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A recounting of a New England whaling ship's sinking by a giant whale in 1820, an experience that later inspired the great novel Moby-Dick. In the winter of 1820, the New England whaling ship Essex was assaulted by something no one could believe: a whale of mammoth size and will, and an almost human sense of vengeance.
Yet Nathaniel Philbrick ’s In the Heart of the Sea, a carefully and exhaustively documented account of the actual event, is reliable in recounting a tragedy that in its day was as well known as the...
Dec 11, 2015 · Synopsis. In the winter of 1820, the New England whaling ship Essex was assaulted by something no one could believe: a whale of mammoth size and will, and an almost human sense of vengeance. The real- life maritime disaster would inspire Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick. But that told only half the story.
In February 1823, the Two Brothers and the Martha are sailing west together toward new whaling ground when they run into... Read More. Epilogue. The epilogue tells the story of how a sperm whale washes up on the beach in Nantucket at the end of 1997.ChapterSummaryPrefaceThe year is 1821. For over a century, the global whale oil business has been centered in the tiny island of Nantucket, j... Read MoreChapter 1Thomas Nickerson is 14 when he steps onto the 87-foot Essex, a moment he calls "the most pleasing moment of [his] life."... Read MoreChapter 2Twenty-eight-year old George Pollard Jr. is a first-time captain. The Essex, which leaves on August 12, has three masts,... Read MoreChapter 3The crew fails to find additional boats for sale in the Azores, so they head toward Cape Verde Islands, where they pick ... Read More
Twenty-eight-year old George Pollard is a first-time captain. The clumsy work of the "green hands" (inexperienced sailors) attempting to prepare the Essex for departure is supervised by first mate Owen Chase, age 22, and second mate, Matthew Joy, 26. Once underway, the men are divided into two shifts or watches.
In the Heart of the Sea seeks to put together the various individual, and at times contrasting, accounts of what happened during that fateful trip. Owen Chase , the ship's first mate, had the most widely distributed version of the story, having the help of a ghostwriter, but Thomas Nickerson , the cabin boy and youngest member of the crew, also published a ragged manuscript account of the attack on the whaleship Essex .
During ninety days at sea under horrendous conditions, the survivors clung to life as one by one, they succumbed to hunger, thirst, disease, and fear. In the Heart of the Sea tells perhaps the greatest sea story ever. Philbrick interweaves his account of this extraordinary ordeal of ordinary men with a wealth of whale lore and with a brilliantly detailed portrait of the lost, unique community of Nantucket whalers.
Summary Thomas Nickerson is 14 when he steps onto the 87-foot Essex, a moment he calls "the most pleasing moment of [his] life." As a Nantucket boy he was taught to "idolize the form of a ship." In July 1819, the Essex is one of 70 whaleships cruising the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans.