Thomas "Tom" Sawyer is the title character of the Mark Twain novel The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876). He appears in three other novels by Twain: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884), Tom Sawyer Abroad (1894), and Tom Sawyer, Detective (1896).
Sawyer also appears in at least three unfinished Twain works, Huck and Tom Among the Indians, Schoolhouse Hill, and Tom Sawyer's Conspiracy. While all three uncompleted works were posthumously published, only Tom Sawyer's Conspiracy has a complete plot, as Twain abandoned the other two works after finishing only a few chapters.
The fictional character's name may have derived from a real-life Tom Sawyer with whom Twain was acquainted in San Francisco, California, while Twain was employed as a reporter at the San Francisco Call. The character himself is an amalgamation of three boys Twain knew while growing up.
The name Sawyer is derived from the Mississippi River pilot's term for a "tree in the bed of the river with its branches reaching the surface and moving up and down with the current." Twain was a river pilot at one time, and many of the adventures of his character, Tom Sawyer, are connected with the Mississippi River, and partly derive from this experience.
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