Short summary - Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas - Vingt Mille Lieues sous les mers: Tour du monde sous-marin
Jules Gabriel Verne
For thetime this "long, phosphorescent, spindle-shaped object" of enormous size was seen by sailors in 1866. He moved incredibly fast and spewed powerful jets of water into the air. Scientists considered the subject a huge sea monster, and journalists and cartoonists turned it into a popular joke.
In 1867, a steamer came across the "monster", and a little later it itself attacked a mail ship, making a triangular hole in the bottom of the ship sheathed with sheet metal. It became dangerous to sail the seas. When the largest countries in the world announced that they had not created an underwater vehicle, scientists were finally convinced that the subject was a huge cetacean. Professor of the Paris Museum, naturalist Pierre Aronax suggested that this is an unusually large narwhal that rose from the ocean abyss and attacked the ship with its sharp horn.
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monster should have been destroyed. For this, the high-speed frigate Abraham Lincoln was equipped. Together with forty-year-old Aronax and his faithful, phlegmatic servant Consel, thirty years old, the best Canadian whaler Ned Land, a tall, strong man with a strong-willed and explosive character, got on the expedition. The vessel under the command of Captain Faragut, equipped with the latest technology, headed to the Pacific Ocean, where the "narwhal" was last seen.
On the way, the professor and the whaler became friends. The stubborn Ned, the only one of the whole team, did not believe in the existence of the "giant narwhal", considering all the stories about him to be newspaper "ducks". The captain promised $ 2,000 to the one who first noticed the monster. Dozens of eyes watched the ocean, but the narwhal still did not appear. Three months later, the frigate's crew lost their last hope. At noon on November 5, the captain turned "towards the European seas," and late in the evening, the keen-sighted Ned Land saw the "narwhal." The captain tried to catch up with the monster all day on November 6, but he escaped, driving Faragut and Ned into a rage. The iron cannonballs of the special cannon bounced off the skin of the narwhal. Towards evening, the frigate managed to get closer. Ned threw his harpoon, bouncing off the monster's back with a metallic clang. The Narwhal unleashed powerful jets of water onto the deck that washed Aronax into the ocean.
Having come to his senses, the professor found near the faithful Conseil, who jumped after his master. There was no need to count on salvation - the frigate's propeller was broken, and the ship could not return. After holding out on the water for several hours and exhausted, Aronax and Conseil heard someone's voice and swam towards the sound. Soon the professor came across some kind of solid body and lost consciousness. He woke up on the back of a "narwhal" in the company of a servant and Ned Land. The whaler was thrown into the water on impact, but he quickly climbed onto the back of the monster, which turned out to be iron.
Suddenly the ship started to move. Some time later, his speed increased so much that his friends could hardly stay on the surface. Feeling that the ship was sinking, the friends began to knock on the metal sheathing. From the hatch came "eight hefty fellows with closed faces" and led them inside the submarine.
The prisoners were locked in a room covered with sheet metal. After a while, a tall, handsome man with a proud bearing and a firm, calm gaze entered them. He pretended not to understand any European language and soon left the room. The friends spent several days in their dungeon. All this time, the submarine was in motion, and Ned Land was angry and made plans to escape.
Their imprisonment was broken by the same handsome man. He spoke to the professor in French and introduced himself as Captain Nemo (Latin for Nobody). The captain intended to give his captives complete freedom within the ship, if they promise not to interfere in his affairs. Aronax realized that "there is a terrible secret hidden in this man's past." He broke all ties with the land. His captives were also doomed to this.
Nemo's ship, the Nautilus, was built according to the captain's plans. Parts of the Nautilus, manufactured in different countries, were put together at Captain Nemo's own shipyard. The boat was moving due to the electrical energy obtained from the huge sodium batteries. The crew of the ship received everything necessary for life from the ocean. Even the clothing fabric was made from seaweed. The Nautilus climbed to the surface only to determine its location, renew the air supply and hunt in a special waterproof boat, which was stored under the outer ledge on the ship's hull. Having received a promise from friends, Nemo showed Aronax all the wonders of the Nautilus, including a spacious library and a salon-museum with the wonders of the deep sea. The captain took the professor to a cabin next to his and offered to participate in his scientific research. The captives did not communicate with the crew of the ship - the sailors spoke some kind of artificial language and were completely devoted to the captain. Nemo considered the Nautilus team to be his family.
