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Fotografia dell'autore. Etching of Joseph O. Eaton's portrait of Herman Melville Published c. 1944, painting created before 1891

Etching of Joseph O. Eaton's portrait of Herman Melville Published c. 1944, painting created before 1891

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Herman Melville (August 1, 1819 - September 28, 1891) was born into a seemingly secure, prosperous world, a descendant of prominent Dutch and English families long established in New York State. That security vanished when first, the family business failed, and then, two years later, in young Melville's thirteenth year, his father died. Without enough money to gain the formal education that professions required, Melville was thrown on his own resources and in 1841 sailed off on a whaling ship bound for the South Seas. His experiences at sea during the next four years were to form in part the basis of his best fiction. Melville's first two books, Typee (1846) and Omoo (1847), were partly romance and partly autobiographical travel books set in the South Seas. Both were popular successes, particularly Typee, which included a stay among cannibals and a romance with a South Sea maiden. During the next several years, Melville published three more romances that drew upon his experiences at sea: Redburn (1849) and White-Jacket (1850), both fairly realistic accounts of the sailor's life and depicting the loss of innocence of central characters; and Mardi (1849), which, like the other two books, began as a romance of adventure but turned into an allegorical critique of contemporary American civilization. Moby Dick (1851) also began as an adventure story, based on Melville's experiences aboard the whaling ship. However, in the writing of it inspired in part by conversations with his friend and neighbor Hawthorne and partly by his own irrepressible imagination and reading of Shakespeare and other Renaissance dramatists Melville turned the book into something so strange that, when it appeared in print, many of his readers and critics were dumbfounded, even outraged. By the mid-1850s, Melville's literary reputation was all but destroyed, and he was obliged to live the rest of his life taking whatever jobs he could find and borrowing money from relatives, who fortunately were always in a position to help him. He continued to write, however, and published some marvelous short fiction pieces Benito Cereno" (1855) and "Bartleby, the Scrivener" (1853) are the best. He also published several volumes of poetry, the most important of which was Battle Pieces and Aspects of the War (1866), poems of occasionally great power that were written in response to the moral challenge of the Civil War. His posthumously published work, Billy Budd (1924), on which he worked up until the time of his death, became Melville's last significant literary work, a brilliant short novel that movingly describes a young sailor's imprisonment and death. Melville's reputation, however, rests most solidly on his great epic romance, Moby Dick. It is a difficult as well as a brilliant book, and many critics have offered interpretations of its complicated ambiguous symbolism. Darrel Abel briefly summed up Moby Dick as "the story of an attempt to search the unsearchable ways of God," although the book has historical, political, and moral implications as well. Melville died at his home in New York City early on the morning of September 28, 1891, at age 72. The doctor listed "cardiac dilation" on the death certificate. He was interred in the Woodlawn Cemetery in The Bronx, New York, along with his wife, Elizabeth Shaw Melville. (Bowker Author Biography)
— biografia da Moby Dick
… (altro)
Moby Dick 31,049 copie, 488 recensioni
Barthleby lo scrivano 2,500 copie, 85 recensioni
Billy Budd il marinaio 2,360 copie, 49 recensioni
Taipi 1,972 copie, 37 recensioni
Billy Budd e altri racconti (Autore) 1,807 copie, 13 recensioni
Moby-Dick [Norton Critical Edition] 1,149 copie, 8 recensioni
L' uomo di fiducia: una mascherata 1,088 copie, 13 recensioni
Billy Budd and Other Tales (Autore) 888 copie, 9 recensioni
