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Jasmine Lomas

ENG 102D
Salyers
24 Nov. 2014
Eves Diary Textual Analysis
Eves Diary is a short story written by Mark Twain in 1905. He wrote this
imaginative interpretation of the first few days on earth in a passionate and humorous way.
The story offers a new view of Adam and Eves life on earth as the first human beings to live
and incorporates some stereotypes of men and women that were accurate then and still are
today.
In the short story, the love between Adam and Eve is not portrayed as a love that
formed quickly, but by the end of the story the reader knows how deeply they both loved
each other. It is likely that Twain wrote this as a way to describe how much he loved his
wife Olivia. Twain changed many details in his version that do not line up with the bible
story that he read growing up, but he made sure to keep the relationship that Adam and
Eve had sacred. Twains beloved Olivia died in 1904, just before Eves Diary was published.
This story had a personal meaning for Twain and he used it as an outlet to express his love
for his wife. It was said that Twain fell in love with Olivia immediately, but that her love
came slowly, similar to Eve having to wait for Adam to show her that he loved her (Olivia).
It would not be correct to say that Twain wrote himself as Adam and Olivia as Eve, but he
did base the intimacy of their relationship on his own marriage. It was obvious that Twain
loved his wife Olivia very much, and that he wrote Eves Diary as a final love letter to her
after she died. The final line in the short story is Wheresoever she was, THERE was Eden.
This sentence was said by Adam while he was sitting at Eves grave following her death.
Twain clearly used Adam to show his feelings about Olivias death, and in a simple sentence

he showed such emotion and grief that his purpose in writing the short story could not be
questioned.
Eves Diary is only one short story in a collection of writings done by Mark Twain
that describe the life of Adam and Eve. In this excerpt the reader sees different versions of
the characters throughout. Eve is shown as a helpless woman when she sleeps out in the
rain, but then her independence is made obvious when she discovers fire with the help of
no one. Adam is portrayed as a simple man that focuses on work and getting things done,
but then we see his personality as he interacts with Eve in the garden. The diary is written
primarily from Eves perspective, but there is a section that is from Adams point of view. In
this section Adam describes a time when Eve wanted to keep a dinosaur as a pet. He says,
When the mighty brontosaurus came striding into camp, she regarded it as an acquisition,
I considered it a calamity. This scene is significant because it shows Adam and Eve living
an ordinary life with characteristics that are similar to husbands and wives today. Eve
wants to keep a dinosaur as a pet because she is compassionate and loves all animals, but
Adam does not allow it because a dinosaur is no proper thing to have about the place,
referring to their house. Adam is practical and responsible whereas Eve is passionate and
fascinated by her surroundings and the life that she lives everyday (Twain).
A common theme in Eves Diary is adventure. Adam and Eve were the only people in
the garden and on earth, and the majority of the story happened before they were cast out
of Eden. Every creature and object that they came into contact with was brand new and
previously undiscovered. They had to figure out how to live on earth with no guidance from
human beings. Every day something new was discovered and they had to decide how to
react to it and what to do with it. Twain was able to create plausible reactions for Adam and

Eve to have towards a new and fascinating earth. He often wrote stories that contained a lot
of action or special situations. Adventure is a theme in Eves Diary, but also in Twains
writing in general. It was a part of his style to include various activities in a story, which is
why there were so many events described in the diary that were important to the plot.
Twain had a specific purpose in writing Eves Diary, but the audience that the story
was geared towards is not as clear. There is a wide range of ages that would enjoy this
short story and it could be read as pleasure or for educational purposes. It can be read as a
contrast to the bible, as an expression of romance, or even as a humorous piece of fiction
(Librivox). It is written using simple language and vocabulary, because Twain wanted many
people to be able to enjoy his writing. Like a lot of Twains work, it has remained prominent
to readers for one hundred years.
Eves Diary was one of many stories in a collection, but it was inspired by Twains
personal life and that was evident in the story. The story provided a playful point of view of
the first years on earth and gave Adam and Eve relatable personalities, which has never
been done before. This short story is full of adventure, like most of Twains writing was so
it fits his style as a writer, although this piece is more personal than some of his other
works. This is an entertaining story for many age groups and has been able to stay in
circulation over one hundred years later.

Bibliography
"Librivox." LibriVox. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Nov. 2014.
"Olivia "Livy" Langdon Clemens." Welcome to the Mark Twain House & Museum. N.p., n.d.
Web. 22 Nov. 2014.
Twain, Mark. "Eve's Diary." Project Gutenberg. David Wigder and Cindy Rosenthal, 14 June
2004. Web. 22 Nov. 2014.