The Palm-Tree Shall Grow
The Lucy Ann sailed from Sydney on February 1842 for whales in the Pacific Ocean, and lost eight of its crew and its second mate on the island of Tahuata in the Marquesas, where they deserted in June. The Lucy Ann signed on two new sailors at Nukuhiva on August 8th and, on the following day, another, Herman Melville, escaping from the Taipi. The pattern more obviously present in Typee, of escape and captivity, can also be discerned beneath the surface of its sequel, Omoo: A Narrative of Adventures in the South Seas (1847), an apparently unpatterned, wandering narrative with a title Melville glossed in his Preface. Omoo begins where Typee ends, with ‘Melville's’ escape from Nukuhiva in the Julia (in reality the Lucy Ann), and deviates into fiction by describing the Julia's return to the Marquesan island of Tahuata ‘for the purpose of obtaining eight seamen, who, some weeks before, had stepped ashore there from the Julia’, as indeed they had in reality from the Lucy Ann.
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