Bartleby, lo scrivano. Benito Cereno 841 copie, 10 recensioni
Pierre; or, The Ambiguities 676 copie, 4 recensioni
Redburn / White-Jacket / Moby Dick 647 copie, 8 recensioni
Benito Cereno 600 copie, 21 recensioni
Melville: Typee, Omoo, Mardi 580 copie, 5 recensioni
Giacchetta bianca 563 copie, 5 recensioni
Great Short Works of Herman Melville 534 copie, 2 recensioni
La nave di vetro 530 copie, 7 recensioni
Graphic Classics: Moby Dick 485 copie, 13 recensioni
Omoo 437 copie, 8 recensioni
Two Tales: Billy Budd and Benito Cereno (Autore) 230 copie, 3 recensioni
Mardi e un viaggio laggiu 215 copie, 5 recensioni
The Piazza Tales 176 copie, 4 recensioni
Selected Poems of Herman Melville 161 copie, 3 recensioni
The Shorter Novels of Herman Melville (Autore) 157 copie, 1 recensione
The Portable Melville 140 copie, 1 recensione
Four Short Novels 135 copie, 2 recensioni
Tales, Poems, and Other Writings 120 copie, 1 recensione
The Maldive Shark 103 copie, 5 recensioni
Moby Dick 69 copie
Moby Dick, Billy Budd 62 copie, 2 recensioni
Moby Dick 56 copie, 4 recensioni
Moby Dick (Source Author) 47 copie, 5 recensioni
I And My Chimney 42 copie, 1 recensione
Moby Dick [Penguin Readers] 37 copie, 8 recensioni
Marvel Illustrated: Moby Dick (Original from) 37 copie
Billy Budd [Macmillan Readers] 24 copie, 9 recensioni
Moby Dick (Now Age Books) 16 copie, 1 recensione
Three Stories 15 copie
Short Stories 12 copie
Moby Dick 8 copie
The Bell-Tower 6 copie, 1 recensione
Norfolk Isle & the Chola widow 6 copie, 1 recensione
Viajar 6 copie, 1 recensione
Bartleby, le scribe (Autore) 4 copie
Typee & Omoo 4 copie
Five tales 3 copie
Racconti 3 copie
TAIPII 2 copie
The Fiddler 2 copie
Typee, Omoo 2 copie
Oszust 1 copia
Moby Dick 35/22N 1 copia, 1 recensione
(all) 1 copia
MOBY DICK 1 copia
Modydick 1 copia
Ca Voi Trang 1 copia
Annales 1 copia
Moby Dick 1 copia
La veranda 1 copia
Contos 1 copia
Fives Tales 1 copia
John Marr 1 copia
Le Campanile 1 copia
Short novels 1 copia
A bord 1 copia
"Shiloh" 1 copia
Opere scelte 1 copia
Hôtel de la baleine 1 copia, 1 recensione
Obras 1 copia
The Oxford Book of American Short Stories (Collaboratore) 680 copie, 2 recensioni
Great American Short Stories (Collaboratore) 432 copie, 2 recensioni
American Gothic Tales (Collaboratore) 408 copie, 5 recensioni
A Pocket Book of Modern Verse (Collaboratore, alcune edizioni) 407 copie, 1 recensione
Fifty Great American Short Stories (Collaboratore) 385 copie, 4 recensioni
Literature: The Human Experience (Collaboratore) 312 copie
75 Short Masterpieces: Stories from the World's Literature (Collaboratore) 271 copie, 1 recensione
Six Great Modern Short Novels (Collaboratore) 259 copie, 2 recensioni
Writing New York: A Literary Anthology (Collaboratore) 255 copie, 4 recensioni
The Treasury of American Short Stories (Collaboratore) 248 copie, 1 recensione
The World's Greatest Short Stories (Collaboratore) 220 copie
The Civil War: The First Year Told By Those Who Lived It (Collaboratore) 213 copie, 1 recensione
The Penguin Book of American Short Stories (Collaboratore) 171 copie, 1 recensione
The Civil War: The Second Year Told By Those Who Lived It (Collaboratore) 148 copie, 1 recensione
Short Novels of the Masters (Collaboratore) 141 copie, 1 recensione
Black Water 2: More Tales of the Fantastic (Collaboratore) 141 copie, 3 recensioni
American Religious Poems: An Anthology (Collaboratore) 138 copie, 1 recensione
Life in the Iron Mills [Bedford Cultural Editions] (Collaboratore) 127 copie, 2 recensioni
An Anthology of Famous American Stories (Collaboratore) 124 copie
The Civil War: The Third Year Told by Those Who Lived It (Collaboratore) 124 copie, 1 recensione
A Comprehensive Anthology of American Poetry (Collaboratore) 122 copie, 2 recensioni
The Big Book of Classic Fantasy (Collaboratore) 118 copie, 3 recensioni
Stories of the Sea (Collaboratore) 110 copie, 2 recensioni
The Frankenstein Omnibus (Collaboratore) 95 copie, 2 recensioni
American Fantastic Tales: Boxed Set (Collaboratore) 88 copie, 2 recensioni
Poets of the Civil War (Collaboratore) 83 copie, 1 recensione
American Short Stories (Collaboratore, alcune edizioni) 81 copie
A Treasury of Civil War Stories (Collaboratore) 59 copie
