The Tragic History of the Sea: Shipwrecks from Jonah to Titanic

The Tragic History of the Sea: Shipwrecks from Jonah to Titanic

by Anthony Brandt
     
 
Is there any tale more thrilling than a shipwreck? Disaster at sea is an ever-present peril, inspiring ancient legends, great works of fiction, and countless yarns of deadly typhoons, vessels consumed by fire, and desperate castaways alone on an empty ocean. Before Homer composed The Odyssey, sailors were already telling their terrifying stories, and Anthony

Overview

Is there any tale more thrilling than a shipwreck? Disaster at sea is an ever-present peril, inspiring ancient legends, great works of fiction, and countless yarns of deadly typhoons, vessels consumed by fire, and desperate castaways alone on an empty ocean. Before Homer composed The Odyssey, sailors were already telling their terrifying stories, and Anthony Brandt has culled only the very best for this essential and engrossing chronicle of shipwrecks through the ages.

Brandt's selections range from Icelandic sagas to Mark Twain to Titanic and beyond. The Tragic History of the Sea draws from tales around the globe: the doomed Medusa, whose survivors were abandoned to their fate, to live on only in a famous painting in the Louvre; the infamous Essex and her fatal cruise which inspired Melville's Moby Dick; or the harrowing wreck of the Wager, which left kinsman to poet Lord Byron, starving on Patagonia's bleak shores.

A riveting anthology of high adventure and astonishing survival against all odds, this storm-tossed voyage through history's gales and across unforgiving seas represents the best of a storytelling tradition that goes back centuries. Each extraordinary tale is linked to the next by Brandt's expert annotations and commentary, which sets them in context, provides a wealth of maritime and literary background and places this volume of shipwreck tales in a class by itself.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...will rivet anyone else who’s ever been drawn to the mystery, beauty and danger of the ocean." —American Profile

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780792259084
Publisher:
National Geographic Society
Publication date:
08/15/2006
Pages:
352
Product dimensions:
6.34(w) x 9.23(h) x 1.25(d)

Meet the Author

Anthony Brandt is an expert in the history of travel and adventure and is the book review editor for Adventure magazine. He has edited more than 20 books for National Geographic including the The Journals of Lewis and Clark and is a contributor to GQ, Esquire, the New York Times Sunday Magazine and other publications.

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