Great Sea Stories
...It is one of the curiosities of literature, a fact that old Isaac Disraeli might have delighted to linger over, that there have been no collectors of sea-tales; that no man has ever, as in the present instance, dwelt upon the topic with the purpose of gathering some of the best work into a single volume. And yet men have written of the sea since 2500 B.C. when an unknown author set down on papyrus his account of a struggle with a sea-serpent. This account, now in the British Museum, is the first sea-story on record. Our modern sea-stories begin properly with the chronicles of the early navigators-in many of which there is an unconscious art that none of our modern masters of fiction has greatly surpassed. ...
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His face was grown seven years older in the last night . A terrible set calm was on
him . Woe to the man who came across him that day ! “ There are three of them ,
you see , my masters , " said he , as the crew came on deck again . “ A big ship ...
The night mist began to steam and wreath upon the foul beer - colored stream .
The loathy floor of liquid mud lay bare beneath the mangrove forest . Upon the
endless web of interarching roots great purple crabs were crawling up and down
The hoarse night - raven , hid among the roots , startled the voyagers with a
sudden shout , and then all was again silent as a grave . The loathy alligators
lounging in the slime lifted their horny eyelids lazily , and leered upon him as he
As the night closed in , it blew a dreadful gale , and the ship was nearly buried
with the press of canvas which she was obliged to carry : for had we sea - room ,
we should have been lying - to under storm staysails ; but we were forced to carry
The captain , first lieutenant , and most of the officers , remained on deck during
the whole of the night ; and really , what with the howling of the wind , the
violence of the rain , the washing of the water about the decks , the working of the