Moby Dick Chapter 99 - 101
Chapter 99 - 101
The Doubloon/Leg and Arm/The Decanter
As mentioned before, Ahab would often take to pacing up and down the deck of ship; he also would look ever so often at the doubloon he had hammered into the mast of the ship. One morning, he stares at it, and speaks to it, finding in it signs of himself, and his interminable will.
Starbuck observes him, and sees dark omens in the coin after Ahab has gone below. Stubb sees him, and tries to find portents in the coin, and is unable. He sees Pip approaching, and leaves, unable to deal with the boy's madness.
The Pequod meets another ship, the Samuel Enderby of London. Ahab asks if they have any news of Moby-Dick, and in response, the captain, Captain Boomer, shows that one of his arms is an ivory rod with a hammer head on the end. Ahab immediately lowers and boat and goes to other ship; because of his ivory leg, a blubber hook must be lowered over the side to lift him up. Once aboard, he shakes Boomer's ivory arm with his ivory leg.
Boomer tells that they saw Moby-Dick on the Line, last season. They had harpooned one whale when Moby-Dick came out of nowhere and freed the fast-fish. The captain tried to capture Moby-Dick instead; in the violence that followed, he was flung from his boat, receiving a vicious wound on his arm. The ship's doctor, a man called Banger, was unable to heal the wound, and his arm was removed.
Ahab reveals that he is hunting the White Whale; Banger observes that Ahab's temperature is exceedingly high, but Ahab roars at him, and gets the directions that he wants from Boomer. He returns to the Pequod.
The Samuel Enderby hailed from London, and was named after the late Samuel Enderby, a merchant of the city, and originator of the famous whaling house Enderby and Sons. Enderby and Sons fitted out the first English ships to go whaling. English whalers are known for their good cheer, with lots of good meat and beer in their storeholds.