The Adventures of Tom Sawyer Questions and Answers
by Mark Twain

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer book cover
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Can you give me some examples of how Tom Sawyer comes of age in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer?

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dano7744 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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I think there are many examples of Tom coming of age. When he gets the boys to whitewash the fence, using reverse psychology, because he doesn't want to do it. How many present day kids could do that? He falls in love with Becky and imagines and stages his own death, quite a thinker. The later engagement to Becky and Tom's admission of a prior relationship shows honesty.

After the murder of Dr. Robinson, the boys swear to remain silent. The later rafting away exemplifies guts and fortitude. When he exonerates Muff at the trial is another excellent example of his honesty and wanting to do the right thing. Later when he hides in the caves with Becky, even though some would say this depicts his childish nature by hiding, I think it is another example of him having courage and certainly coming of age.

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superstarflynn | Student
Well, Twain deliberately does not mention Tom Sawyers age. Tom Sawyer age is undeterminable because it fluctuates from scene to scene. For instance, when Tom shows love he exhibits the behavior of a six year old. When he is cunning or manipulative, I presume he's around nine or ten. His athleticism and ability to perform acrobatic maneuvers places him around the age of 12. And his self-dramatization and insensitivity unquestionably reveals teenage behavior. Cliffsnotes is also useful.