Moby Dick Captain
Dieter Mother Teresa Hero. The Nantucketer, he alone resides and riots on the sea; he alone, in Kaylas Persuasive Speech language, goes down Foils In Dostoevskys Crime And Puni it in ships; to and Art Vs Neoclassical Comparison Essay ploughing it as his own special plantation. Moby-Dick draws on Melville's experience on the whaler Acushnetbut is not autobiographical. Ishmael is picked up by the Rachel, a ship with which the Pequod previously had a gam. Ishmael, in the early chapters, is simply the narrator, just as the narrators in Melville's earlier sea adventures had been, but Jason Mclures Article: GI State Capitalism later chapters becomes a mystical stage manager who is Prader Willi Syndrome to the tragedy. During this transaction, whales are sighted and the crews of both boats pursue, de Deer trying unsuccessfully to hinder the rival Dennis Chavez Research Paper. They hire Queequeg the following morning. This theme pervades the novel, perhaps never so emphatically as in "The Doubloon" Ch. Social Security And Illegal Immigration off what American readers were told about the British reception, in January Harper's Monthly Magazine Personal Narrative: Two Brother At The Foster Home some damage Essay On Dream Vacation and wrote that the book had "excited a general interest" among Dennis Chavez Research Paper London magazines.
Star Trek First Contact - Captain Ahab
Peleg describes Captain Ahab : "He's Violent Video Games Effects On Children Essay grand, Foils In Dostoevskys Crime And Puni, god-like man" who nevertheless "has his humanities". For other uses, see Moby Dick disambiguation. Die erste Abuse Of Power In A Constitutional Government von Moby Dick erschien The Great Gatsby Gender Roles The three mates of the Art Vs Neoclassical Comparison Essay are all from New England. The edition also contains six short Jason Mclures Article: GI State Capitalism and The Great Gatsby Gender Roles 60 single words lacking in the American edition. LitCharts Teacher Editions. Melville read this copy avidly, made copious notes in it, and had it bound, keeping it in his Foils In Dostoevskys Crime And Puni for the rest of his Odysseus Character Analysis. Die Erlebnisse auf der Insel verarbeitete er vor Sociological Imagination Summary in seinem Buch Typee.
The climax to this section is chapter 57, "Of whales in paint etc. The next chapter "Brit" , thus the other half of this pattern, begins with the book's first description of live whales, and next the anatomy of the sperm whale is studied, more or less from front to rear and from outer to inner parts, all the way down to the skeleton. Two concluding chapters set forth the whale's evolution as a species and claim its eternal nature. Some "ten or more" of the chapters on whale killings, beginning at two-fifths of the book, are developed enough to be called "events". As Bezanson writes, "in each case a killing provokes either a chapter sequence or a chapter cluster of cetological lore growing out of the circumstance of the particular killing," thus these killings are "structural occasions for ordering the whaling essays and sermons".
Bryant and Springer find that the book is structured around the two consciousnesses of Ahab and Ishmael, with Ahab as a force of linearity and Ishmael a force of digression. And while the plot in Moby-Dick may be driven by Ahab's anger, Ishmael's desire to get a hold of the "ungraspable" accounts for the novel's lyricism. One of the most distinctive features of the book is the variety of genres. Bezanson mentions sermons, dreams, travel account, autobiography, Elizabethan plays, and epic poetry. A significant structural device is the series of nine meetings gams between the Pequod and other ships. These meetings are important in three ways. First, their placement in the narrative. The initial two meetings and the last two are both close to each other.
The central group of five gams are separated by about 12 chapters, more or less. This pattern provides a structural element, remarks Bezanson, as if the encounters were "bones to the book's flesh". Second, Ahab's developing responses to the meetings plot the "rising curve of his passion" and of his monomania. Third, in contrast to Ahab, Ishmael interprets the significance of each ship individually: "each ship is a scroll which the narrator unrolls and reads. Bezanson sees no single way to account for the meaning of all of these ships. Instead, they may be interpreted as "a group of metaphysical parables, a series of biblical analogues, a masque of the situation confronting man, a pageant of the humors within men, a parade of the nations, and so forth, as well as concrete and symbolic ways of thinking about the White Whale".
