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A Tramp Abroad

3.86  ·  Rating Details ·  1,663 Ratings  ·  177 Reviews
Much as the modern French duel is ridiculed by certain smart people, it is in reality one of the most dangerous institutions of our day. Since it is always fought in the open air, the combatants are nearly sure to catch cold. M. Paul de Cassagnac, the most inveterate of the French duelists, had suffered so often in this way that he is at last a confirmed invalid.
Paperback, 372 pages
Published June 17th 2004 by Kessinger Publishing, LLC (first published 1880)
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Lorenzo Berardi
Aug 27, 2011 Lorenzo Berardi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: american, 2011
I bought this book by mistake in one of those charity shops that make any idle and rainy Saturday in Oxford a treasure hunt.
What I thought I had found was actually "Innocents Abroad" by the same Mark Twain, but somehow the word "tramp" was left out of my raptorous glance.

Well, "A Tramp Abroad" revolves around pretty much the same topic of "Innocents Abroad" which is Mr Twain touring Europe proud of being an American but at the same time eager to get all that the Old Continent has to offer to h
Lyn Elliott
I found a 'part 1' on iBooks and read it in about an hour of a 3 hour plane trip. It was fun, made me laugh in parts. Clements was clearly fascinated by the student dueling culture in Heidelberg at the time, observing the rituals with keen interest and some excitement, I suspect. I'm not sure that I'll pursue later parts, but this was perfect in-air reading.
Jul 29, 2011 Rob rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First, I'm glad I've already read The Innocents Abroad, or else at some point I'd have little to no idea what Twain is talking about when he refers to incidents on that trip, which happens occasionally. This seems a slightly more 'serious' book than that, too, which shows me some of the changes (not to mention growth) in Twain himself, which adds interest.

Beyond that, there's no easy way to categorize this book: humorous travelogue, social critique of both Europe and the U.S. (in which neither h
Joselito Honestly and Brilliantly
Funny, but not hilarious. Mostly tongue-in-cheek hyperboles, Mark Twain recounts here his 15-month walking trip through Central Europe and the Alps in 1878-1879. I have only one kind of test for humorous, or supposedly humorous, books: the sound test. Five stars if it made me laugh out loud; four stars if it made me chuckle; three stars if it made me smile; two stars if it just made light up inside; a star if I found it funny without any change in me, or if it wasn't funny at all.

In his Introduc
Jun 14, 2016 Jenny rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love Mark Twain, but this is probably my least favorite book of his. There are parts with beautiful descriptions and parts that made me chuckle, but the stories and legends were annoying and felt out of place. My dad and I just wanted it to be over. He kept saying, "I miss Madeleine," referring to L'Engle, whose books we read together just before starting A Tramp Abroad.
I only recommend this if you're a staunch Twain fan. I'm sure there are other humorous "travel" books out there much more wo
Mar 29, 2007 Jesse rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Travellers
This is by far my favorite of Twain's works. When you go to Europe you need this book. "Paris and Venice are the two greatest lies ever told." Brilliant. Cause they are. When you read this you must realize that Twain is a sarcastic American debunking all the European myth and glory. Most of what you know about Europe has been sold as a marketing campaign. Twain realizes that reality lays not in a travel brochure but in the real travel and observation of that place. Excellent.
Jan 10, 2016 Konsumschnecke rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ich habe die vollständige Hörbuchfassung des Buches gehört. Und Mark Twains Geschichten zuzuhören macht mächtig Spaß. Abzug in der B-Note gibt es, weil ich den Sprecher nicht mochte. Egal. Ich hätte das Buch vermutlich früher oder später selbst gelesen, aber das Hörbuch bekam ich geschenkt und nem geschenkten Gaul schaut man nicht ins Maul.
Aug 09, 2014 Rob rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting reading this on the heels of "The Dharma Bums' by Jack Kerouac. There is a key phrase from "A Tramp Abroad", "comparisons are odious" which has always struck me. It appears notably in both of these books. "A Tramp Abroad" is really interesting as a travelogue, a glimpse into 19th century Europe from a sharp and acute observer. Twain's descriptions of villages, hotel's, hotel customs, restaurant fare, mountains and mountain climbing, art and artists, architecture are joys to read ...more
Patrick Hadley
Oct 28, 2012 Patrick Hadley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Twain is absolutely hilarious. His satire is always firmly focused on pretension, and it never misfires. I was laughing out loud throughout the entire book. When there was nobody to humble and no pretension to mock, he could in turn give wonderful descriptions of scenery, peoples, and customs. As imaginative and bitingly hilarious as Swift, but with one foot always firmly on the ground.
This is an enjoyable read but scattered in its organization. Mark Twain is proud of his own wit and sprinkles it all over his descriptions of European culture and landscapes. This book was particularly meaningful for me because I am living in Germany and have had similar experiences as he did well over one-hundred years ago. For example, his descriptions of Heidelberg and its castle ruin are just like my experiences there: the rolling, forested hills above the Necker river; the castle on the hil ...more
Ryan Milbrath
When I think of Mark Twain I think of my sophomore year English class in High School. We read Huckleberry Finn. In eighth grade I remember reading Tom Sawyer. In both cases I remember the teacher engaging us in lengthy discussions of youth, naiveté, racism, American culture during the 1800’s, and Samuel Clemens own tramp-like background. Ever since those “teachable moments” in literature I wanted to meet this Mr. Twain. He seemed like my kind of person: witty, tongue-in-cheek, mischievous, ideal ...more
Mar 21, 2008 Eric rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mark Twain is considered one of the great American writers of the 19th century, yah yah, you’ve heard it all before. While most people know him from the tales of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, Twain also wrote non-fiction. In “A Tramp Abroad”, Twain writes about his experience travelling through Europe in the 1880s. It’s actually his second trip, the first trip he wrote about in “Innocents Abroad”.

