Speaking in an almost purely impressionist sense, times of restoration and right-wing retrenchment always bring with them their own reactionary romanticisms. While originating in reaction, these cultural and subcultural effects can nonetheless acquire an ambiguous quasi-autonomy from their political genesis.
Mark Twain probably never said this. It’s another case of the Mass Memory Discrepancy Effect, or if you prefer, the Mandela Effect, or still again, cultural mnemohistory (this is my preferred term). It’s strangely ‘meta’ then that the saying describes its own social genesis as a saying. Knowledge spreads, with many loud and knowledgeable people