"Now, I am my own soul's emperor; and my first act is abdication! Hail! realm of shades!" -- and turning my prow into the racing tide, which seized me like a hand omnipotent, I darted through.
Churned in foam, the outer ocean lashed the clouds; and straight in my white wake, headlong dashed a shallop, three fixed specters leaning o'er its prow: three arrows poising. And thus, pursuers and pursued flew on, over an endless sea.."
FIRST AMERICAN EDITION of Melville's third book, containing the first glimpses of the rich symbolism and allegorical style that would later be more fully developed in Moby Dick.
New York: Harper & Brothers, 1849. Octavo, original brown blind-stamped cloth. Two volumes. Provenance: with bookplates of Albert Henry Wiggin, the noted book collector and famous Boston and New York banker who was considered for Time's Man of the Year for 1930 for his work during the Depression; also with attractive bookplates of Sydney Ansell Gimson and Fowler Booksellers. Very light wear at spine ends, usual scattered occasional foxing, pastedowns toned and foxed. Cloth very clean and gilt exceptionally bright: a beautiful copy.
Price: $3,800 .