Then an innocent, now a tramp. Nice.

It didn’t take me long to make up my mind, Twain is dope. His
Hall's Bookshop
Aug 10, 2016 Hall's Bookshop rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: james
For Mark Twain, humour was best served dry - so dry that sometimes it's hard to tell where one joke end and the next begins. Indeed, I was actually under the impression that this book was 'The Innocents Abroad' when I started reading it, so Twain gets one more jab in post mortem. Germans, Swiss, Americans and the English are all equally laid waste, along with Rhine wine and mountain climbing. And of course, this being the story of an epic journey across Europe on foot, Twain and his companion Ha ...more
Nov 26, 2015 Steve rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In this case, tramp is used not as a description of a person, but as the name of an action, the process of walking. It's ironic, of course, since Twain uses every chance he gets to tell us that his walking tour usually consisted of taking carriages, trains, boats, horses, or other means of conveyance. May I interject a personal note here? In high school, Mr. Hoyer told me in speech class that he couldn't figure out if I was being serious or trying to be funny when I gave my very ill-informed but ...more
Jul 25, 2015 Will rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
"A man accustomed to American food and American domestic cookery would not starve to death suddenly in Europe; but I think he would gradually waste away, and eventually die.

He would have to do without his accustomed morning meal. That is too formidable a change altogether; he would necessarily suffer from it. He could get the shadow, the sham, the base counterfeit of that meal; but it would do him no good, and money would not buy the reality.

To particularize: the average American's simplest and
S.P. Moss
Published in 1880, 'A Tramp Abroad' is a mix of autobiography and fiction covering the author's travels in Southern Germany, the Swiss Alps and Italy.

The title sets the tone for the book in that "tramp" - in either sense of the word - is a deliberate misnomer, as Mr Twain/Clemens rarely travels by foot, taking advantage of the transport available at the time - trains, rafts, carriages, steamers, mules - and the services of that all-important courier.

This is a very long b
Jan 10, 2016 Ritja rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mit Mark Twain durch Europa zu bummeln, ist eine Reise in die Vergangenheit und muss mit viel Muße angegangen werden. Mark Twain reist noch recht munter und flott durch Deutschland, bleibt etwas länger im Heidelberger Studentenleben hängen und versüßt dem Zuhörer die Zeit mit Humor und Ironie. Mit ihm in der Oper zu sitzen, brachte mich zum Lachen. Sein Erstaunen über das deutsche Verhalten in der Oper und die Beschreibungen der Opern waren sehr amüsant. Auch die Beschreibungen seiner Unterkünft ...more
Jul 30, 2016 Vivian rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels
Twain regales with this satire on the The Grand Tour, which at the time was dubbed the "education rite of passage". Other classic works which poke a finger at this long established tradition include ROOM WITH A VIEW by E. M. Forster and LITTLE DORRIT by Charles Dickens. I doubt any other author had as much fun with this as Twain did. Readers living during the end of the Victorian Era and the beginning of the Edwardian Era would read and enjoy these on an entirely different level than today's rea ...more
Feb 25, 2015 Barbara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fascinating, fraught and hilarious. I'm pretty much besotted by that part of the world anyway and I enjoyed travelling back in time. This is the book which contains the famous essay "The Awful German Language" - read it for that alone - and it relates an episode which will put you off forever from attempting to scale the Matterhorn.
Jack Hrkach
Dec 10, 2014 Jack Hrkach rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: travel
I had received the Kindle version (a free Gutenberg book, which for some reason repeats the entire 50 chapters) before my recent 3 weeks in Germany, Switzerland and Strasbourg France. Mark Twain took a tramp abroad and WAS a tramp abroad. He is of course a great storyteller, and while sometimes serious is at times brilliantly comic here.

