Mark Twain

The Approaching Epidemic

One calamity to which the death of Mr. Dickens dooms this country has not awakened the concern to which its gravity entitles it. We refer to the fact that the nation is to be lectured to death and read to death all next winter, by Tom, Dick, and Harry, with poor lamented Dickens for a […]

A Telephonic Conversation

Consider that a conversation by telephone–when you are simply siting by and not taking any part in that conversation–is one of the solemnest curiosities of modern life. Yesterday I was writing a deep article on a sublime philosophical subject while such a conversation was going on in the room. I notice that one can always […]

A Helpless Situation

Once or twice a year I get a letter of a certain pattern, a pattern that never materially changes, in form and substance, yet I cannot get used to that letter–it always astonishes me. It affects me as the locomotive always affects me: I saw to myself, “I have seen you a thousand times, you […]

Italian With Grammer

I found that a person of large intelligence could read this beautiful language with considerable facility without a dictionary, but I presently found that to such a parson a grammar could be of use at times. It is because, if he does not know the were’s and the was’s and the maybe’s and the has-beens’s […]