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The erratic progress of J. Harris, George and Montmorency the dog won immediate approval of Londoners, while readers all over the world saw THREE MEN IN A BOAT as a key to the British character. The project, which began as an attempt to promote pleasure boating, became one of the greatest comedy turns of Victorian literature -- a timeless classic to be read again and again. 'One of the happiest examples of how serendipity can transform humdrum into pure delight.

  • Three Men in a Boat
  • (To say nothing of the dog)
  • ***
  • Jerome K. Jerome
  • CHAPTER I.
  • THREE INVALIDS. – SUFFERINGS OF GEORGE AND HARRIS. – A VICTIM TO ONE HUNDRED AND SEVEN FATAL MALADIES. – USEFUL PRESCRIPTIONS. – CURE FOR LIVER COMPLAINT IN CHILDREN. – WE AGREE THAT WE ARE OVERWORKED, AND NEED REST. – A WEEK ON THE ROLLING DEEP? – GEORGE SUGGESTS THE RIVER. – MONTMORENCY LODGES AN OBJECTION. – ORIGINAL MOTION CARRIED BY MAJORITY OF THREE TO ONE.
  • CHAPTER II.
  • PLANS DISCUSSED. – PLEASURES OF "CAMPING–OUT," ON FINE NIGHTS. – DITTO, WET NIGHTS. – COMPROMISE DECIDED ON. – MONTMORENCY, FIRST IMPRESSIONS OF. – FEARS LEST HE IS TOO GOOD FOR THIS WORLD, FEARS SUBSEQUENTLY DISMISSED AS GROUNDLESS. – MEETING ADJOURNS.
  • CHAPTER III.
  • ARRANGEMENTS SETTLED. – HARRIS’S METHOD OF DOING WORK. – HOW THE ELDERLY, FAMILY–MAN PUTS UP A PICTURE. – GEORGE MAKES A SENSIBLE, REMARK. – DELIGHTS OF EARLY MORNING BATHING. – PROVISIONS FOR GETTING UPSET.
  • CHAPTER IV.
  • THE FOOD QUESTION. – OBJECTIONS TO PARAFFINE OIL AS AN ATMOSPHERE. – ADVANTAGES OF CHEESE AS A TRAVELLING COMPANION. – A MARRIED WOMAN DESERTS HER HOME. – FURTHER PROVISION FOR GETTING UPSET. – I PACK. – CUSSEDNESS OF TOOTH–BRUSHES. – GEORGE AND HARRIS PACK. – AWFUL BEHAVIOUR OF MONTMORENCY. – WE RETIRE TO REST.
  • CHAPTER V.
  • MRS. P. AROUSES US. – GEORGE, THE SLUGGARD. – THE "WEATHER FORECAST" SWINDLE. – OUR LUGGAGE. – DEPRAVITY OF THE SMALL BOY. – THE PEOPLE GATHER ROUND US. – WE DRIVE OFF IN GREAT STYLE, AND ARRIVE AT WATERLOO. – INNOCENCE OF SOUTH WESTERN OFFICIALS CONCERNING SUCH WORLDLY THINGS AS TRAINS. – WE ARE AFLOAT, AFLOAT IN AN OPEN BOAT.
  • CHAPTER VI.
  • KINGSTON. – INSTRUCTIVE REMARKS ON EARLY ENGLISH HISTORY. – INSTRUCTIVE OBSERVATIONS ON CARVED OAK AND LIFE IN GENERAL. – SAD CASE OF STIVVINGS, JUNIOR. – MUSINGS ON ANTIQUITY. – I FORGET THAT I AM STEERING. – INTERESTING RESULT. – HAMPTON COURT MAZE. – HARRIS AS A GUIDE.
  • CHAPTER VII.
  • THE RIVER IN ITS SUNDAY GARB. – DRESS ON THE RIVER. – A CHANCE FOR THE MEN. – ABSENCE OF TASTE IN HARRIS. – GEORGE’S BLAZER. – A DAY WITH THE FASHION–PLATE YOUNG LADY. – MRS. THOMAS’S TOMB. – THE MAN WHO LOVES NOT GRAVES AND COFFINS AND SKULLS. – HARRIS MAD. – HIS VIEWS ON GEORGE AND BANKS AND LEMONADE. – HE PERFORMS TRICKS.
  • CHAPTER VIII.
  • BLACKMAILING. – THE PROPER COURSE TO PURSUE. – SELFISH BOORISHNESS OF RIVER–SIDE LANDOWNER. – "NOTICE" BOARDS. – UNCHRISTIANLIKE FEELINGS OF HARRIS. – HOW HARRIS SINGS A COMIC SONG. – A HIGH–CLASS PARTY. – SHAMEFUL CONDUCT OF TWO ABANDONED YOUNG MEN. – SOME USELESS INFORMATION. – GEORGE BUYS A BANJO.
  • CHAPTER IX.
  • GEORGE IS INTRODUCED TO WORK. – HEATHENISH INSTINCTS OF TOW–LINES. – UNGRATEFUL CONDUCT OF A DOUBLE–SCULLING SKIFF. – TOWERS AND TOWED. – A USE DISCOVERED FOR LOVERS. – STRANGE DISAPPEARANCE OF AN ELDERLY LADY. – MUCH HASTE, LESS SPEED. – BEING TOWED BY GIRLS: EXCITING SENSATION. – THE MISSING LOCK OR THE HAUNTED RIVER. – MUSIC. – SAVED!
  • CHAPTER X.
