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A nonexhaustive list of people who have compared themselves to Hemingway

Michael Vadon/CC BY-SA 4.0
Guilty as charged?
  • Natasha Frost
By Natasha Frost


Published Last updated on This article is more than 2 years old.

When Twitter increased its character count to 280, Donald Trump wasn’t sure what to think, Bob Woodward reports in his new book Fear: Trump in the White House.

“It’s a good thing,” the US president is quoted as saying, “but it’s a bit of a shame because I was the Ernest Hemingway of 140 characters.”

Trump’s estimation of himself, despite the recent splashy headlines, isn’t new: As far back as 2015, Trump boasted about his purported similarity to the legendary Pulitzer Prize novelist. He’s in illustrious company, to cite just a few wordsmiths and others who put themselves in Papa’s league—or above:

Hemingway himself claimed to be in the ring with literary greats Turgenev and Tolstoy—who compared themselves to a banana and a rower. It’s baffling stuff, but still not as baffling as picking an anti-semitic, homophobic, woman-hating “literary cave man” as your go-to personal hero.

Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly said Twitter had reduced its character count to 280. It was the number it was increased to from 140.

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