Ahab makes a great impression on his first appearance in Moby Dick... And if either by birth or by circumstance something pathological was at work deep in his nature, this did not detract from his dramatic character. For tragic greatness always derives from a morbid break with health, you can be sure of that.
The older you get, the humbler you get. I know I don't have that much to offer, and I know I've now read Moby Dick and Anna Karenina , and if I had read those books before I wrote The Hottest State , I don't think I'd have published it. I had the arrogance of the uneducated, which sometimes you need.ethan hawke
"But what's this long face about, Mr. Starbuck; wilt thou not chase the white whale! art not game for Moby Dick?" "I am game for his crooked jaw, and for the jaws of Death too, Captain Ahab, if it fairly comes in the way of the business we follow; but I came here to hunt whales, not my commander's vengeance. How many barrels will thy vengeance yield thee even if thou gettest it, Captain Ahab? it will not fetch thee much in our Nantucket market."Herman Melville, in Moby-Dick; or, The Whale (1851), a discussion between Ahab and Starbuck, Ch. 36 : The Quarter-Deck
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