Nemo was about to make a round-the-world trip to the oceans of the Earth. Having determined his position for the last time, he plunged the ship to 50 meters and sluggish course to the east-northeast along the Kuro-Sivo (Black River). On that day, November 8, friends first saw the wonders of the depths through the thick crystal windows of the Nautilus, which were closed with iron shutters and opened for several hours a day. On November 10, Aronax began keeping a diary on algae paper.
Five days later, the professor and his companions received a written invitation from Nemo to hunt in the forests of the island of Crespo. Ned Land immediately thought of running away, but to his disappointment, the hunt turned out to be underwater. The harpooner did not dare to put on a rubber suit with a copper helmet, equipped with a compressed air cylinder and a lighting device. Together with Nemo and the silent members of his team, Aronax set off on the hunt with the faithful Conseil, not lagging behind the owner a step. The scientist was amazed by this underwater walk through the algae forest. Nemo demonstrated miracles of accuracy by killing an albatross floating above the water with an air gun. The friends returned to the Nautilus, shooting a sea otter and narrowly escaping sharks.
In the following weeks, the professor met with Nemo very rarely. Every morning "Nautilus" surfaced to determine the coordinates, and during the day the captain opened the shutters on the windows. On November 26, the submarine crossed the Tropic of Cancer, passed the Sandwich Islands and headed further southeast past Hawaii and the Marquesas Islands. All these archipelagos Aronax saw only from afar. After passing the Tropic of Capricorn, the Nautilus turned west-northwest and passed the island of Tahiti. By this time, the ship had covered 8100 miles.
On January 4, the Nautilus approached the Torres Strait, separating Australia from New Guinea. Many ships perished in this dangerous strait, but Nemo decided to go through it and ran aground near the island of Gweboroara. Calling this incident "an accidental hindrance", the captain calmly waited for the full moon on January 9, during which a strong tide would begin and remove the submarine from the shallows. Aronax doubted the tide would help, Ned was confident that the Nautilus would no longer have to sail the oceans.
Taking advantage of the forced parking, the friends asked for leave to the shore, where they stocked up on fresh meat, which Ned missed so much. Their hunt, which lasted for several days, was interrupted by a crowd of bloodthirsty natives. Friends were forced to hide from them on the Nautilus. Fighting fear, the Papuans attacked the submarine. Despite the calmness of Nemo, friends gathered to fight with the cannibals, but at that time the tide began, and the Nautilus rose from its coral bed. "The ship headed for the Indian Ocean.
Nemo was constantly engaged in scientific research. Talking about the study of the density of sea water, the captain mentioned the Mediterranean Sea. Aronax concluded that Nemo also happens in densely populated places. On January 18, the Nautilus did not submerge for a long time - Nemo seemed to be waiting for someone in the middle of the desert ocean. In a telescope, Aronax noticed a ship on the horizon, but then the captain knocked the pipe out of his hands and demanded to fulfill his promise. Friends had to obey. So that they did not see anything superfluous, sleeping pills were added to their food.
Waking up, the professor met with Nemo, and he asked him to provide medical assistance to the wounded from the Nautilus team "The sailor's skull was broken, and Aronax could not help him. The unfortunate man was buried at the bottom of the ocean, where Captain Nemo set up a small cemetery. for your loved ones.
After this strange incident, Aronax was lost in conjecture: who was the mysterious Captain Nemo - a scientist, an unrecognized genius, or an avenger. Friends were still prisoners of the Nautilus, but the freedom-loving Ned Land did not lose hope of breaking out of the underwater dungeon. Aronax, on the other hand, wanted to complete his trip around the world and finish his new scientific work. Conseil also got a lot of pleasure doing his favorite thing - the classification of the inhabitants of the underwater world.
