It was a noble gathering of the fairest and the swiftest, each bearing at the bow the carved emblem of her name, as in a gallery of plaster-casts, figures of women with mural crowns, women with flowing robes, with gold fillets on their hair or blue scarves round their waists, stretching out rounded arms as if to point the way; heads of men helmeted or bare; full lengths of warriors, of kings, of statesmen, of lords and princesses, all white from top to toe; with here and there a dusky turbaned figure, bedizened in many colours, of some Eastern sultan or hero, all inclined forward under the slant of mighty bowsprits
as if eager to begin another run of 11,000 miles in their leaning attitudes.
But as soon as the conversation ceased, the grinning, ugly creatures arose in a flock and flew swiftly toward the strangers, their long arms stretched out before them like the bowsprits
of a fleet of sail-boats.
Fine's a yacht forward, with yacht sterns to 'em, an' spike bowsprits
, an' a haouse that u'd take our hold.
During all this time the ship lay rolling in the trough of the sea, the heavy surges breaking over her, and the spars heaving and banging to and fro, bruising the half-drowned sailors that clung to the bowsprit
and the stumps of the masts.
Then the bowsprit
got mixed with the rudder sometimes: A thing, as the Bellman remarked, That frequently happens in tropical climes, When a vessel is, so to speak, "snarked."
With your leave, I mean to post myself under the bowsprit
, and, if we get within harpooning distance, I shall throw my harpoon."
The three men at her mast-head wore long streamers of narrow red bunting at their hats; from the stern, a whale-boat was suspended, bottom down; and hanging captive from the bowsprit
was seen the long lower jaw of the last whale they had slain.
He came down out of the tangle of ropes under the stays of the smashed bowsprit
, some small rope caught his heel as he let go, and he hung for a moment head downward, and then fell and struck a block or spar floating in the water.
And where but from Nantucket, too, did that first adventurous little sloop put forth, partly laden with imported cobble-stones --so goes the story --to throw at the whales, in order to discover when they were nigh enough to risk a harpoon from the bowsprit
? Now having a night, a day, and still another night following before me in New Bedford, ere I could embark for my destined port, it became a matter of concernment where I was to eat and sleep meanwhile.
In the morning, Thomas Mugridge being duly bribed, the galley is pleasantly areek with the odour of their frying; while dolphin meat is served fore and aft on such occasions as Johnson catches the blazing beauties from the bowsprit
The HISPANIOLA rolled steadily, dipping her bowsprit
now and then with a whiff of spray.
One could not promenade without risking his neck; at one moment the bowsprit
was taking a deadly aim at the sun in midheaven, and at the next it was trying to harpoon a shark in the bottom of the ocean.