By Mark Twain
Hank Morgan reveals himself transported to darkish a while England—where he's instantly captured and sentenced to loss of life at Camelot. thankfully, he’s quick-witted, and within the strategy of saving his existence he turns himself right into a megastar of the top magnitude—winning himself the location of best minister in addition to the lasting enmity of Merlin.
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Extra info for A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court (Dover Thrift Editions)
The tower itself, Hank informs us, was Roman in origin, and so when he has it rebuilt he implicitly links himself with the first imperialists to invade and colonize Britain. More unsettling is that his first public act is an act of violence and that the first “blessing” of progress he brings into this world from the future is gunpowder. No one dies in the tower’s destruction (though the light of the explosion does show “a thousand acres of human beings groveling on the ground in a general collapse of consternation” (p.
Pages 52-53) To return to my anomalous position in King Arthur’s kingdom. Here I was, a giant among pigmies, a man among children, a master intelligence among intellectual moles: by all rational measurement the one and only actually great man in that whole British world; and yet there and then, just as in the remote England of my birth-time, the sheep-witted earl who could claim long descent from a king’s leman, acquired at second-hand from the slums of London, was a better man than I was. (page 83) There never was such a country for wandering liars; and they were of both sexes.
Only a few pages after the great scene in which he lassoes Launcelot, we find Hank using Colt revolvers to gun down knights armed with spears and swords. “The march of civilization was begun” (p. 413) is his comment on this moment. It begins in blood. In a sense it ends with the battle in the novel’s final chapters, when Hank’s deployment of all his technological resources to put down the challenge to his proclaimed republic results in acres of corpses. The sound track of Hank’s adventures in Camelot is as noisy as that of the television coverage of one of America’s wars in the third world, punctuated throughout as it is by the explosions he engineers.
A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court (Dover Thrift Editions) by Mark Twain