mitchel on 31 Mar. 2004
Format: Paperback
Until reading this book I had little, even no perception of the way of life in mainland Europe in the 19th century. Yet after reading Twain's 'The Innocents Abroad' I couldn't help but feel refreshed and energised. My first thought when I got to the last page was that I had to visit the amazing places that he did 150 years ago.
I could never get bored of his sarcastic yet so true statements about the people and places he saw. I particularly enjoyed his synomonous accounts of busy and boisterous Napoli (Naples, Italy) and he really brought all the senses of what the city was like to me through the pages.
Despite being written so long ago it is suprising to see how little the world has changed apart from mass technological discovery. If all travel writers were as honest and 'frank' as Twain then I would be sure that we would all have a better judgement and sense of how the world around us really works.
A historical and cultural masterpieve written by one of America's most treasured and prized authors.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 30 Mar. 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I think Clemen's funniest extended work. He was not far removed from his newspaper work at the time, nor had he established himself as a writer nationally. I believe because of that there is a vitality to the writing and unconcern with maintaining his stature that makes Innocents a serendiptious howler of a read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 31 Aug. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As described, well packaged and promptly sent. A wise man writes an early 'travel' book. He looks at the comedic side of the human condition in a way later taken up by the likes of Bill Bryson, an acute observer trying to answer 'Why?'.
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