Fate of the King and the Duke in The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn

Fate of the King and the Duke in The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn

Length: 1235 words (3.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Essay
The Fate of the King and the Duke

The characters of the King and the Duke are most likely the most important after Huck and Jim in the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. These two men come into Huck's story in chapter nineteen when he leaves the Grangerfords, a family who is fighting a continuous and everlasting war against their neighbors, the Shepherdsons. Huck sees the King and the Duke being chased by some dogs, and he decides to take them aboard the raft, which Huck and Jim are using to travel down the Mississippi River. Huck eventually realizes that the two men that he helped are con artists. Towards the end of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, the two phonies are tarred and feathered by a mob who was finally able to catch them. The punishment of the Duke and the King was suitable because the scams they performed were sickening, and they obviously were not bothered by what they did.
Mark Twain shows his disrespect for the two imposters through Huck's first impression of them, and how he reacts to the small scams they carry out. The appearance of the King and the Duke is negative from the moment he sees them. His impression of the King is that "He had an old battered-up slouch hat on, and a greasy blue woolen shirt, and ragged old blue jeans britches stuffed into his boot-tops, and home-knit galluses—no, he only had one. He had an old long-tailed blue jeans coat with slick brass buttons flung over his arm, and both of them had big, fat, ratty-looking carpet bags."(Page 120) This impression The two of them go on to make up stories how one is actually the Duke of Bridgewater and that the other is the rightful King of France. Huck later comments that "It didn't take me long to make up my mind that these liars warn't no kings nor dukes at all, but just low-down humbugs and frauds."(Page 125) The next day, the Duke and the King go into the town of Pokesville, where they go to a town meeting in the woods. The King tells the people at the meeting that he is an ex-pirate of the Indian Ocean who has found his true path and wants to dedicate his life to converting other pirates to this true path of life.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Fate of the King and the Duke in The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn." 123HelpMe.com. 21 Sep 2019

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay on The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Portrait of Slavery in America

- John Femia Word Count: 2071 Words 1690 Township Road Rights Offered: first North American serial rights Altamont, NY 12009 (518) 872-1305 johnfemia1@aol.com THE ADVENTURES OF HUCKLEBERRY FINN: A PORTRAIT OF SLAVERY IN AMERICA by John Femia At the surface, Mark Twain’s famed novel, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, is a thrilling narrative told by a 13-year-old boy who embarks on a perilous journey down the formidable Mississippi River aboard a tiny wooden raft....   [tags: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn]

Research Papers
2143 words (6.1 pages)

The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn By Mark Twain Essay

- For nearly two and a half centuries people were worked to death and treated like animals just because of the color of their skin. Slavery was a racist social invention to degrade and use a group of people for their differences. In Mark Twain’s time he witnessed the prejudices against black people that lasted long after the abolishment of slavery. The social stigma around colored people did not change after slavery ended. Black people were still segregated in society and made to feel inferior. In The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by repetitively portraying white people as backwards and corrupt, Twain strives to overcome the racist belief of white superiority....   [tags: Black people, White people, Slavery]

Research Papers
1882 words (5.4 pages)

Huck's Conflicted Nature in Mark Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

- Huck's Conflicted Nature in Mark Twain’s The Adventures Of Huck Finn Continuing what he had started in the first eleven chapters, Twain further develops Huck Finn's character through a series of events where Huck's decisions indicate his moral struggle. Adventures shows the dynamic movement of Huck's internal difficulty, illustrating his conflicted nature. As juxtaposition to the fantasy of Tom Sawyer's gang, Huck encounters real robbers and murderers on the wrecked Walter Scott steamboat. After hearing their plans, Huck tells Jim, “If we find their boat we can put all of 'em in a bad fix -- for the Sheriff ’ll get 'em” (262); despite his developing nihilism , Huck decides to trap the men...   [tags: Adventures Huckleberry Huck Finn Essays]

Research Papers
1455 words (4.2 pages)