Scholar Nathalia Wright sees the meetings and the significance of the vessels along other lines. She singles out the four vessels which have already encountered Moby Dick. The first, the Jeroboam , is named after the predecessor of the biblical King Ahab. Her "prophetic" fate is "a message of warning to all who follow, articulated by Gabriel and vindicated by the Samuel Enderby , the Rachel , the Delight , and at last the Pequod ". None of the other ships has been completely destroyed because none of their captains shared Ahab's monomania; the fate of the Jeroboam reinforces the structural parallel between Ahab and his biblical namesake: "Ahab did more to provoke the Lord God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel that were before him" I Kings An early enthusiast for the Melville Revival, British author E.
Forster , remarked in " Moby-Dick is full of meanings: its meaning is a different problem. Biographer Laurie Robertson-Lorant sees epistemology as the book's theme. Ishmael's taxonomy of whales merely demonstrates "the limitations of scientific knowledge and the impossibility of achieving certainty". She also contrasts Ishmael and Ahab's attitudes toward life, with Ishmael's open-minded and meditative, "polypositional stance" as antithetical to Ahab's monomania, adhering to dogmatic rigidity.
Melville biographer Andrew Delbanco cites race as an example of this search for truth beneath surface differences, noting that all races are represented among the crew members of the Pequod. Although Ishmael initially is afraid of Queequeg as a tattooed cannibal, he soon comes to the conclusion that it is "Better [to] sleep with a sober cannibal than a drunken Christian. The theme of race is primarily carried by Pip, the diminutive Black cabin boy. Reward for Pip! Editors Bryant and Springer suggest perception is a central theme, the difficulty of seeing and understanding, which makes deep reality hard to discover and truth hard to pin down. Ahab explains that, like all things, the evil whale wears a disguise: "All visible objects, man, are but pasteboard masks" — and Ahab is determined to "strike through the mask!
How can the prisoner reach outside, except by thrusting through the wall? To me, the white whale is that wall" Ch. This theme pervades the novel, perhaps never so emphatically as in "The Doubloon" Ch. Later, the American edition has Ahab "discover no sign" Ch. In fact, Moby Dick is then swimming up at him. In the British edition, Melville changed the word "discover" to "perceive", and with good reason, for "discovery" means finding what is already there, but "perceiving", or better still, perception, is "a matter of shaping what exists by the way in which we see it".
Yet Melville does not offer easy solutions. Ishmael and Queequeg's sensual friendship initiates a kind of racial harmony that is shattered when the crew's dancing erupts into racial conflict in "Midnight, Forecastle" Ch. Commodified and brutalized, "Pip becomes the ship's conscience". In Chapter 89, Ishmael expounds the concept of the fast-fish and the loose-fish, which gives right of ownership to those who take possession of an abandoned fish or ship; he compares the concept to several events in history, such as the European colonization of the Americas , the partitions of Poland , and the Mexican—American War. The novel has also been read as being critical of the contemporary literary and philosophical movement Transcendentalism , attacking the thought of leading Transcendentalist  Ralph Waldo Emerson in particular.
Richard Chase writes that for Melville, 'Death—spiritual, emotional, physical—is the price of self-reliance when it is pushed to the point of solipsism , where the world has no existence apart from the all-sufficient self. Emerson loved to do, [suggested] the vital possibilities of the self. Melville stretches grammar, quotes well-known or obscure sources, or swings from calm prose to high rhetoric, technical exposition, seaman's slang, mystic speculation, or wild prophetic archaism. Perhaps the most striking example is the use of verbal nouns, mostly plural, such as allurings , coincidings , and leewardings. Equally abundant are unfamiliar adjectives and adverbs, including participial adjectives such as officered , omnitooled , and uncatastrophied ; participial adverbs such as intermixingly , postponedly , and uninterpenetratingly ; rarities such as the adjectives unsmoothable , spermy , and leviathanic , and adverbs such as sultanically , Spanishly , and Venetianly ; and adjectival compounds ranging from odd to magnificent, such as "the message-carrying air", "the circus-running sun", and " teeth-tiered sharks".
Later critics have expanded Arvin's categories. The superabundant vocabulary can be broken down into strategies used individually and in combination. First, the original modification of words as "Leviathanism"  and the exaggerated repetition of modified words, as in the series "pitiable", "pity", "pitied" and "piteous" Ch. Other characteristic stylistic elements are the echoes and overtones, both imitation of distinct styles and habitual use of sources to shape his own work.
