Among many other fine qualities, my royal friend Tranquo, being gifted with a devout love for all matters of barbaric vertu, had brought together in Pupella whatever rare things the more ingenious of his people could invent; chiefly carved woods of wonderful devices, chiselled shells, inlaid spears, costly paddles & aromatic canoes. All these distributed among whatever natural wonders, the wonder-freighted, tribute-rendering waves had cast with a gorgeous carpet.
The industrious earth beneath was as a weaver’s loom, with a gorgeous carpet on it, whereof the ground-vine tendrils formed the warp and woof, and the living flowers the figures. All the trees, with all their laden branches; all the shrubs, and ferns, and grasses. The message carrying air all these unceasingly were active.
Through the lacings of the leaves, the great sun seemed a flying shuttle weaving the unwearied verdure. the freshet-rushing carpet for ever slides away. The weaver-god, he weaves and by that weaving is he deafened, that he hears no mortal voice; and by that humming, who look on the loom are deafened. And only when we escape it shall we hear the thousand voices that speak through it.
Does not this whole head seem to speak of an enormous practical resolution in facing death. This Right Whale I take to have been a Stoic the Sperm Whale, a Platonian who might have taken up Spinoza in his latter years.
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