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Mark Twain Forum <[log in to unmask]>
Wed, 13 Jul 1994 08:27:04 EST
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The date of the Whitman piece is uncertain.  I attach a note I received from
a friend.

>From the MARK TWAIN ENCYCLOPEDIA, p. 792: "In an unfinished
>essay written about 1888, "The Walt Whitman Controversy,"
>Twain grouped Wilde with Whitman and Swinburne as poets of
>"new bad books," and said he owned none of their works."
>--Wesley Britton.
>Also: "Twain called on the Wildes in London in the late
>1880s, signing Constance's autograph book. According to
>Clara Clemens, Twain and Wilde met in a hotel in Bad
>Nauheim, Germany." --ibid.

My reading of the Whitman piece is that Clemens supported Whitman's work and
freedom of speech.  I found a reference in N&J3 on Whitman which indicates
that SLC supported Whitman with a $20.00 donation in 1886 and sent
him a copy of CY when it was published.

I couldn't find any reference on SLC being in London in the late 1880's.
I can't recall ever seeing anything from SLC's pen that would give us a clue
as to how he felt about homosexuality.

Paul Berkowitz