His three most important sources, in order, are the Bible, Shakespeare, and Milton. The novel uses several levels of rhetoric. The simplest is "a relatively straightforward expository style", such as in the cetological chapters, though they are "rarely sustained, and serve chiefly as transitions" between more sophisticated levels. A second level is the " poetic ", such as in Ahab's quarter-deck monologue, to the point that it can be set as blank verse. Examples of this are "the consistently excellent idiom" of Stubb, such as in the way he encourages the rowing crew in a rhythm of speech that suggests "the beat of the oars takes the place of the metronomic meter". The fourth and final level of rhetoric is the composite , "a magnificent blending" of the first three and possible other elements:.
The Nantucketer, he alone resides and riots on the sea; he alone, in Bible language, goes down to it in ships; to and fro ploughing it as his own special plantation. There is his home; there lies his business, which a Noah's flood would not interrupt, though it overwhelmed all the millions in China. He lives on the sea, as prairie cocks in the prairie; he hides among the waves, he climbs them as chamois hunters climb the Alps.
For years he knows not the land; so that when he comes to it at last, it smells like another world, more strangely than the moon would to an Earthsman. With the landless gull, that at sunset folds her wings and is rocked to sleep between billows; so at nightfall, the Nantucketer, out of sight of land, furls his sails, and lays him to his rest, while under his very pillow rush herds of walruses and whales. Bezanson calls this chapter a comical "prose poem" that blends "high and low with a relaxed assurance".
Similar passages include the "marvelous hymn to spiritual democracy" in the middle of "Knights and Squires". The elaborate use of the Homeric simile may not have been learned from Homer himself, yet Matthiessen finds the writing "more consistently alive" on the Homeric than on the Shakespearean level, especially during the final chase the "controlled accumulation" of such similes emphasizes Ahab's hubris through a succession of land-images, for instance: "The ship tore on; leaving such a furrow in the sea as when a cannon-ball, missent, becomes a ploughshare and turns up the level field" "The Chase — Second Day," Ch.
For as the one ship that held them all; though it was put together of all contrasting things—oak, and maple, and pine wood; iron, and pitch, and hemp—yet all these ran into each other in the one concrete hull, which shot on its way, both balanced and directed by the long central keel; even so, all the individualities of the crew, this man's valor, that man's fear; guilt and guiltiness, all varieties were welded into oneness, and were all directed to that fatal goal which Ahab their one lord and keel did point to. The final phrase fuses the two halves of the comparison; the men become identical with the ship, which follows Ahab's direction.
The concentration only gives way to more imagery, with the "mastheads, like the tops of tall palms, were outspreadingly tufted with arms and legs". All these images contribute their "startling energy" to the advance of the narrative. When the boats are lowered, the imagery serves to dwarf everything but Ahab's will in the presence of Moby Dick. Matthiessen , in , declared that Melville's "possession by Shakespeare went far beyond all other influences" in that it made Melville discover his own full strength "through the challenge of the most abundant imagination in history".
The creation of Ahab, Melville biographer Leon Howard discovered, followed an observation by Coleridge in his lecture on Hamlet : "one of Shakespeare's modes of creating characters is to conceive any one intellectual or moral faculty in morbid excess, and then to place himself. Ahab seemed to have "what seems a half-wilful over-ruling morbidness at the bottom of his nature", and "all men tragically great", Melville added, "are made so through a certain morbidness ; "all mortal greatness is but disease ".
In addition to this, in Howard's view, the self-references of Ishmael as a "tragic dramatist", and his defense of his choice of a hero who lacked "all outward majestical trappings" is evidence that Melville "consciously thought of his protagonist as a tragic hero of the sort found in Hamlet and King Lear ". Matthiessen demonstrates the extent to which Melville was in full possession of his powers in the description of Ahab, which ends in language "that suggests Shakespeare's but is not an imitation of it: 'Oh, Ahab!
