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In 1841, while aboard the whaler Acushnet, Herman Melville met William Chase among another ship's complement. William lent Melville a book by his father, Owen Chase: "Narrative of the Most Extraordinary and Distressing Shipwreck of the Whale-Ship Essex." Melville had read Jeremiah Reynolds's violent account of a sperm whale "white as wool," named -- for his haunt near Mocha Island, off the coast of Chile -- Mocha Dick. It's unknown what led Melville to tweak Mocha to "Moby." Good thing he did, and that Starbuck was the name he gave his first mate rather than his captain. Otherwise the novel would follow Starbuck's obsession with a Mocha.

     -- Carl Safina, NYT essay

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Fri Nov 6th, 2020 at 06:07:51 PM EST

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