Support the Monkey! Tell All your Friends and Teachers

Help / FAQ

<- Previous | First | Next -> Digital Library - Adventures of Tom Sawyer

Table of Contents

Chapter 17

Pirates at Their Own Funeral

BUT THERE WAS NO hilarity in the little town that same tranquil Saturday
afternoon. The Harpers, and Aunt Polly’s family, were being put into mourning,
with great grief and many tears. An unusual quiet possessed the village,
although it was ordinarily quiet enough, in all conscience. The villagers
conducted their concerns with an absent air, and talked little; but they sighed
often. The Saturday holiday seemed a burden to the children. They had no heart
in their sports, and gradually gave them up.

In the afternoon Becky Thatcher found herself moping about the deserted
school-house yard, and feeling very melancholy. But she found nothing there to
comfort her. She soliloquised: “O, if I only had his brass andiron-knob again! But
I haven’t got anything now to remember him by.” And she choked back a little

Presently she stopped, and said to herself: “It was right here. O, if it was to do
over again, I wouldn’t say that-I wouldn’t say it for the whole world. But he’s
gone now; I’ll never never never see him any more.” This thought broke her
down and she wandered away, with the tears rolling down her cheeks. Then
quite a group of boys and girls,- playmates of Tom’s and Joe’s-came by, and
stood looking over the paling fence and talking in reverent tones of how Tom
did so-and-so, the last time they saw him, and how Joe said this and that small
trifle (pregnant with awful prophecy, as they could easily see now!)- and each
speaker pointed out the exact spot where the lost lads stood at the time, and then
added something like “and I was a-standing just so-just as I am now, and as if
you was him-I was as close as that-and he smiled, just this way-and then
something seemed to go all over me, like,- awful, you know-and I never thought
what it meant, of course, but I can see now!” Then there was a dispute about
who saw the dead boys last in life, and many claimed that dismal distinction,
and offered evidences, more or less tampered with by the witness; and when it
was ultimately decided who did see the departed last, and exchanged the last
words with them, the lucky parties took upon themselves a sort of sacred
importance, and were gaped at and envied by all the rest.

One poor chap, who had no other grandeur to offer, said with tolerably manifest
pride in the remembrance: “Well, Tom Sawyer he licked me once.” But that bid
for glory was a failure. Most of the boys could say that, and so that cheapened
the distinction too much. The group loitered away, still recalling memories of the
lost heroes, in awed voices.

When the Sunday-school hour was finished, the next morning, the bell began to
toll, instead of ringing in the usual way. It was a very still Sabbath, and the
mournful sound seemed in keeping with the musing hush that lay upon nature.
The villagers began to gather, loitering a moment in the vestibule to converse in
whispers about the sad event. But there was no whispering in the house; only

<- Previous | First | Next -> Digital Library - Adventures of Tom Sawyer Table of Contents

All Contents Copyright © All rights reserved.
Further Distribution Is Strictly Prohibited.

About Us | Advertising | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Home Page

In Association with