The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket Comprising the details of a mutiny and atrocious butchery on board the American brig Grampus, on her way to the South Seas, in the month of June, 1827.

By Edgar Allan Poe

Page 141

with a view of lending their aid in
the capture and plunder of the Jane. The vessel still lay calmly at
anchor in the bay, those on board being apparently quite unconscious of
any danger awaiting them. How we longed at that moment to be with them!
either to aid in effecting their escape, or to perish with them in
attempting a defence. We saw no chance even of warning them of their
danger without bringing immediate destruction upon our own heads, with
but a remote hope of benefit to them. A pistol fired might suffice to
apprize them that something wrong had occurred; but the report could
not possibly inform them that their only prospect of safety lay in
getting out of the harbour forthwith--it could not tell them that no
principles of honour now bound them to remain, that their companions
were no longer among the living. Upon hearing the discharge they could
not be more thoroughly prepared to meet the foe, who were now getting
ready to attack, than they already were, and always had been. No good,
therefore, and infinite harm, would result from our firing, and, after
mature deliberation, we forbore.

Our next thought was to attempt a rush towards the vessel, to seize one
of the four canoes which lay at the head of the bay, and endeavour to
force a passage on board. But the utter impossibility of succeeding in
this desperate task soon became evident. The country, as I said before,
was literally swarming with the natives, skulking among the bushes and
recesses of the hills, so as not to be observed from the schooner. In
our immediate vicinity especially, and blockading the sole path by
which we could hope to attain the shore in the proper point, were
stationed the whole party of the black skin warriors, with Too-wit at
their head, and apparently only waiting for some re-enforcement to
commence his onset upon the Jane. The canoes, too, which lay at the
head of the bay were manned with savages, unarmed, it is true, but who
undoubtedly had arms within reach. We were forced, therefore, however
unwillingly, to remain in our place of concealment, mere spectators of
the conflict which presently ensued.

In about half an hour we saw some sixty or seventy rafts, or flatboats,
with outriggers, filled with savages, and coming round the southern
bight of the harbour. They appeared to have no arms except short clubs,
and stones which lay in the bottom of the rafts. Immediately afterward
another detachment, still larger, approached in an opposite direction,
and with similar weapons. The four canoes,

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Barnard's, and both.
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It might have been half an hour from the time of our getting in bed, and I was just about falling into a doze, when he suddenly started up, and swore with a terrible oath that he would not go to sleep for any Arthur Pym in Christendom, when there was so glorious a breeze from the southwest.
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While occupied with this thought, however, I fell, in spite of every exertion to the contrary, into a state of profound sleep, or rather stupor.
Page 31
Those only who have been suddenly redeemed from the jaws of the tomb, or who have known the insufferable torments of thirst under circumstances as aggravated as those which encompassed me in my dreary prison, can form any idea of the unutterable transports which that one long draught of the richest of all physical luxuries afforded.
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A hold filled entirely with grain upon leaving port will be found not more than three fourths full upon leaching its destination--this, too, although the freight, when measured bushel by bushel by the consignee, will overrun by a vast deal (on account of the swelling of the grain) the quantity consigned.
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The sail was drawn from beneath the bows.
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Something, however, was to be done, and that with as little delay as practicable, for there could be no doubt that a suspicion having been once entertained against Peters, he would be sacrificed upon the earliest occasion, and one would certainly be either found or made upon the breaking of the gale.
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Peters had expressed to us his opinion that this man had been poisoned by the mate, and for this belief he had reasons, so he said, which were incontrovertible, but which he could not be prevailed upon to explain to us--this wayward refusal being only in keeping with other points of his singular character.
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The cook got up from his mattress to go for us, when a tremendous lurch, which I thought would carry away the masts, threw him headlong against one of the larboard stateroom doors, bursting it open, and creating a good deal of other confusion.
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numbness presently began to die away, so that I could move first one of my legs, and then the other; and, shortly afterward, I regained the partial use of my right arm.
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In spite of all I could say or do to the contrary, he persisted in saying that the ship was rapidly nearing us, and in making preparations to go on board of her.
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I now thought it possible that, by getting at this axe, we might cut through the deck over the storeroom, and thus readily supply ourselves with provisions.
Page 107
We afterward passed Prince Edward's Island, leaving it also on our left; then, steering more to the northward, made, in fifteen days, the islands of Tristan d'Acunha, in latitude 37° 8' S.
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This great success, however, came too late for the salvation of our devoted people.
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A stab with a Bowie knife, however, at length brought it to the ground, and we dragged it into the ravine, congratulating ourselves that, at all events, we had thus obtained a supply of food enough to last us for a week.
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] After satisfying ourselves that these singular caverns afforded us no means of escape from our prison, we made our way back, dejected and dispirited, to the summit of the hill.
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No time was now to be lost.
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And now, indeed, it would seem reasonable that we should experience some alarm at the turn events were taking--but we felt none.
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Nu-Nu breathed, and no more.
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The loss of the two or three final chapters (for there were but two or three) is the more deeply to be regretted, as, it cannot be doubted, they contained matter relative to the Pole itself, or at least to regions in its very near proximity; and as, too, the statements of the author in relation to these regions may shortly be verified or contradicted by means of the governmental expedition now preparing for the Southern Ocean.