- Maturity- Huck begins as a typical boy, but throughout the novel, he witnesses several eye-opening events, that cause Huck to mature and grow.
- Friendship- Throughout the entire novel, Huck struggles over whether or not he should help Jim, but he comes to the conclusion that Jim has always been so nice and good to him. There is also the friendship between Huck and Tom Sawyer. Although Tom is more daring and audacious than Huck, they balance out and work well together. Huck was truly surprised when Tom agreed to help free Jim because of Tom's lack of maturity.
- Racism/ Slavery- During the 1830-40's, slavery and racism were still at its peak, especially in the south where Huck lived. There continued to be prejudism to Jim throughout the novel, with Tom and Huck, the duke and the dauphin, and also people in the town of Aunt Sally and Uncle Silas.
- Violence- Through the text, there were several examples of violence. When Huck and the frauds came across one town, they witnessed a shooting of a drunken man. When Huck stayed with the Grangerfords for a while, he became friends with one of the boys, Buck, who explained his families ongoing feud with a neighboring family. During his stay, Huck saw the affects of the feud first-hand. During the family's war, he saw his new friend get shot and die in the river. There was also the scene of Huck and Tom watching the duke and the dauphin get tarred and feathered by angry townspeople.
- Lying- Lying is a continuous theme throughout the novel. Huck had to come up with several quick lies and schemes in order to get his way out of trouble and to protect Jim and himself. He lied about Jim countless times while on the river, once pretending that it was really his sick dad that was in the raft. Jim also lies to Huck about the dead man they find, who Jim secretly saw was Huck's dad. When Huck ends up with the Grangerford's, he tells them that his name is "George Jackson". The lies continue when they come across two men who claim to be a king and a duke. It is clear right away to Huck that these two men are obviously lying, but he goes along with it to help Jim. The two frauds commit many scams in several towns along the river. They made up several lies with their play they came up with (lied to the public), and one of the worst lies; they claimed to be the brothers of a beloved father who just passed away. They scammed the whole town pretending to be the Wilks brothers, which eventually led Huck to mature and realize how cruel people can be sometimes. When Huck learned that the frauds sold Jim to a family close by, Huck decided that he had to find him. When he met the family, they immediately thought he was the boy they were looking for, Tom Sawyer. Naturally, Huck went along with the lie and as soon as the real Tom Sawyer got there, he too quickly joined the lie, pretending to be his own half-brother, Sid. Tom also did some of his own lying, not only to his aunt and uncle, but also to Huck and jim. He helped Jim escape, not telling any one in the mean time that he knew all along Jim was free.
- Loyalty- There are several instances in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, that show true loyalty. When Jim and Huck were on their journey to freedom together, Jim was always there for Huck. When Huck was too tired to be on the lookout at night (when they were with the duke and the king), Jim would let Huck sleep and be on the lookout himself. After struggling with doubts and worries, Huck eventually agreed to fully help Jim. When Jim was taken, Huck did everything he could to free him, even going with all the extreme plans Tom created. Huck and Jim created a truly nice friendship with each other and gained each other's trust. There was also loyalty between Huck and Tom. In the beginning of the novel, they were both young and naieve. They were good friends that seemed to have a lot of fun together. When Huck escaped and ended up at the Tom's aunt and uncle's house, he did not expect Tom to agree to help free Jim because Tom was not as experienced in life as Huck was at that point. He figured he would still find it appalling to want to help a black man. It surprised Huck when he said yes, but that just proved his loyalty and friendship even more. There was even a sense of loyalty between the duke and the dauphin. They came up with all their scams together and stood by each other through pretty much everything.
Huck and Jim listening to the duke and the king. A runaway slave.