Seven Short Novel Masterpieces (Collaboratore) 57 copie
The Blithedale Romance [Norton Critical Edition, 2nd ed.] (Collaboratore) 52 copie, 1 recensione
Moby Dick [1998 TV mini-series] 42 copie, 1 recensione
The Oxford Book of Sea Stories (Collaboratore) 39 copie, 1 recensione
In Dreams Awake (Collaboratore) 39 copie
Horror Stories: Classic Tales from Hoffmann to Hodgson (Collaboratore) 37 copie, 1 recensione
The Book of the Sea (Collaboratore) 35 copie
Poetry of Witness: The Tradition in English, 1500-2001 (Collaboratore) 35 copie, 1 recensione
Mysterious Sea Stories (Collaboratore) 27 copie
The Best Crime Stories Ever Told (Collaboratore) 25 copie, 1 recensione
American short novels (Collaboratore) 25 copie
Best South Sea Stories (Collaboratore) 25 copie
Beau Travail [1999 film] (Original story) 24 copie
American Literature: The Makers and the Making (In Two Volumes) (Collaboratore, alcune edizioni) 24 copie
Short Stories of the Sea (Collaboratore) 23 copie
Eight Short Novels (Collaboratore) 22 copie
The Best Sea Stories (Collaboratore) 19 copie
The Penguin book of the ocean (Collaboratore) 19 copie
A Treasury of Sea Stories (Collaboratore) 17 copie
World's Great Tales of the Sea (Collaboratore) 15 copie
Four great American novels (Collaboratore) 15 copie
Billy Budd [1962 film] (Original book) 15 copie, 1 recensione
Moby Dick [2011 TV mini series] (Original book) 14 copie
We, Robots (Collaboratore) 13 copie
Melville (Collaboratore) 12 copie
Come Not, Lucifer! A Romantic Anthology (Collaboratore) 6 copie, 1 recensione
Pola X 6 copie
The Wide Sea (Collaboratore) 5 copie
Representative American Short Stories (Collaboratore) 5 copie, 1 recensione
Vijf Amerikaanse novellen (Collaboratore) 5 copie
Valas (Alkuteoksen kirjoittaja) 4 copie
Famous Stories of Five Centuries (Collaboratore) 3 copie
Tyve mesterfortællinger (Autore, alcune edizioni) 3 copie, 1 recensione
Twelve short novels (Collaboratore) 3 copie
Historier fra de syv have (Autore, alcune edizioni) 2 copie, 1 recensione
Famous American Stories (Collaboratore, alcune edizioni) 1 copia, 1 recensione
Introduction to Fiction (Collaboratore) 1 copia
Enjoying Stories (Collaboratore) 1 copia
Stories of the South Seas (Collaboratore) 1 copia
The Undying Past (Collaboratore) 1 copia

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Herman Melville, American author, was born in New York City on the 1st of August 1819. He shipped as a cabin-boy at the age of eighteen, thus being enabled to make his first visit to England, and at twenty-two sailed for a long whaling cruise in the Pacific. After a year and a half he deserted his ship at the Marquesas Islands, on account of the cruelty of the captain; was captured by cannibals on the island of Nukahiva, and detained, without hardship, four months; was rescued by the crew of an Australian vessel, which he joined, and two years later reached New York. Thereafter, with the exception of a passenger voyage around the world in 1860, Melville remained in the United States, devoting himself to literature -- though for a considerable period (1866-1885) he held a post in the New York custom-house -- and being perhaps Hawthorne's most intimate friend among the literary men of America. His writings were numerous, but judged of varying merit by his contemporaries; his verse, patriotic and other was forgotten; and his works of fiction and of travel were deemed of irregular execution. Nevertheless, few authors have been enabled so freely to introduce romantic personal experiences into their books. He portrayed seafaring life and character with vigour and originality, and from a personal knowledge equal to that of Cooper, Marryat or Clark Russell. But these records of adventure were followed by other tales that his contemporaries found so turgid, eccentric, opinionative, and loosely written as to seem the work of another author. He died a failed author in New York on the 28th of September 1891. The 20th century's collective reassessment of his work is much more favorable, and he is now classed among the greatest American writers.
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