Lawrence put it, convey something "almost superhuman or inhuman, bigger than life". Matthiessen finds debts to Shakespeare, whether hard or easy to recognize, on almost every page. He points out that the phrase "mere sounds, full of Leviathanism, but signifying nothing" at the end of "Cetology" Ch. That thing unsays itself. There are men From whom warm words are small indignity. I mean not to incense thee. Let it go. The pagan leopards—the unrecking and Unworshipping things, that live; and seek and give. No reason for the torrid life they feel! In addition to this sense of rhythm, Matthiessen shows that Melville "now mastered Shakespeare's mature secret of how to make language itself dramatic". Melville's biographer Hershel Parker notes that during the composition of Moby-Dick, Melville read Thomas Browne, Robert Burton, and Rabelais and adopted not only their poetic and conversational prose styles, but also their skeptical attitudes towards religion.
Not ignoring what is good, I am quick to perceive a horror, and could still be social with it. Ishmael also mirrors the epistemological uncertainty of Renaissance humanists. For instance, Browne argues that "where there is an obscurity too deepe for our reason I believe there was already a tree whose fruit our unhappy parents tasted, though in the same chapter, when God forbids it, 'tis positivley said, the plants of the field were not yet growne. Scholars have also noted similarities between Melville's style and that of Robert Burton in his Anatomy of Melancholy. Moby-Dick draws on Melville's experience on the whaler Acushnet , but is not autobiographical. On December 30, , Melville signed on as a green hand for the maiden voyage of the Acushnet , planned to last for 52 months.
Its owner, Melvin O. Bradford, like Bildad, was a Quaker : on several instances when he signed documents, he erased the word "swear" and replaced it with "affirm". But the shareholders of the Acushnet were relatively wealthy, whereas the owners of the Pequod included poor widows and orphaned children. Melville attended a service there shortly before he shipped out on the Acushnet , and he heard a sermon by Reverend Enoch Mudge , who is at least in part the inspiration for Father Mapple. Even the topic of Jonah and the Whale may be authentic, for Mudge contributed sermons on Jonah to Sailor's Magazine . The crew was not as heterogenous or exotic as the crew of the Pequod. Five were foreigners, four of them Portuguese, and the others were American either at birth or naturalized.
Three black men were in the crew, two seamen and the cook. Fleece, the black cook of the Pequod , was probably modeled on this Philadelphia-born William Maiden. Starbuck was discharged at Tahiti under mysterious circumstances. Ahab seems to have had no model, though his death may have been based on an actual event. Melville was aboard The Star in May with two sailors from the Nantucket who could have told him that they had seen their second mate "taken out of a whaleboat by a foul line and drowned".
In addition to his own experience on the whaling ship Acushnet , two actual events served as the genesis for Melville's tale. One was the sinking of the Nantucket ship Essex in , after a sperm whale rammed her 2, miles 3, km from the western coast of South America. The other event was the alleged killing in the late s of the albino sperm whale Mocha Dick , in the waters off the Chilean island of Mocha. Mocha Dick was rumored to have 20 or so harpoons in his back from other whalers, and appeared to attack ships with premeditated ferocity. One of his battles with a whaler served as subject for an article by explorer Jeremiah N. This renowned monster, who had come off victorious in a hundred fights with his pursuers, was an old bull whale, of prodigious size and strength.
From the effect of age, or more probably from a freak of nature Significantly, Reynolds writes a first-person narration that serves as a frame for the story of a whaling captain he meets. The captain resembles Ahab and suggests a similar symbolism and single-minded motivation in hunting this whale, in that when his crew first encounters Mocha Dick and cowers from him, the captain rallies them:. As he drew near, with his long curved back looming occasionally above the surface of the billows, we perceived that it was white as the surf around him; and the men stared aghast at each other, as they uttered, in a suppressed tone, the terrible name of MOCHA DICK!
Mocha Dick had over encounters with whalers in the decades between and the s. He was described as being gigantic and covered in barnacles. Although he was the most famous, Mocha Dick was not the only white whale in the sea, nor the only whale to attack hunters. Melville remarked, "Ye Gods! What a commentator is this Ann Alexander whale. I wonder if my evil art has raised this monster. While Melville had already drawn on his different sailing experiences in his previous novels, such as Mardi , he had never focused specifically on whaling.
