Reprint: Mark Twain's Last Lecture

There was a packed house last night at the Protestant Hall to hear Mark Twain deliver his last talk in Sydney. He repeated the quaint discourse with which he opened last week; and, as on the former   occasion, he kept his audience highly diverted by his dry humour and oddity of fancy. He speaks with a peculiar intonation - almost a drawl - that adds point to his stories. He spoke of the eerie effect of the moonlight glinting on the pale white face of the corpse in the outhouse, and of his frightened bound through the window, taking the sash with him. His illustration of "special providence;" his description of an animal as not a "mongrel dog," but a "composite" or a "syndicate" dog; his reference to "burglars, lawyers, highway men - all that goes to make life happy;" and his account of his horse that was all "points" - these were hugely enjoyed by those present. Mark Twain has the happy gift of moving his audience at will, and the crowded house that listened to him last night testified to the success of his season in Sydney.
First published in The Sydney Morning Herald, 25 September 1895

[Thanks to the National Library of Australia's newspaper digitisation project for this piece.]

Note: Mark Twain travelled to Australia as a part of his global speaking tour in the 1890s.  You can read his account of his travels, Following the Equator, at the Gutenberg site.

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on April 21, 2010 8:49 AM.

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