Consideration on Religious Hypocrisy and Morals in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

- ... This only set the stage for the two con men to take advantage of the religious hypocrisy and use a major part of Christianity, Providence, to determine how they may swindle the village. All three instances mentioned above show that Twain’s world is rife with religious hypocrisy. The religious hypocrisy of these characters depicts the shaky moral foundation of southern society that drives the interactions between them. Where Huck and Jim are and whether there are people close by directly impacts the interactions between the two low class males: On the raft, in isolation from the values and religion of “civilized” man, Huck and Jim become friends....   [tags: Mark Twain novels, story analysis]

Research Papers
1804 words (5.2 pages)

Essay about The Character Huck Finn in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

- A disguise through Society Huck Finn, the main character of Twains The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, travels down the Mississippi River in search of personal truth and freedom, which ironically he achieves by living a lie. Huck's journey causes him to wear a variety of disguises and masks to survive. Unfortunately however, the people he meets along the way wear disguises which they use to deceive and cheat the same society that Huck and Jim, a runaway slave, are trying to escape from. Jim must use his own cleverness, Huck's protection and disguises in order to avoid getting caught by society....   [tags: Mark Twain]

Free Essays
1412 words (4 pages)

Our Decisions and a Predetermined Fate: Oedipus the King Essay

- Since the dawn of time prophecies have supposedly been passed down directly from the gods unto the prophets. In the ancient Grecian time, god’s word was worshipped and fate was all but fact. In the bible, Moses was one of the most famous prophets. In the 1500s, Nostradamus, who was a French apothecary and seer, wrote an entire collection of prophecies. Throughout history there have been theses men and many more who claimed to know details about the future. Why would so many prophecies become world renowned if there were no truths to them....   [tags: Fate, Oedipus the King, Oedipus Rex,]

Research Papers
756 words (2.2 pages)

Tom Sawyer, Pap Finn, The Duke, And The King Essay

- In this story the main characters are Tom Sawyer, Pap Finn, The Duke, The King, Widow Douglas, Miss. Watson, Aunt Polly, Jo Popper, Ben Rogers, Tommy Barnes, Judge Thatcher, Miss. Loftus, Jake Pakard, Bill, Jim Turner, Grangefords, Buck Grangeford, Emmeline Grangeford, The Shepardsons, Baggs, Colonel Sherburn, Peter Wilks, William, Harvey Wilks, Mary Jane, Susan, Joanna, Dr. Robinson, Levi Bell, Silas Phelps, and Aunt Sally Phelps. The setting takes place in the Mississippi River along Missouri, Illinois, and Arkansas....   [tags: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Tom Sawyer]

Research Papers
1437 words (4.1 pages)

Oedipus The King : The Fate Of Fate Essays

- Oedipus The King Discovers His Fate In today’s culture we live our personal decisions that we strongly believe in In the play Oedipus The King by Sophocles fate is constantly hidden and freewill uncovers his Destiny. Odious is battling against is his fate. In the beginning of the play Oedipus is hopeful to discover about his family background. He is struggling to accept the truth about his past, and he decides to investigate his past, and he becomes his own worst enemy by destroying relationship with his family and with himself....   [tags: Oedipus the King, Sophocles, Oedipus, Jocasta]

Research Papers
715 words (2 pages)

Essay on Oedipus the King: Free Will or Fate?