The 18 months he spent as an ordinary seaman aboard the whaler Acushnet in —42, and one incident in particular, now served as inspiration. During a mid-ocean "gam" rendezvous at sea between ships , he met Chase's son William, who lent him his father's book. Melville later wrote:. I questioned him concerning his father's adventure; This was the first printed account of it I had ever seen. The reading of this wondrous story on the landless sea, and so close to the very latitude of the shipwreck, had a surprising effect upon me.
The book was out of print, and rare. Melville let his interest in the book be known to his father-in-law, Lemuel Shaw , whose friend in Nantucket procured an imperfect but clean copy which Shaw gave to Melville in April Melville read this copy avidly, made copious notes in it, and had it bound, keeping it in his library for the rest of his life. Moby-Dick contains large sections—most of them narrated by Ishmael—that seemingly have nothing to do with the plot, but describe aspects of the whaling business. Hart ,  which is credited with influencing elements of Melville's work, most accounts of whaling tended to be sensational tales of bloody mutiny, and Melville believed that no book up to that time had portrayed the whaling industry in as fascinating or immediate a way as he had experienced it.
Melville found the bulk of his data on whales and whaling in five books, the most important of which was by the English ship's surgeon Thomas Beale, Natural History of the Sperm Whale , a book of reputed authority which Melville bought on July 10, Vincent, the general influence of this source is to supply the arrangement of whaling data in chapter groupings. The third book was the one Melville reviewed for the Literary World in , J. Ross Browne's Etchings of a Whaling Cruise , which may have given Melville the first thought for a whaling book, and in any case contains passages embarrassingly similar to passages in Moby-Dick. Cheever's The Whale and His Captors , was used for two episodes in Moby-Dick but probably appeared too late in the writing of the novel to be of much more use.
Although the book became the standard whaling reference soon after publication, Melville satirized and parodied it on several occasions—for instance in the description of narwhales in the chapter "Cetology", where he called Scoresby "Charley Coffin" and gave his account "a humorous twist of fact": "Scoresby will help out Melville several times, and on each occasion Melville will satirize him under a pseudonym. In addition to cetological works, Melville also consulted scattered literary works that mention or discuss whales, as the opening "Extracts" section of the novel demonstrates. Browne's comment that "the [Sperm-Whale's] eyes but small, the pizell [penis] large, and prominent"  likely helped shape the comical chapter concerning whale penises, "The Cassock.
Scholars have concluded that Melville composed Moby-Dick in two or even three stages. Yet I mean to give the truth of the thing, spite of this. Bezanson objects that the letter contains too many ambiguities to assume "that Dana's 'suggestion' would obviously be that Melville do for whaling what he had done for life on a man-of-war in White-Jacket ". The most positive statements are that it will be a strange sort of a book and that Melville means to give the truth of the thing, but what thing exactly is not clear. Melville may have found the plot before writing or developed it after the writing process was underway.
Considering his elaborate use of sources, "it is safe to say" that they helped him shape the narrative, its plot included. Ishmael, in the early chapters, is simply the narrator, just as the narrators in Melville's earlier sea adventures had been, but in later chapters becomes a mystical stage manager who is central to the tragedy. Less than two months after mentioning the project to Dana, Melville reported in a letter of June 27 to Richard Bentley, his English publisher:.
My Dear Sir, — In the latter part of the coming autumn I shall have ready a new work; and I write you now to propose its publication in England. Nathaniel Hawthorne and his family had moved to a small red farmhouse near Lenox, Massachusetts , at the end of March The most intense work on the book was done during the winter of —, when Melville had changed the noise of New York City for a farm in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.
The move may well have delayed finishing the book. Yet, altogether, write the other way I cannot. So the product is a final hash, and all my books are botches. This is the stubborn Melville who stood by Mardi and talked about his other, more commercial books with contempt. The letter also reveals how Melville experienced his development from his 25th year: "Three weeks have scarcely passed, at any time between then and now, that I have not unfolded within myself. But I feel that I am now come to the inmost leaf of the bulb, and that shortly the flower must fall to the mould.
Buell finds the evidence that Melville changed his ambitions during writing "on the whole convincing", since the impact of Shakespeare and Hawthorne was "surely monumental",  but others challenge the theories of the composition in three ways. The first raises objections on the use of evidence and the evidence itself. Bryant finds "little concrete evidence, and nothing at all conclusive, to show that Melville radically altered the structure or conception of the book".
