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The Loss of the Ship Essex, Sunk by a Whale
1stPublisher: Penguin BooksFormat: Paperback
In 1820, the Nantucket whaleship Essex, thousands of miles from home in the South Pacific, was rammed by an angry sperm whale. The Essex sank, leaving twenty crew members floating in three small boats for ninety days. The incident was the Titanic story of its day, and provided the inspiration for Melville's Moby-Dick. The Narrative of the Wreck of the Whaleship Essex, by the ship's first mate, Owen Chase, has long been the fundamental account of the Essex's doomed voyage. But in 1980, a new account of the disaster was discovered, penned by Thomas Nickerson, the fifteen-year-old cabin boy who was steering the ship when the whale attacked. Now, Nickerson's harrowing tale can be read alongside Chase's in one authoritative edition, which includes more than a dozen other accounts from articles and newspapers, many of which have never appeared in book form.
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