The Prince and the Pauper is a novel by Mark Twain that was first published in the late 19th century. The story is a bout two young boys almost identical in looks but one is a prince and the other a poor beggar. It is a story of mistaken identity and adventure while the two boys switch lives and struggle to find away to return home. It is fun book with many unexpected plot turns and it exhibits how class can effect how people respect you.
In england two different boys a pauper Tom Canty and the prince Edward of Wales were born on the same day. However tom grew up on the streets begging while the prince lounged in his royal castle. Although he is beaten by his abusive father and grandmother he does not dwell on it and doesn’t believe he has a bad life. He has two twin sisters nan and bet and a mother whom he loves. Tom begins to hear stories from his friend, father Andrew and he starts imagining himself as a prince. One day after wondering through the streets he stubbles upon the royal village he makes his way to the palace gates in hopes to see glimpse of the real prince. Before he could interact with the prince a guard rudely attempts to take him away while a crowed that has gathered laughs and gears the prince takes pity on the pauper and befriends him. Both boys traid clothes and noticing their likeness form a connection. The prince goes to tell off the guard who hurt tom but because he is dressed in the paupers clothes the guard throws the real prince out of the palace. No one believes either boy when they try to explain their true identity and are classified as ill. The prince finds his way to a church and when he attempts to explain his situation he is mocked believing that tom canty is making up another storie the situation becomes violent and the prince flees. Tom on the other hand loves his life as a prince but all the while is worries about the real prince and if he will be found out and everyone in the palace is concerned for toms mental health. John canty finds the prince and believing that it is his son takes him home. toms father and grandmother both tease the prince believing that he is crazy but toms sisters and mother are worried about him. Toms mother tests the boy multiple times before coming to the conclusion that he is not her son. The next morning the prince wakes up in the canty household and finds out that John canty has killed father Andrew. The cantys temp to run away but get caught up in the crowed because it is a Holliday and the prince sees this as his chance to run away he goes to guilldhall where he knows the royal celebration is he demands to be seen and causes commotion telling the mob that has gathered around him that he is the real prince of Wales but everyone continues to mock him. Out of no where a man named miles hendon jumps in jumps in to defend the prince. Miles offers to take the young boy to his house but on the way there John canty catches them and claims to be the boys father Edward denies that statement and miles scares John off. When they arrive at his home Edward treats miles as if he were a servant in the palace because this is what he is accustomed to. Back in the palace we learn that the old king has died and now Edward, air to the thrown, is king. Miles leaves the house and then goes to wake Edward u from a nap only to find that he is gone. He is then informed by one of his servants that edward was told to meet miles out which wasn’t true. Edward was tricked into meeting John. Meanwhile tom is getting accustomed to being king and palace life. When in his throne room he calls in three people who have been sentenced to death, a mother and a daughter who where acused of heresy and a man accused of poisoning a man. Tom listens to both of their stories and realizes that these people were wrongly accused he relives them of their sentences to the courts surprise and becomes respected as king. The Edward is captured by John canty who is joined by a man named Hugo. He is then taken to a safe house that is filled with a mob of drunk theifes and criminals. They all try to make edward beg on the streets but every time he exposes them. He takes his only opportunity and runs away. After some running he hides in a barn only to be awoken by a group of young girls. They give him food and he helps them around the house, but he realizes that John and Hugo have found him. He runs away into the woods until he meets an old hermaite. The hermit was not kind at al but ties edward up and is about to kill him when miles knocks on the door. The hermaite drives him away but is then saved by John and Hugo. Edward gets thrown in jail after getting caught with the thieves miles black mails the jailer to let him go and they run away to miles old estate. While there miles old family denies that he is who he said he is and they get thrown in jail once again.
Prince Edward and Tom Canty were born are the same age and are identical in appearance. When the book begins tom is poor beggar, born into an abusive family but uses his imagination to escape from the world in which he knows. He loves his sisters and mother. Once he and the prince switch places tom begins to miss his old life and his family and wants to leave it all to be back home which shows that he values family and friends. Once he becomes king he pardons many of the people who were sentenced to death looking through what the judge convicted them of and because he used to be a pauper he looked over the classs difference and used his common sense and compassion towards others to understand and listen to the other side of the story. After this tom starts to become disgusted by his old life and wants nothing to do with it. When his real mom finds him and identifies him as her so he denies that he knows her. He imideatly regrets it and would do anything to take it back his selfish emotions gone. When the real king reveals himself as the true king tom does nothing but assist him in regaining his title standing up for him infant of the royal court.
Prince Edward begins the book as a self-centered young man believing that he is the only important human and should be treated as such. When he is thrown out and is saved by miles hendon he does not allow miles to sit in his presence and demands to be dressed by him. He soon learns how mistreated poor people are and begins to feel sorry for all the people convicted of unjust crimes when he is in prison. When he returns back to his thrown he learns that everyone should be treated fairly.
These two characters are complete opposites but learn the same lesson in the end, regardless of class and defferences people should be treated fairly.
A common theme through the book is fairness and equality.