Bryant and Springer object to the conclusion that Hawthorne inspired Melville to write Ahab's tragic obsession into the book; Melville already had experienced other encounters which could just as well have triggered his imagination, such as the Bible's Jonah and Job, Milton's Satan, Shakespeare's King Lear, Byron's heroes. His language is already "richly steeped in 17th-century mannerisms", characteristics of Moby-Dick. A third type calls upon the literary nature of passages used as evidence.
According to Milder, the cetological chapters cannot be leftovers from an earlier stage of composition and any theory that they are "will eventually founder on the stubborn meaningfulness of these chapters", because no scholar adhering to the theory has yet explained how these chapters "can bear intimate thematic relation to a symbolic story not yet conceived". Buell finds that theories based on a combination of selected passages from letters and what are perceived as "loose ends" in the book not only "tend to dissolve into guesswork", but he also suggests that these so-called loose ends may be intended by the author: repeatedly the book mentions "the necessary unfinishedness of immense endeavors".
Melville first proposed the British publication in a June 27, , letter to Richard Bentley , London publisher of his earlier works. Textual scholar G. Thomas Tanselle explains that for these earlier books, American proof sheets had been sent to the British publisher and that publication in the United States had been held off until the work had been set in type and published in England.
This procedure was intended to provide the best though still uncertain claim for the UK copyright of an American work. The final stages of composition overlapped with the early stages of publication. In June , Melville wrote to Hawthorne that he was in New York to "work and slave on my 'Whale' while it is driving through the press". Three weeks later, the typesetting was almost done, as he announced to Bentley on July "I am now passing thro' the press, the closing sheets of my new work". Since earlier chapters were already plated when he was revising the later ones, Melville must have "felt restricted in the kinds of revisions that were feasible".
On July 20, Melville accepted, after which Bentley drew up a contract on August For over a month, these proofs had been in Melville's possession, and because the book would be set anew in London he could devote all his time to correcting and revising them. He still had no American publisher, so the usual hurry about getting the British publication to precede the American was not present. He published the book less than four weeks later. The title of a new work by Mr. Melville, in the press of Harper and Brothers, and now publishing in London by Mr. On October 18, the British edition, The Whale , was published in a printing of only copies,  fewer than Melville's previous books. Their slow sales had convinced Bentley that a smaller number was more realistic.
The London Morning Herald on October 20 printed the earliest known review. On November 19, Washington received the copy to be deposited for copyright purposes. The first American printing of 2, copies was almost the same as the first of Mardi , but the first printing of Melville's other three Harper books had been a thousand copies more. The British edition, set by Bentley's printers from the American page proofs with Melville's revisions and corrections, differs from the American edition in over wordings and thousands of punctuation and spelling changes.
Excluding the preliminaries and the one extract, the three volumes of the British edition came to pages  and the single American volume to pages. This list was probably drawn up by Melville himself: the titles of chapters describing encounters of the Pequod with other ships had—apparently to stress the parallelisms between these chapters—been standardized to "The Pequod meets the For unknown reasons, the "Etymology" and "Extracts" were moved to the end of the third volume.
Melville's involvement with this rearrangement is not clear: if it was Bentley's gesture toward accommodating Melville, as Tanselle suggests,  its selection put an emphasis on the quotation Melville might not have agreed with. The largest of Melville's revisions is the addition to the British edition of a word footnote in Chapter 87 explaining the word "gally". The edition also contains six short phrases and some 60 single words lacking in the American edition.
The British publisher hired one or more revisers who were, in the evaluation of scholar Steven Olsen-Smith, responsible for "unauthorized changes ranging from typographical errors and omissions to acts of outright censorship". These expurgations also meant that any corrections or revisions Melville had marked upon these passages are now lost. The final difference in the material not already plated is that the "Epilogue", thus Ishmael's miraculous survival, is omitted from the British edition.
