A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthurs Court by Mark TwainOne of the greatest satires in American literature, Mark Twains A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthurs Court begins when Hank Morgan, a skilled mechanic in a nineteenth-century New England arms factory, is struck on the head during a quarrel and awakens to find himself among the knights and magicians of King Arthurs Camelot. The Yankee vows brashly to boss the whole country inside of three weeks and embarks on an ambitious plan to modernize Camelot with 19th c. industrial inventions like electricity and gunfire. It isnt long before all hell breaks loose!
Written in 1889, Mark A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthurs Court is one of literatures first genre mash-ups and one of the first works to feature time travel. It is one of the best known Twain stories, and also one of his most unique. Twain uses the work to launch a social commentary on contemporary society, a thinly veiled critique of the contemporary times despite the Old World setting.
While the dark pessimism that would fully blossom in Twains later works can be discerned in A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthurs Court, the novel will nevertheless be remembered primarily for its wild leaps of imagination, brilliant wit, and entertaining storytelling.
A CONNECTICUT YANKEE IN KING ARTHUR'S COURT by Mark Twain ►► Book Review
A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
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In the book, a Yankee engineer from Connecticut named Hank Morgan receives a severe blow to the head and is somehow transported in time and space to England during the reign of King Arthur. After some initial confusion and his capture by one of Arthur's knights, Hank realizes that he is actually in the past, and he uses his knowledge to make people believe that he is a powerful magician. He attempts to modernize the past in order to make people's lives better, but in the end he is unable to prevent the death of Arthur and an interdict against him by the Catholic Church of the time, which grows fearful of his power. Twain wrote the book as a burlesque of Romantic notions of chivalry after being inspired by a dream in which he was a knight himself, severely inconvenienced by the weight and cumbersome nature of his armor. It is a satire of feudalism and monarchy that also celebrates homespun ingenuity and democratic values while questioning the ideals of capitalism and outcomes of the Industrial Revolution. It is among several works by Twain and his contemporaries that mark the transition from the Gilded Age to the Progressive Era of socioeconomic discourse.
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Sign in. No host?, Hank Morgan runs a munitions and machinery factory in 19th-century Connecticut. He's struck by a crowbar during a dispute with the workers, and wakes up thirteen centuries in the past.
In the last chapter, the tourist has finished reading the manuscript and searches out the stranger, only to find him dying and calling out for the wife and daughter whom he had lived with in sixth-century England. In the first chapter, this stranger we later learn that his name is Hank Morgan, but he is usually referred to in the novel as The Boss tells the tourist that he was something of a jack-of-all-trades who had a particular aptitude for making and inventing things mechanical. He is from Hartford, Connecticut, where he had been head superintendent in a munitions factory until, in a fight with one of the workers, he was hit in the head with a crowbar. When he awakened, he was sitting in the grass under a tree. A man in old-fashioned armor took him prisoner, and they rode off to what Hank Morgan believed would probably be an insane asylum. At this point in the story, this stranger begins to feel very sleepy, so he gives the tourist the manuscript detailing his adventures, which he has written from the journals that he kept.