Literary Friends and Acquaintance

A Personal Retrospect of American Authorship

By William Dean Howells

Literary Friends and Acquaintance is a collection of essays on American literature and authors by William Dean Howells. Most of these essays were originally published as magazine pieces, starting in 1894, and were first collected in book form in 1900. The second edition, which came out in 1910, added essays on Bret Harte ("A Belated Guest") and Mark Twain.

(Note that the last essay can also be found in expanded book form as My Mark Twain: Reminiscences and Criticisms. As collected in this volume, "My Mark Twain" only includes the reminiscences. The longer book form is listed on The Online Books Page.)

Project Gutenberg has now released the essays in Literary Friends and Acquaintance as plain text files. The files were produced by David Widger, who also includes a list of "bookmarks" of important passages at the end of each file.

Below are the Gutenberg files, with the essays ordered as they are in the second edition. There is also now a file of the complete contents available.

This is a "meta-book", which stitches together separate files elsewhere on the Web as they appeared in a previously published book. It is subject to removal if someone produces an integrated edition; if this happens, the Online Books Page will point to the integrated version. For questions, and comments, write to