H.M.S. Surprise Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 53 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of H.M.S. Surprise.
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Adventure on the High Seas

The novel's principle setting is the high seas during a time of war; Napoleon Bonaparte's military adventures threaten the British Empire and only a strong naval response keeps the French aggression at bay and ensures the survival of the empire. As a post captain of the Royal Navy, Jack Aubrey's sworn and obvious duty is to engage and destroy the French at every opportunity. He carries out this duty first with H.M.S. Lively and later with H.M.S. Surprise, engaging the French successfully on both occasions. Aubrey's particular friend Stephen Maturin also stands in opposition to the French, finding their governmental system tyrannical and offensive. He participates as an intelligence officer—a spy—in the defense of England.

The novel relates two sea voyages in the year 1804; although the voyages are fictional they contain many historical elements and the...

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This section contains 953 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the H.M.S. Surprise Study Guide
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