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The Snows of Kilimanjaro

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The Snows of Kilimanjaro, 1961 edition1961 collection
Publication details ▽ Publication details △

First publication
1936 in Esquire magazine

First book publication
1938 in The Fifth Column and the First Forty-Nine Stories (1938)

Literature form


Writing language

Author's country
United States

Approx. 8,500 words

Notable lines

"The marvellous thing is that it's painless," he said.

— First line, "The Snows of Kilimanjaro"

It was not her fault that when he went to her he was already over. How could a woman know that you meant nothing that you said; that you spoke only from habit and to be comfortable? After he no longer meant what he said, his lies were more successful with women than when he had told them the truth.


However you make your living is where your talent lies.


The rich were dull and they drank too much or they played too much backgammon. They were dull and they were repetitious. He remembered poor Julian and his romantic awe of them and how he had started a story once that began, "The very rich are different from you and me." And how someone had said to Julian, "Yes, they have more money."

["He remembered poor Scott Fitzgerald..." in original story.]


Compie turned his head and grinned and pointed and there, ahead, all he could see, as wide as all the world, great, high, and unbelievably white in the sun, was the square top of Kilimanjaro. And then he knew that there was where he was going.


Outside the tent the hyena made the same strange noise that had awakened her. But she did not hear him for the beating of her heart.

— Last lines, "The Snows of Kilimanjaro"


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