Samuel Langhorne Clemens (November 30, 1835 – April 21, 1910), well known by his pen name Mark Twain, was an American author and humorist. Twain is noted for his novels Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885), which has been called "the Great American Novel", and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876). Twain was a friend to presidents, artists, industrialists, and European royalty. Twain was very popular, and his keen wit and incisive satire earned praise from critics and peers. Upon his death he was lauded as the "greatest American humorist of his age", and William Faulkner called Twain "the father of American literature"
104 years ago, when he was 70 years old, Mark Twain began dictating his autobiography to a stenographer. He finished shortly before his death on April 21, 1910. The finished manuscript came in at more than 500,000 words, but Twain didn't expect the whole thing to be published.
"From the first, second, third and fourth editions all sound and sane expressions of opinion must be left out," Twain told his editors and heirs. "There may be a market for that kind of wares a century from now. There is no hurry. Wait and see."
Thus, in November, the University of California will publish the first volume of the Autobiography of Mark Twain exactly as he had dictated. (Or as they subtitle it: The Complete and Authoritative Edition).