An excerpt from Herman Melville’s 1851 novel about whaling, Moby Dick.

Herman Melville, who worked aboard a whaleship out of New Bedford for four years, drew on his own experiences at sea when he wrote the great whaling novel Moby Dick. This excerpt includes the famous first paragraph of the novel and a portion of a confrontation between Captain Ahab and the great white whale, Moby Dick, which Ahab has been pursuing for years aboard the whaleship Pequod.