- Oedipus the King: Free Will or Fate. A common debate that still rages today is whether we as a species have free will or if some divine source, some call it fate, controls our destiny. The same debate applies to Oedipus the King and Oedipus at Colonus. Does Oedipus control his actions, or are they predetermined by the gods. It’s that question that makes Oedipus a classic, and many different people think many different things. With all the oracles and talk of prophecies, its obvious that there is some divine intervention in Oedipus....   [tags: Destiny, Fate, Free Will, Free Choice]

Free Essays
617 words (1.8 pages)

Essay about Fate in Shakespeare's King Lear

- Fate in King Lear "There's a divinity that shapes our ends, rough hew them how we will." These words from Hamlet are echoed, even more pessimistically, in Shakespeare's play, The Tragedy of King Lear where Gloucester says: "Like flies to wanton boys, are we to the gods, they kill us for their sport". In Lear, the characters are subjected to the various tragedies of life over and over again. An abundance of cyclic imagery in Lear shows that good people are abused and wronged regardless of their own noble deeds or intentions....   [tags: King Lear essays]

Free Essays
2056 words (5.9 pages)

Everyone cries for him, and he ends up collecting $87.75 for this scam and a jug of whiskey. Another time, the Duke decides to perform a "low comedy" to the people of Pokesville called the "Royal Nonesuch." At the bottom of the handbill, it says that women and children are not admitted, in attempt to get a large group of men to come. The people feel cheated because the Duke and the King only act a small skit and then leave. The following two nights, the show is sold out but on the third night, Huck realizes that the crowd has rotten eggs and cabbages stuffed in their pockets. He tells the Duke and the King, and they are able to escape with a total of 465 dollars. At supper, "the king and the duke fairly laughed their bones loose over the way they'd served them people."(Page 152) The scams that the two frauds performed showed how low-down and rotten they actually were.
Huck is hurt by the following two greedy cons that the King and the Duke pull off. The first was one where they found out that a man named Peter Wilks had died and they pretended to be his long lost brothers in order to steal the inheritance from the three Wilks daughters. They actually stooped this low just to gain some money. They only thought of themselves without even considering future of the girls who were relying on them to take them back to England and care for them. Obviously, the plan of the King and the Duke was that once they collected enough money, they would just abandon the three, orphan sisters. This was the reason that their plan failed. Once they received six thousand dollars in gold, they wanted to stay longer to make more money. Eventually, the real brothers of Peter Wilks came, and everyone realized that the King and the Duke were just impostors. Mark Twain showed his disgust for these men through Huck when he said, "It was enough to make a body ashamed of the human race."(Page 162) Another instance in which the Duke and the King displayed their gluttony was when they sold Jim to Mr. Phelps in order to make forty dollars. Even after Huck and Jim had done so much to help the crooks, they stabbed them in the back. Then, Huck found out that they were going to the bar with the money they made from every scam and that they were getting drunk. This crushes Huck especially because he is so emotional and has such strong morals. "After all this long journey, and after all we'd done for them scoundrels, here it was all come to nothing, everything all busted up and ruined, because they could have the heart to serve Jim such a trick as that, and make him a slave again all his life, and amongst strangers, too, for forty dirty dollars."(Page 211) The reader really sees for the first time with the Wilks scam and what the Duke and the King did to Jim how dishonest they really are.
The ending of the Duke and the King was appropriate because they were such horrible people. All the cons that they pulled off were more than enough for them to deserve a tar and feathering even though Huck did not believe so. "Well, it made me sick to see it; and I was sorry for them poor pitiful rascals, it seemed like I couldn't ever feel any hardness against them any more in the world."(Page 230) The King and the Duke had outraged every town in which they performed a scam. They had to run from the people and dogs following them before Huck and Jim helped them, after the "Royal Nonesuch," they had to flee from the mob, and the mob at the town where they tried to rip off the Wilks, they were almost lynched. If they felt that they were brave enough to try to scam all those towns, they must have known that they would have to face the punishment if they were finally caught. The Duke and the King deserved what they got because they cared for no one but themselves.
The tar and feathering that the con artists received was a reasonable punishment because they were so greedy, and in their actions they showed that they had no morals or conscience. What was even worse was that they used the money that they stole poorly. They went and wasted it all every time just to get drunk. They were also the reason for slowing down Huck and Jim's adventure down the Mississippi River because they were forced to stay with the King and the Duke. The characters of the King and the Duke were despicable and self-absorbed.
Return to 123HelpMe.com