Great Short Works of Herman Melville - Chapter 1 - The Town-Ho's Story Summary & Analysis

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The narrator tells a sea story to a group of Spaniards—the events described transpired prior of the opening of the narrative. The unnamed narrator is a seaman aboard an unnamed commercial whaler (presumably the Pequod). The vessel encounters the Town-Ho, a whaler returning to port. The two ships exchange news at length, even exchanging a few crewmen for a period of time. Some of Town-Ho's harpooners converse at length with Tashtego, one of the narrator's ship's harpooners. The narrator speaks with several crewmen from the Town-Ho. The Town-Ho is crewed by only a handful of men, and very few of them are Caucasian.

The narrator pieces together the entire story of events leading up to the Town-Ho's situation. The ship had enjoyed a prosperous voyage and was full of sperm oil. Among the ship's crew of thirty-six was Radney, the mate, and Steelkilt, a popular seaman. Both men...

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This section contains 735 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Great Short Works of Herman Melville Study Guide
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