This work's copyright
has expired, so it is in the public domain
MOST of the adventures recorded in this book
really occurred; one or two were experiences of
my own, the rest those of boys who were schoolmates
of mine. Huck Finn
is drawn from life; Tom Sawyer
also, but not from an individual -- he is a combination
of the characteristics of three boys whom I knew,
and therefore belongs to the composite order of architecture.
The odd superstitions touched upon were all prevalent
among children and slaves in the West at the
period of this story -- that is to say, thirty or
forty years ago.
Although my book is intended mainly for the
entertainment of boys and girls, I hope it will not be
shunned by men and women on that account, for
part of my plan has been to try to pleasantly remind
adults of what they once were themselves, and of
how they felt and thought and talked, and what queer
enterprises they sometimes engaged in.