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Carl Van Doren (1885–1950).  The American Novel.  1921.


Page 162

Ward, then lecturing in Virginia City, and was pleased with his praise. The year following, having been forced to leave Nevada by participation in a farcical duel, Mark Twain took himself to San Francisco, where he wrote for various papers and came under the tutelage of Bret Harte. While there he wrote the Jumping Frog story which Artemus Ward wanted to use in a volume of his own but which instead appeared in a New York newspaper late in 1865 and tickled the country. A trip to the Sandwich Islands still further enlarged Mark Twain’s horizon and his journalistic reputation. In 1866 he tried humorous lecturing with unequivocal success, made money, traveled to the East by the way of Panama, convulsed New York at Cooper Union, and in 1867 sailed for the Mediterranean and Palestine on an excursion of which he became the hilarious chronicler in his first important book, The Innocents Abroad, published in 1869.
  The sudden, the almost explosive fame which the book brought him sharply lights up the taste of the period which produced it. Of the older American schools the Knickerbockers had ceased to exist; in New England Hawthorne and Thoreau were dead and the creative vitality of their generation had waned. The rising men of genius looked to Europe for their guides: Whistler was established in London; Henry James was being sealed to the Old World; even Howells, loyally native as he was, worked upon his native material with the most classical tools. Only Whitman had stayed relentlessly at home, and he was still speaking prophecy out of a dim and narrow cloud. Upon this scene Mark Twain burst with a ringing American hurrah, a “powerful uneducated person” of the



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