On January 26, the Nautilus crossed the equator, and on January 28, it approached the island of Ceylon. Here Nemo arranged a walk for his friends along the pearl shallows of the Gulf of Manara. There were many sharks in this bay, so the professor accepted the captain's invitation without enthusiasm, but did not dare to refuse, thereby acknowledging his cowardice. To his surprise, neither Ned nor Conseil were intimidated by the news of the sharks. This time the friends were not given a gun - Nemo armed them only with daggers. First of all, the captain took his companions to an underwater grotto and showed a huge shell, in which a pearl the size of a coconut was ripening. Nemo grew this jewel for his museum.
Coming out of the grotto, the companions saw a shark attacking a Hindu, a pearl diver. Nemo rushed at her with a knife. A struggle ensued. The wounded shark crushed the captain with its carcass and opened its mouth full of terrible teeth. At that moment, Ned Land killed the spearfish, which he had prudently brought with him, and saved Captain Nemo's life. Bringing the Indian to his senses, the captain gave him the pearls collected during the walk. Aronak noticed that compassion had not died in Nemo yet. In response, the captain declared that he would always be the protector of the oppressed.
On February 7, the ship passed the Gulf of Aden and entered the Red Sea, from which, according to Aronax, there was only one exit. Nemo, however, intended to cross from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean through a passage known only to him, located under the Isthmus of Suez. The captain named it the Arabian Tunnel. Ned Land, skeptical as ever, still hoped to get into the Mediterranean and escape.
Nemo made the passage through the tunnel on the night of February 11. The passage was witnessed by Aronax, who was kindly invited to the captain's cabin, protruding above the hull of the Nautilus and protected by thick crystal glasses. The passage through the tunnel, illuminated by the ship's powerful searchlight, took several minutes. In the morning, seeing Port Said in the distance, Ned again talked about escape, but the professor did not want to part with the "Nautilus" and the opportunity to explore the inaccessible corners of the oceans. Conseil agreed with Aronax, and Ned was left outnumbered. Harpooner believed that Nemo would not let them go of his own free will and took from the professor a promise to flee at the first opportunity. Ned wanted to sneak under the waterproof cover of the boat and float with it when the Nautilus was near the habitable shore.
On February 14, Aronax noticed that the captain was waiting for something. Observing the marine life, the professor noticed a swimmer, who turned out to be an acquaintance of the captain. Seeing him, he took out gold bars from the safe, filled a voluminous chest with them and wrote the address in Greek. Mighty sailors pulled him out of the cabin, and soon a boat sailed away from the Nautilus.
Nemo did not like the Mediterranean, and the Nautilus crossed it in 48 hours. The speed of the ship was so great that Ned had to forget about the escape. On February 18, the submarine entered the Atlantic Ocean. Harpooner decided not to wait for the Nautilus to leave its habitable places, and appointed an escape for the evening. Finding no rest, Aronax entered the captain's cabin, the walls of which were decorated with portraits of freedom fighters. The professor had a thought: did Nemo finance some kind of revolution?
The captain prevented the friends from escaping. He invited Aronax to walk to a submerged Spanish galleon full of gold. The professor realized that the captain had an inexhaustible source of wealth. The next morning, the Nautilus was far from the shores of Europe. On the evening of February 19, Aronax was expected to go on a new underwater trip. For a long time he climbed after Nemo along the rocks, in the crevices of which giant crabs were watching for their prey, through a forest of petrified trees. Behind the rocks was an active volcano, the light of which illuminated the vast, once inhabited plain. It was Atlantis. Aronax's incredible walk continued all night.
On the morning of February 21, the Nautilus entered the underwater grotto of an uninhabited island. Here was his secret harbor. A cave with a small lake, where the ship found itself, was formed inside an extinct volcano. Here Nemo stocked up on coal, indispensable in the production of sodium for electric batteries. While the sailors were loading coal, the friends examined the cave, but they did not find a ground exit from it.
Leaving the island, the Nautilus crossed the Sargasso Sea and turned south. By March 13, the ship had passed 13 thousand leagues. Friends had a chance to sink to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean, and after returning to the surface, watch how a flock of predatory sperm whales attacked a herd of whales. Having stood up for these harmless animals, Nemo with the help of a sharp spire on the nose of the "Nautilus" destroyed almost all predators.
