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Profile of the Day: Herman Melville

Profile of the Day: Herman Melville

Herman Melville

Have you read Moby-Dick? On this day in 1851, Herman Melville’s classic novel was published for the first time in London, England.

Initially published under the title, The Whale, Melville’s signature novel followed the story of a sea captain’s obsessive quest to hunt down the white whale, Moby Dick. Melville drew upon his own experiences working at sea to write the book.

While writing the novel, Melville developed a close friendship with Nathaniel Hawthorne, to whom he dedicated the novel. Although it is now considered to be one of the greatest American novels and Melville’s masterpiece, the book was initially considered a commercial failure and met with lackluster reviews.

By the time of his death on September 28, 1891 at the age of 72, Melville’s popularity had waned. It wasn’t until his work was rediscovered during the 1920s that Melville would receive a new wave of recognition and acclaim. Today he is remembered as one of America’s greatest writers in history.

Explore Herman Melville’s family tree on Geni and share how you’re related to the author.

View Herman Melville’s Geni Profile


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Image: Library of Congress


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