Study Guide

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court Chapter 43

By Mark Twain

Chapter 43

The Battle of the Sand Belt

  • After reaching Merlin's cave, Hank writes his story down in a diary and sends letters to his wife. He and his followers plan to blow up all of his factories remotely with dynamite.
  • He sends out spies and learns that many knights returning from the Crusades are flocking to the Church's banner. The whole country, it seems, has turned against them.
  • A huge army appears outside the cave. Hank issues a proclamation, congratulating their strength and warning them that he and his men will kill them all if they approach. Once more, we are reminded that knights are just plain stupid: they attack anyway.
  • He and Clarence anticipate an initial probe from the knights, and power up electric wire to stop them.
  • They watch as a pair of knights are killed by the wire, followed by many more. (Seriously, guys: chimps can figure this stuff out. If the man in front of you gets killed by the wire, don't touch it.)
  • The army continues its attack. Hank and his men turn on pumps to create a mighty river on the battlefield, then open up with Gatling guns on the advancing knights. They kill 25,000 without suffering a single casualty.