Monday, September 26, 2016

Warm Nashville reception for Mardi

Mr. William Wales, editor of the Nashville Banner
1847 miniature by John Wood Dodge via Tennessee Portrait Project

" 'Omoo' sublimated"
From the Republican Banner and Nashville Whig, April 28, 1849; found in the online Historical Newspapers at Newspapers.com [issue there is mis-labeled The Tennessean]. Edited by William Wales, also "a poet, writer and co-editor of the South Western Monthly, a Nashville magazine published in 1852" (Tennessee Portrait Project).
"MARDI AND A VOYAGE THITHER."— This is the title of the most delightful book of its kind we have ever read. Our readers will not ha surprised at this unqualified endorsement of it, when we tell those who have not seen it, or heard of it, that the author is Herman Melville; the scenes are laid amongst the romantic islands of the Pacific, and that it is "Omoo" sublimated, if we may use the expression. It is a kind of sea-romance—a picture of all its wild wonders and startling vicissitudes, and this told in an original style, and with a vivid power which reminds one of the most thrilling passages of Carlyle.— It is as if the last named author had suddenly discarded his own field of labor and taken to the infinite sea, so quaintly are the marvels of the ocean painted—so surprising and rich are the pictured contrasts thrown together with prodigal extravagance. We counsel all to procure it without delay who wish to revel in the delights furnished by an imagination that never flags—a power of description that never wearies. It is a retreat from the cares of ordinary life—a Robinson Crusoe stroll through a region identified in the minds of every one from early childhood, with all that is most fascinating in the romance of the far-off isles of the ocean. It can be procured at the Bookstore of Mr. W. T. Berry.

Melville's Mardi warmly received in Nashville

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