The plummeting mercury gave life to Mark Twain’s musings about New England’s fickle weather.

Mainers who basked in the warm sun on Tuesday and Wednesday got a reality check Thursday morning when the temperature dipped to 5 degrees in Caribou, 17 degrees in Bangor and 25 degrees in Portland.

In Portland, the low temperature represented a 51-degree drop from a high of 76 the day before. As Twain once said, “One of the brightest gems in the New England weather is the dazzling uncertainty of it.”

In Caribou, the low of 5 degrees shattered the previous record for the date of 14 degrees set back in 1939.

Portland’s 25 degrees tied the record set in 1955 and Bangor’s 17 degrees tied the record set in 1930.

The cold weather will stick around for a while with high temperatures in the 40s for the next few days, the National Weather Service said.

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