However, unless you're a great fan (or like me want to compare your trip to his) you may be a tad disappointed in the author of Huckleberry Finn, which I, like m
Oct 27, 2013 Connie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm only on page 20 but blown away by similarities in Twain's observations of the beer-drinking hijinks of university students in His day in Heidleberg and my own observations of modern day university students and their quest of the same sorts of drunken prowess.
Mar 17, 2015 Bookista rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Uneven in parts but oh so good. It's his travels through Europe "on foot." Some of the best bits: failure to see the sunrise in Switzerland, meeting other American tourists abroad, his friend Harris' Protestant dislike of Catholic glaciers.
Twain is indeed a funny man- something I never fully believed until reading this work!
Martin Burrows
I like anything by Mark Twain, and this book, A Tramp Abroad is no exception, however this is not one I would recommend to someone who has not already developed a taste for him. This is his second book about his European Travels, the first one, Innocents Abroad, was about a trip he took about 12 years prior to the trip that A Tramp Abroad is about. This book was written in 1880, so you have to read it with a perspective of someone living over 135 years ago. European Travel, for average Americans ...more
Aug 27, 2016 Jason rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Twain fans
Recommended to Jason by: Twain's bibliography
Shelves: mark-twain, 2015
Well, it looks like all of Twain's travel books might be getting three stars from me. So far we're three for three at three, but I definitely have a ranking. Roughing It is my favorite of the ones I've read so far because it had more anecdotal asides than the others, and those make the book. Plus I'm an American, and that one takes place in America, so I'm more familiar with the territory. In fact, Roughing It would've been a four star book if it weren't for the last section on Hawaii which was ...more
Sep 25, 2015 Christiane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mark-twain
I seem to remember that his official biographer, Albert Bigelow Paine, said that Mark Twain wrote this book because he desperately needed the money and that his heart was not in it.

It’s true that there is none of the freshness, exuberance and irreverence of “The Innocents Abroad” in this travel book. It was written by an older and more mature Mark Twain. The humour is quieter and for the most part he manages to stop his imagination from running riot (except for the ascent of the Riffelberg), but
A Tramp Abroad is my first 'factual' Mark Twain book and I'm not completely sure how I feel about it. Initially difficult to get into, the first few chapters are an odd blend of observations, hearsay, retelling of local myths and flannel. Once the style settles down, I thought the book flowed more but it's still quite hit and miss - a bit like watching a Monty Python episode. There are very funny anecdotes that are probably greatly exaggerated or mostly made up but with satirical grains of truth ...more
Sarah-Lambert Cook
I love to see a new place by walking in it. It's one of the best ways to experience the unfamiliar since it gives you time to explore and absorb the scenery. Maybe that's why I found it fascinating to read one of Mark Twain's lesser known works about his walking travels in Europe around the alps while I'm here in Germany. Twain's descriptions of university life in Heidelberg aren't so different from the way things are now even if they are a little more the 19th c variation.

What I really love is
Feb 21, 2013 Allison rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In terms of Twain travelogue, I would say this is ultimately the weakest of the lot – although, bless, that still leaves a lot to enjoy. A Tramp Abroad starts out strong in Germany and builds thrills in Switzerland before sputtering to over-lingering in the Alps and plummeting to an abrupt conclusion in Italy so startling that I had no idea that I was going to be finishing the book until I was halfway through the chapter. You can tell that Twain was tired of traveling and lecturing with this boo ...more
Jan 06, 2013 Iona rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
"I heard a Californian student in Heidelberg say, in one of his calmest moods, that he would rather decline two drinks than one German adjective."

The best part of this book is Twain's essay on Die schreckliche deutsche Sprache. Despite having spent a large part of last year travelling around the same parts of Germany and Switzerland as he did, I found that his discourse on language was the only part I could really relate to. An earlier Bill Bryson he may be, but with markedly less humour and a d
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Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known by his pen name Mark Twain, was an American author and humorist. He is noted for his novels Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885), called "the Great American Novel", and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876).

Twain grew up in Hannibal, Missouri, which would later provide the setting for Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer. He apprenticed with a printer. He also work
More about Mark Twain...

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“That's the difference between governments and individuals. Governments don't care, individuals do.” 36 likes
“A man who keeps company with glaciers comes to feel tolerably insignificant by and by.” 3 likes
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