For Ned Land, the journey was a burden. He hoped that when he reached the South Pole, the captain would turn back into the Pacific Ocean and head for the inhabited shores. On March 14, the travelers saw the first accumulation of ice. On March 18, when the Nautilus was finally covered with ice, Nemo informed Aronax that he intended to reach the geographic South Pole by swimming under the ice. The professor enthusiastically took up the idea, and the skeptic Ned shrugged his shoulders and locked himself in his cabin.
Nemo's experience was a success. On March 19, the Nautilus surfaced near a small island separated by a narrow strait from an unknown mainland. The sky was cloudy, then a snowstorm began, and Nemo was able to determine the coordinates on March 21, at the last moment of the polar day. The ship was indeed at the geographic south pole of the Earth. The captain hoisted a black flag with the letter "N" embroidered in gold on the island.
On the way back, the Nautilus got into trouble: a huge iceberg capsized and trapped the ship in an ice trap. The team began to cut through one of the walls of the ice corridor. Ned Land, Aronax and Conseil participated in the rescue efforts alongside Captain Nemo. Meanwhile, the trapped water began to freeze, the walls of the ice tunnel shrinking, threatening to crush the Nautilus. The captain solved this problem by heating the water in the tanks of the submarine and mixing boiling water with the ice water of the trap. Shortly before the end of work on the "Nautilus" the air ran out. In an effort to escape from painful death, Nemo raised the ship and broke the remaining layer of ice with it. Ned and Conseil did their best to prolong the professor's life, but Aronax was already in agony of suffocation when the ship rose to the surface.
On March 31, the Nautilus passed Cape Horn and turned into the Atlantic Ocean. To Ned Land's displeasure, the ship passed Brazil at a very high speed. The chance to escape was lost again. The escape to the shores of French Guiana had to be canceled due to a severe storm. The friends had been prisoners of the Nautilus for six months, having sailed 17 thousand leagues during this time. Aronax noticed that Captain Nemo had changed, became gloomy, unsociable and hid in his cabin for most of the day.
On April 20, the Nautilus team had to repel an attack by giant squids. The horny jaws of one of the monsters got stuck in the propeller of the ship, and the team had to arm themselves with axes to clear the surface of the submarine of cephalopods. During the battle, one of the sailors of the Nautilus was killed. Ned was also in mortal danger, but Nemo saved him, thereby paying off his debt.
For ten days Nemo yearned for his deceased comrade. On May 1, the ship returned to its previous course and sailed north along the Gulf Stream. Ned Land got Aronax to speak to the captain frankly. The professor did not want his scientific work to be buried under water, as Nemo said. In response, the captain showed the scientist a small, non-sinking apparatus, which will contain all the works after Nemo's death. The device will be thrown into the ocean, and someday the professor's notes will get to people. “Whoever entered the Nautilus will not come out of it,” added Nemo. The matter was settled, and the friends decided to flee when the ship passed near Long Island. However, the storm prevented them from realizing the plan again.
The storm threw the ship far from the coast, and Ned Land was completely desperate. Passing along the underwater plateau on which the transatlantic telegraph cable rested, the Nautilus turned south. On June 1, Nemo found the site where the rebel ship "Avenger" from the fleet of the French Republic sank. Honoring the memory of this freedom fighter, the ship Nemo rose to the surface and was fired upon by the cannons of an unknown armored ship. Ned Land tried to signal for help, which caused Nemo's anger. The captain sank the ship, taking revenge on the enemy who robbed him of his "fatherland, wife, children, father and mother," although Aronax tried to prevent him from destroying innocent lives. Then Nemo fell to his knees in front of the portrait of a young woman with two children and sobbed bitterly.
Now "Nautilus" moved mainly under water, and Nemo did not leave his cabin. The ship was left unattended, and Ned decided to flee, seeing some land on the horizon. The fugitives got into the boat, and then the Nautilus landed in the Maelstream - a terrible whirlpool off the coast of Norway. Friends wanted to return, but the boat was torn from the submarine. Aronax hit his head and lost consciousness.
The professor woke up in a fisherman's hut from the Lofoten Islands, next to his friends. Nobody else heard about the Nautilus, but the professor did not forget about the journey of 20 thousand leagues and published his notes.