“God keep me from ever completing anything” (Moby-Dick)

by Biblioklept

It was stated at the outset, that this system would not be here, and at once, perfected. You cannot but plainly see that I have kept my word. But I now leave my cetological System standing thus unfinished, even as the great Cathedral of Cologne was left, with the crane still standing upon the top of the uncompleted tower. For small erections may be finished by their first architects; grand ones, true ones, ever leave the copestone to posterity. God keep me from ever completing anything. This whole book is but a draught—nay, but the draught of a draught. Oh, Time, Strength, Cash, and Patience!

From Chapter 32 of Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick.

 

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2 Comments to ““God keep me from ever completing anything” (Moby-Dick)”

  1. Love this. Every time I visit with my elderly uncle, who is slightly senile and a huge Moby Dick fan, he brings up this passage.

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