Set in Renaissance England, ”The Prince and the Pauper” tells the story of Tom Canty, a ragged pauper, and young Edward VI, only son of Henry VIII, who look exactly alike. Almost by accident, the boys exchange places days before Henry’s death and Edward’s coronation, leaving Tom to the role of future king and Edward to the mercy of the beggars’ underworld. A rousing tale of mistaken identity.
”The Prince and the Pauper” is a historical novel by the American writer Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known under his pen name Mark Twain (1835-1910), published in 1881. Mark Twain has become especially famous for his adventure novels around the characters Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn.
In this story, which plays in England in the middle of the sixteenth century, Twain uses an unusual style, which reminds of Charles Dickens. The novel uses the classic motif of a case of mistaken identity, linked to the social ascent or descent of the respective protagonist. Through the associated experiences, both main characters are experiencing a process of maturing and gaining knowledge, in which they learn to better understand the problems of each other´s life environment. The book is Twain’s first historical novel, which was later followed by ”A Yankee at the Court of King Arthur”.
This edition is based upon the original text, it is unabridged, annotated, and is generously decorated with beautiful illustrations by Frank Thayer Merrill, John J. Harley and L. S. Ipsen. The eBook corresponds to about 250 book pages.