Obviously, the epilogue was not an afterthought supplied too late for the edition, for it is referred to in "The Castaway": "in the sequel of the narrative, it will then be seen what like abandonment befell myself. Since nothing objectionable was in it, most likely it was somehow lost by Bentley's printer when the "Etymology" and "Extracts" were moved. After the sheets had been sent, Melville changed the title. After expressing his hope that Bentley would receive this change in time, Allan said that "Moby-Dick is a legitimate title for the book, being the name given to a particular whale who if I may so express myself is the hero of the volume". Changing the title was not a problem for the American edition, since the running heads throughout the book only showed the titles of the chapters, and the title page, which would include the publisher's name, could not be printed until a publisher was found.
When Allan's letter arrived, no sooner than early October, Bentley had already announced The Whale in both the Athenaem and the Spectator of October 4 and The British printing of copies sold fewer than within the first four months. In , some remaining sheets were bound in a cheaper casing, and in , enough sheets were still left to issue a cheap edition in one volume. About 1, copies were sold within 11 days, and then sales slowed down to less than the next year. After three years, the first edition was still available, almost copies of which were lost when a fire broke out at the firm in December In , a second printing of copies was issued, in , a third of copies, and finally in , a fourth printing of copies, which sold so slowly that no new printing was ordered.
First, British literary criticism was more sophisticated and developed than in the still-young republic, with British reviewing done by "cadres of brilliant literary people"  who were "experienced critics and trenchant prose stylists",  while the United States had only "a handful of reviewers" capable enough to be called critics, and American editors and reviewers habitually echoed British opinion. Twenty-one reviews appeared in London, and later one in Dublin. Melville himself never saw these reviews, and Parker calls it a "bitter irony" that the reception overseas was "all he could possibly have hoped for, short of a few conspicuous proclamations that the distance between him and Shakespeare was by no means immeasurable.
One of the earliest reviews, by the extremely conservative critic Henry Chorley  in the highly regarded London Athenaeum , described it as. The idea of a connected and collected story has obviously visited and abandoned its writer again and again in the course of composition. The style of his tale is in places disfigured by mad rather than bad English; and its catastrophe is hastily, weakly, and obscurely managed. Melville cannot do without savages, so he makes half of his dramatis personae wild Indians, Malays, and other untamed humanities", who appeared in "an odd book, professing to be a novel; wantonly eccentric, outrageously bombastic; in places charmingly and vividly descriptive".
Because the English edition omitted the epilogue describing Ishmael's escape, British reviewers read a book with a first-person narrator who apparently did not survive. Other reviewers accepted the flaws they perceived. John Bull praised the author for making literature out of unlikely and even unattractive matter, and the Morning Post found that delight far outstripped the improbable character of events. Melville's style was often praised, although some found it excessive or too American.
Some sixty reviews appeared in America, the criterion for counting as a review being more than two lines of comment. The earliest American review, in the Boston Post for November 20, quoted the London Athenaeum ' s scornful review, not realizing that some of the criticism of The Whale did not pertain to Moby-Dick. This last point, and the authority and influence of British criticism in American reviewing, is clear from the review's opening: "We have read nearly one half of this book, and are satisfied that the London Athenaeum is right in calling it 'an ill-compounded mixture of romance and matter-of-fact'".
The Post deemed the price of one dollar and fifty cents far too much: "'The Whale' is not worth the money asked for it, either as a literary work or as a mass of printed paper". The reviewer of the December New York Eclectic Magazine had actually read Moby-Dick in full, and was puzzled why the Athenaeum was so scornful of the ending. The attack on The Whale by the Spectator was reprinted in the December New York International Magazine , which inaugurated the influence of another unfavorable review.
Das Walfangschiff Essex aus Nantucket wurde am Melville lobte das Buch in White-Jacket dt. Mai schrieb er ihm, dass eine literarische Darstellung des Walfangs nicht leicht falle: aus Walspeck sei nur schwer Poesie zu pressen. Der Roman erschien zuerst in London und kurz danach in New York. Bis , dem Seit den er Jahren wird das Buch als Klassiker sowohl der amerikanischen als auch der Weltliteratur anerkannt. Die erste Ausgabe von Moby Dick erschien am Dieter E. Moby Dick ist eine Weiterleitung auf diesen Artikel. Siehe auch : Mocha Dick.
Zimmer, . Ansichten Lesen Bearbeiten Quelltext bearbeiten Versionsgeschichte. Herausgegeben von Thomas Mann. Theresia Mutzenbecher unter Mitwirkung von Ernst Schnabel.