The Adventures of Captain Hatterasby Jules Verne
Pub. Date: 08/01/2005
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
First Mate Shandon receives a mysterious letter asking him to construct a reinforced steamship in Liverpool. As he heads out for Melville Bay and the Arctic labyrinth, a crewman reveals himself to be John Hatteras, and his lifelong obsession, the Pole. Despite experiencing appalling cold and hunger, the captain treks across the frozen wastes in search of fuel. Abandoned by his crew, Hatteras remains without resources at the coldest spot on earth. How can he find food and explore the Polar Sea? And what will he find at the top of the world?
This new translation by the father of Verne Studies brilliantly conveys the hypnotic mood and gripping authenticity of Verne's second novel. This edition also includes the original, censored ending, previously unpublished chapters, and evidence of Verne's plagiarism.
Table of Contents
|List of Abbreviations||viii|
|Note on the Text and Translation||xxvi|
|A Chronology of Jules Verne||xxxix|
|Map of the Circumpolar Regions||xliv|
|I||The British at the North Pole||5|
|II||The Desert of Ice||181|
|Appendix A||The Deleted Duel Episode and the Original Ending||350|
|Appendix B||A Chronology of Arctic Expeditions||355|
|Appendix C||Publisher's Announcements||358|
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For those of us of a certain age, not that we lived in the 19th Century, the name Jules Verne always conjures unforgettable images of people, places and things that remain indelibly etched in the mind long, long after we¿ve turned the last page. Jules Verne is an endless adventure we end one, then start another and another, until we realize that we¿ve virtually traveled to almost every place on this planet and the heavenly bodies that surround it. The fifth of his magnificent Extraordinary Voyages, The Adventures of Captain Hatteras is a breathtaking novel set in the frigid regions of the Arctic Circle and the North Pole itself, though we know now that finding an active volcano there strains credulity. It was widely believed at the time that there was an opening at the top of the world which led to the very depths of the earth. A concept that inspired Verne¿s Journey to the Center of the Earth. And Captain Hatteras is Jules Verne at his prime, at his most imaginative stage, at his thrilling best. Its plot is simple yet intriguing: In Liverpool, a seaman named Richard Shandon, First Mate, receives an anonymous letter asking him to construct a reinforced ship and assemble a reliable crew for a rough voyage to the Northern regions of North America, and everyone, Hatteras promises, will be richly rewarded. Once up in the Arctic labyrinth one of the crewman reveals himself as Captain John Hatteras, and his mission is to be the first man to reach the North Pole. So off they go into one of the most horrendous adventures imaginable, even by today¿s standards. These are just a few of the images alluded to above: sailing and trekking through sub-zero temperatures amid gigantic icebergs cutting wind mutiny near starvation bold huskies sudden storms castaways wintering in an ice house a floating iceberg packed with ravenous polar bears about to leap down onto the ship and devour the bold explorers, and a breathless ending to satisfy the fastidious reader. This Oxford University Press edition is a new translation with an introduction and notes by the Jules Verne scholar William Butcher, giving this particular Verne work all the attention and justice it merits.