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Below are three recent stories from Today in Literature; just click through to read them in full. The introduction to all 500 stories in our archive is available to all through our list of authors, but you must be a Premium Subscriber in order to have access to the stories themselves.
 


April 21 Twain to the End [premium membership required]
  On this day in 1910 Mark Twain died, at the age of seventy-four. Despite an undercurrent of doubts and dark thoughts, Twain swept along through his last years as the Mississippi to the sea: guests to his seventieth birthday banquet took home his foot-high bust, New York City pedestrians and English royalty lined up to meet him, thousands filed past his casket to see him in his last white suit -- "as much an enigma and prodigy to himself," says one biographer, as he was to them.
April 20 Stoker, Irving & Count Vlad [premium membership required]
  On this day in 1912 Bram Stoker died. The author of some twenty books, Stoker is known almost exclusively for Dracula, published in 1897. The novel brought little fame or fortune in Stoker's lifetime -- so little that he had to ask for charity at the end of his career. More surprisingly, Dracula raised few eyebrows, though modern critics find it a "veritable sexual lexicon of Victorian taboos."
April 19 The OED, the Professor & the Madman [premium membership required]
  On this date in 1928, the final volume of the first edition of the Oxford English Dictionary was published. The original estimate was that the complete four-volume set would take ten years; when it took five years to get to "ant," the editors knew they had underestimated spectacularly. They did not know that they were being significantly helped by a contributor from the insane asylum.

September 20, 2017
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