Israel Potter: His Fifty Years of Exile

Israel Potter: His Fifty Years of Exile

by Herman Melville
     
 

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The authoritative edition of Melville's only historical novel

Based on the life of an actual soldier who claimed to have fought at Bunker Hill, Israel Potter is unique among Herman Melville's books: a novel in the guise of a biography. In telling the story of Israel Potter's fall from Revolutionary War hero to peddler on the streets of London,See more details below

Overview

The authoritative edition of Melville's only historical novel

Based on the life of an actual soldier who claimed to have fought at Bunker Hill, Israel Potter is unique among Herman Melville's books: a novel in the guise of a biography. In telling the story of Israel Potter's fall from Revolutionary War hero to peddler on the streets of London, where he obtained a livelihood by crying "Old Chairs to Mend," Melville alternated between invented scenes and historical episodes, granting cameos to such famous men of the era as Benjamin Franklin (Potter may have been his secret courier) and John Paul Jones, and providing a portrait of the American Revolution as the rollicking adventure and violent series of events that it really was.

This edition of Israel Potter, which reproduces the definitive text, includes selections from Potter's autobiography, Life and Remarkable Adventures of Israel R. Potter, the basis for Melville's novel.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

Published in 1855, Melville's fictional biography is his only historical novel. It tells the story of Israel Potter, a Revolutionary War hero and Bunker Hill survivor who ultimately ends up on the streets of London. Melville mixes fact with fiction and real characters (Ben Franklin) with invented ones.


—Michael Rogers

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781101661987
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
03/25/2008
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
288
File size:
0 MB
Age Range:
18 Years

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