Desolation Island - Chapter 5 Summary & Analysis

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Chapter 5 Summary

Leopard sails south until entering the doldrums, which are encountered unusually far to the north. As the ship wallows, the prisoners' strange fever takes on a deadly turn for the worse and sickness runs throughout the ship. Maturin makes every effort to contain the disease—gaol fever—but to no avail. Scores die, including the captain's clerk and Martin, Maturin's assistant. Herapath is selected to replace him—as an American, he can only act as an assistant rather than receiving an appointment. Pullings sickens but clings to life. About six weeks pass as the ship lies becalmed and the disease runs its course—at the end, Maturin has a convalescent list of about sixty-five people; 116 have died. Leopard is left with fewer than 200 men as crew. Throughout the course of the disease Maturin subtly maneuvers Herapath, eventually pretending to...

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This section contains 775 words
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Buy the Desolation Island Study Guide
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