“There is one notable thing about our Christianity: bad, bloody, merciless, money-grabbing and predatory … ours is a terrible religion.”

As this quote from his recently released autobiography illustrates, Samuel Langhorne Clemens was not one to sugarcoat his views about organized religion.

Sprinkled among his novels, essays, speeches and personal memoirs are numerous remarks by Clemens – better known by his pen name of Mark Twain – that would be distressing to devout Christians. In fact, Twain quotes are often featured on atheistic websites.

Even so, Twain is among the most celebrated U.S. authors of all time. He maintained a summer residence in Elmira, N.Y., for two decades following his 1870 marriage to Olivia Langdon, penning some of his most famous works in Chemung County. Twain is buried there alongside his wife and children at Woodlawn Cemetery.

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