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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 623 pages of information about Moby Dick.
well.  Yes, these eyes are windows, and this body of mine is the house.  What a pity they didn’t stop up the chinks and the crannies though, and thrust in a little lint here and there.  But it’s too late to make any improvements now.  The universe is finished; the copestone is on, and the chips were carted off a million years ago.  Poor Lazarus there, chattering his teeth against the curbstone for his pillow, and shaking off his tatters with his shiverings, he might plug up both ears with rags, and put a corn-cob into his mouth, and yet that would not keep out the tempestuous Euroclydon.  Euroclydon! says old Dives, in his red silken wrapper—­(he had a redder one afterwards) pooh, pooh!  What a fine frosty night; how Orion glitters; what northern lights!  Let them talk of their oriental summer climes of everlasting conservatories; give me the privilege of making my own summer with my own coals.

But what thinks Lazarus?  Can he warm his blue hands by holding them up to the grand northern lights?  Would not Lazarus rather be in Sumatra than here?  Would he not far rather lay him down lengthwise along the line of the equator; yea, ye gods! go down to the fiery pit itself, in order to keep out this frost?

Now, that Lazarus should lie stranded there on the curbstone before the door of Dives, this is more wonderful than that an iceberg should be moored to one of the Moluccas.  Yet Dives himself, he too lives like a Czar in an ice palace made of frozen sighs, and being a president of a temperance society, he only drinks the tepid tears of orphans.

But no more of this blubbering now, we are going a-whaling, and there is plenty of that yet to come.  Let us scrape the ice from our frosted feet, and see what sort of a place this “Spouter” may be.

CHAPTER 3

The Spouter-Inn

Entering that gable-ended Spouter-Inn, you found yourself in a wide, low, straggling entry with old-fashioned wainscots, reminding one of the bulwarks of some condemned old craft.  On one side hung a very large oil painting so thoroughly besmoked, and every way defaced, that in the unequal crosslights by which you viewed it, it was only by diligent study and a series of systematic visits to it, and careful inquiry of the neighbors, that you could any way arrive at an understanding of its purpose.  Such unaccountable masses of shades and shadows, that at first you almost thought some ambitious young artist, in the time of the New England hags, had endeavored to delineate chaos bewitched.  But by dint of much and earnest contemplation, and oft repeated ponderings, and especially by throwing open the little window towards the back of the entry, you at last come to the conclusion that such an idea, however wild, might not be altogether unwarranted.

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