Pudd'nhead Wilson

picture courtesy of "Mark Twain in His Times"

Quarles Home, Florida, MO
(source of inspiration)
"We called her 'Aunt' Hannah, Southern fashion. She was superstitious, like the other Negros; also, like them, she was deeply religious. Like them, she had great faith in prayer and employed it in all ordinary exigencies, but not in cases where a dead certainty of result was urgent." Autobiography, 6

Hannibal, MO
(source of inspiration)
"Yet kindhearted and compassionate as she [Clemens's mother] was, I think she was not conscious that slavery was a bald, grotesque and unwarrented usurpation...Manifestly, training and association can accomplish strange miracles." Autobiography, 32

"If the threat to sell an incorrigible slave 'down the river' would not reform him, nothing would--his case was past cure." Autobiography, 33

"Villa Viviani", Florence, Italy
(site of actual writing)
"I know a few Italian words and several phrases, and along at first I used to keep them bright and fresh by whetting them on Angelo; but he partly couldn't understand them and partly didn't want to." Autobiography, 350

"I finished 'Those Extraordinary Twins' night before last...the last third of it suits me to a dot. I begin, to-day, to entirely re-cast and re-write the first two thirds--new plan, with two minor characters made very prominent, one major character dropped out, and the Twins subordinated to a minor but not insignificant place. The minor character will now become the chiefest, and I will name the story after him--'Pudd'nhead Wilson'."
letter to Fred J. Hall, 12.12.1892, Florence, Italy, as quoted in Mark Twain's Letters to His Publishers

"This time 'Pudd'nhead Wilson' is a success!...I have pulled the twins apart and made two individuals of them...their story has disappeared from the book...The whole story is centered on the murder and the trial...Therefore, 3 people stand up high, from beginning to end, and only 3--Pudd'nhead, 'Tom' Driscoll, and his mother Roxana...I have knocked out everything that delayed the march of the story, even the description of a Mississippi steamboat."
letter to Fred J. Hall, 7.30.1893, Florence, Italy, as quoted in Mark Twain's Letters to His Publishers

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