  • OUR FIRST NIGHT. – UNDER CANVAS. – AN APPEAL FOR HELP. – CONTRARINESS OF TEA–KETTLES, HOW TO OVERCOME. – SUPPER. – HOW TO FEEL VIRTUOUS. – WANTED! A COMFORTABLY–APPOINTED, WELL–DRAINED DESERT ISLAND, NEIGHBOURHOOD OF SOUTH PACIFIC OCEAN PREFERRED. – FUNNY THING THAT HAPPENED TO GEORGE’S FATHER. – A RESTLESS NIGHT.
  • CHAPTER XI.
  • HOW GEORGE, ONCE UPON A TIME, GOT UP EARLY IN THE MORNING. – GEORGE, HARRIS, AND MONTMORENCY DO NOT LIKE THE LOOK OF THE COLD WATER. – HEROISM AND DETERMINATION ON THE PART OF J. – GEORGE AND HIS SHIRT: STORY WITH A MORAL. – HARRIS AS COOK. – HISTORICAL RETROSPECT, SPECIALLY INSERTED FOR THE USE OF SCHOOLS.
  • CHAPTER XII.
  • HENRY VIII. AND ANNE BOLEYN. – DISADVANTAGES OF LIVING IN SAME HOUSE WITH PAIR OF LOVERS. – A TRYING TIME FOR THE ENGLISH NATION. – A NIGHT SEARCH FOR THE PICTURESQUE. – HOMELESS AND HOUSELESS. – HARRIS PREPARES TO DIE. – AN ANGEL COMES ALONG. – EFFECT OF SUDDEN JOY ON HARRIS. – A LITTLE SUPPER. – LUNCH. – HIGH PRICE FOR MUSTARD. – A FEARFUL BATTLE. – MAIDENHEAD. – SAILING. – THREE FISHERS. – WE ARE CURSED.
  • CHAPTER XIII.
  • MARLOW. – BISHAM ABBEY. – THE MEDMENHAM MONKS. – MONTMORENCY THINKS HE WILL MURDER AN OLD TOM CAT. – BUT EVENTUALLY DECIDES THAT HE WILL LET IT LIVE. – SHAMEFUL CONDUCT OF A FOX TERRIER AT THE CIVIL SERVICE STORES. – OUR DEPARTURE FROM MARLOW. – AN IMPOSING PROCESSION. – THE STEAM LAUNCH, USEFUL RECEIPTS FOR ANNOYING AND HINDERING IT. – WE DECLINE TO DRINK THE RIVER. – A PEACEFUL DOG. – STRANGE DISAPPEARANCE OF HARRIS AND A PIE.
  • CHAPTER XIV.
  • WARGRAVE. – WAXWORKS. – SONNING. – OUR STEW. – MONTMORENCY IS SARCASTIC. – FIGHT BETWEEN MONTMORENCY AND THE TEA–KETTLE. – GEORGE’S BANJO STUDIES. – MEET WITH DISCOURAGEMENT. – DIFFICULTIES IN THE WAY OF THE MUSICAL AMATEUR. – LEARNING TO PLAY THE BAGPIPES. – HARRIS FEELS SAD AFTER SUPPER. – GEORGE AND I GO FOR A WALK. – RETURN HUNGRY AND WET. – THERE IS A STRANGENESS ABOUT HARRIS. – HARRIS AND THE SWANS, A REMARKABLE STORY. – HARRIS HAS A TROUBLED NIGHT.
  • CHAPTER XV.
  • HOUSEHOLD DUTIES. – LOVE OF WORK. – THE OLD RIVER HAND, WHAT HE DOES AND WHAT HE TELLS YOU HE HAS DONE. – SCEPTICISM OF THE NEW GENERATION. – EARLY BOATING RECOLLECTIONS. – RAFTING. – GEORGE DOES THE THING IN STYLE. – THE OLD BOATMAN, HIS METHOD. – SO CALM, SO FULL OF PEACE. – THE BEGINNER. – PUNTING. – A SAD ACCIDENT. – PLEASURES OF FRIENDSHIP. – SAILING, MY FIRST EXPERIENCE. – POSSIBLE REASON WHY WE WERE NOT DROWNED.
  • CHAPTER XVI.
  • READING. – WE ARE TOWED BY STEAM LAUNCH. – IRRITATING BEHAVIOUR OF SMALL BOATS. – HOW THEY GET IN THE WAY OF STEAM LAUNCHES. – GEORGE AND HARRIS AGAIN SHIRK THEIR WORK. – RATHER A HACKNEYED STORY. – STREATLEY AND GORING.
  • CHAPTER XVII.
  • WASHING DAY. – FISH AND FISHERS. – ON THE ART OF ANGLING. – A CONSCIENTIOUS FLY–FISHER. – A FISHY STORY.
  • CHAPTER XVIII.
  • LOCKS. – GEORGE AND I ARE PHOTOGRAPHED. – WALLINGFORD. – DORCHESTER. – ABINGDON. – A FAMILY MAN. – A GOOD SPOT FOR DROWNING. – A DIFFICULT BIT OF WATER. – DEMORALIZING EFFECT OF RIVER AIR.
  • CHAPTER XIX.
  • OXFORD. – MONTMORENCY’S IDEA OF HEAVEN. – THE HIRED UP–RIVER BOAT, ITS BEAUTIES AND ADVANTAGES. – THE "PRIDE OF THE THAMES." – THE WEATHER CHANGES. – THE RIVER UNDER DIFFERENT ASPECTS. – NOT A CHEERFUL EVENING. – YEARNINGS FOR THE UNATTAINABLE. – THE CHEERY CHAT GOES ROUND. – GEORGE PERFORMS UPON THE BANJO. – A MOURNFUL MELODY. – ANOTHER WET DAY. – FLIGHT. – A LITTLE SUPPER AND A TOAST.
  • Footnotes
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