Herman Melville, 1819–1891


Biographical note

Novelist, born in New York, and took to the sea, which led to strange adventures, including an imprisonment of some months in the hands of cannibals in the Marquesas Islands. His first novel, Typee [1846], is based upon this experience. Omoo followed in 1847, Moby Dick, or the White Whale, a powerful sea story, in 1852, and Israel Potter in 1855. He was a very unequal writer, but occasionally showed considerable power and originality.

[From A Short Biographical Dictionary of English Literature by John W. Cousin, 1910]



Short stories

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