Following the Equator

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Following the Equator (American English title) or More Tramps Abroad (English title) is a non-fiction travelogue published by American author Mark Twain in 1897.

  • Be good and you will be lonesome.
    • Caption for the author's photograph on shipboard.
  • A man may have no bad habits and have worse.
    • Ch. 1.
  • When in doubt tell the truth. It will confound your enemies and astound your friends.
    • Ch. 2.
  • It is more trouble to make a maxim than it is to do right.
    • Ch. 3.
  • Noise proves nothing. Often a hen who has merely laid an egg cackles as if she had laid an asteroid.
    • Ch. 5.
  • The truth is the most valuable thing we have. Let us economize it.
    • Ch. 7.
  • It could probably be shown by facts and figures that there is no distinctly native American criminal class except Congress.
    • Ch. 8.
  • Everything human is pathetic. The secret source of Humor itself is not joy but sorrow. There is no humor in heaven.
    • Ch. 10.
  • We should be careful to get out of an experience only the wisdom that is in it — and stop there; lest we be like the cat that sits down on a hot stove-lid. She will never sit down on a hot stove-lid again — and that is well; but also she will never sit down on a cold one any more.
    • Ch. 11.
  • There are those who scoff at the schoolboy, calling him frivolous and shallow: Yet it was the schoolboy who said "Faith is believing what you know ain't so."
    • Ch. 12.
  • The timid man yearns for full value and asks a tenth. The bold man strikes for double value and compromises on par.
    • Ch. 13.
  • We can secure other people's approval, if we do right and try hard; but our own is worth a hundred of it, and no way has been found out of securing that.
    • Ch. 14.
  • Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities, truth isn't.
    • Ch. 15.
  • There is a Moral sense, and there is an Immoral Sense. History shows us that the Moral Sense enables us to perceive morality and how to avoid it, and that the Immoral Sense enables us to perceive immorality and how to enjoy it.
    • Ch. 16.
  • It is easier to stay out than to get out.
    • Ch. 18.
  • Pity is for the living, Envy is for the dead.
    • Ch. 19.
  • It is by the goodness of God that in our country we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either.
    • Ch. 20.
  • Man will do many things to get himself loved, he will do all things to get himself envied.
    • Ch. 21.
  • There are many humorous things in the world; among them, the white man's notion that he is less savage than the other savages.
    • Ch. 21.
  • Be careless in your dress if you must, but keep a tidy soul.
    • Ch. 23.
  • "Classic." A book which people praise and don't read.
    • Ch. 25.
  • There are people who can do all fine and heroic things but one! keep from telling their happinesses to the unhappy.
    • Ch. 26.
  • Man is the Only Animal that Blushes. Or needs to.
    • Ch. 27.
  • Let us be thankful for the fools. But for them the rest of us could not succeed.
    • Ch. 28.
  • When people do not respect us we are sharply offended; yet deep down in his private heart no man much respects himself.
    • Ch. 29.
  • The tattooing in these portraits [in Dr Hocken's collection] ought to suggest the savage, of course, but it does not. The designs are so flowing and graceful and beautiful that they are a most satisfactory decoration. It takes but fifteen minutes to get reconciled to the tattooing and but fifteen more to perceive that it is just the thing. After that, the undecorated European face is unpleasant and ignorable.
    • Ch. 30.
  • The man with a new idea is a Crank until the idea succeeds.
    • Ch. 32.
  • Let us be grateful to Adam our benefactor. He cut us out of the "blessing of idleness," and won for us the "curse of labor."
    • Ch. 33.
  • Let us not be too particular. It is better to have old second-hand diamonds than none at all.
    • Ch. 34.
  • There are several good protections against temptations, but the surest is cowardice.
    • Ch. 36.
  • To succeed in the other trades, capacity must be shown; in the law, concealment of it will do.
    • Ch. 37.
  • Prosperity is the best protector of principle.
    • Ch. 38.
  • This is indeed India! the land of dreams and romance, of fabulous wealth and fabulous poverty, of splendor and rags, of palaces and hovels, of famine and pestilence, of genii and giants and Aladdin lamps, of tigers and elephants, the cobra and the jungle, the country of a hundred nations and a hundred tongues, of a thousand religions and two million gods, cradle of the human race, birthplace of human speech, mother of history, grandmother of legend, great-grandmother of tradition, whose yesterdays bear date with the mouldering antiquities of the rest of the nations--the one sole country under the sun that is endowed with an imperishable interest for alien prince and alien peasant, for lettered and ignorant, wise and fool, rich and poor, bond and free, the one land that all men desire to see, and having seen once, by even a glimpse, would not give that glimpse for the shows of all the rest of the globe combined.
    • Ch. 38.
  • By trying we can easily learn to endure adversity. Another man's, I mean.
    • Ch. 39.
  • Few of us can stand prosperity. Another man's, I mean.
    • Ch. 40.
  • Each person is born to one possession which outvalues all his others--his last breath.
    • Ch. 42.
  • Hunger is the handmaid of genius.
    • Ch. 43.
  • India had the start of the whole world in the beginning of things. She had the first civilization; she had the first accumulation of material wealth; she was populous with deep thinkers and subtle intellects; she had mines, and woods, and a fruitful soil. It would seem as if she should have kept the lead, and should be to-day not the meek dependent of an alien master, but mistress of the world, and delivering law and command to every tribe and nation in it. But, in truth, there was never any possibility of such supremacy for her. If there had been but one India and one language--but there were eighty of them! Where there are eighty nations and several hundred governments, fighting and quarreling must be the common business of life; unity of purpose and policy are impossible; out of such elements supremacy in the world cannot come. Even caste itself could have had the defeating effect of a multiplicity of tongues, no doubt; for it separates a people into layers, and layers, and still other layers, that have no community of feeling with each other; and in such a condition of things as that, patriotism can have no healthy growth.
    • ch. 43.
  • It takes your enemy and your friend, working together, to hurt you to the heart; the one to slander you and the other to get the news to you.
    • Ch. 45.
  • If the desire to kill and the opportunity to kill came always together, who would escape hanging?
    • Ch. 46.
  • Grief can take care of itself; but to get the full value of a joy you must have somebody to divide it with.
    • Ch. 48.
  • Wrinkles should merely indicate where smiles have been.
    • Ch. 52.
  • I believe that in India "cold weather" is merely a conventional phrase and has come into use through the necessity of having some way to distinguish between weather which will melt a brass door-knob and weather which will only make it mushy.
    • Ch. 54.
  • There are two times in a man's life when he should not speculate: when he can't afford it, and when he can.
    • Ch. 56.
  • Make it a point to do something every day that you don't want to do. This is the golden rule for acquiring the habit of doing your duty without pain.
    • Ch. 58.
  • Don't part with your illusions. When they are gone you may still exist but you have ceased to live.
    • Ch. 59.
  • Often, the surest way to convey misinformation is to tell the strict truth.
    • Ch. 59.
  • In the first place God made idiots. This was for practice. Then he made School Boards.
    • Ch. 61.
  • Jane Austen's books, too, are absent from this library. Just that one omission alone would make a fairly good library out of a library that hadn't a book in it.
    • Ch. 62.
  • Every one is a moon, and has a dark side which he never shows anybody.
    • Ch. 66.
  • I have traveled more than anyone else, and I have noticed that even the angels speak English with an accent.
    • Conclusion

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