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Terrible weather returns; colder temperatures bring frost. Dana thinks about returning home The Alert sets sail and returns to Monterey; Dana was here eleven months ago with the Pilgrim. Here, he and his mates ride horses and enjoy a meal at the Carmel mission. Some crewmembers get drunk in a grogshop. As a result of the scuffle, George gains respect from the crew, and there is no more quarreling on board A group of Mexicans joins the crew as the Alert heads to Santa Barbara.

After the wedding, the crew enjoys the fandango. Having been in port for three weeks and fearing bad weather, the captain calls the crew back to the Alert. While in San Diego, Dana is deeply saddened to realize that his friends, the Sandwich Islanders, have become the victims of disease brought into the region. He also secures several newspapers and enjoys reading them. The sailors sing songs to motivate themselves. The Pilgrim and California arrive and discharge their hides.

Meanwhile, Dana is told by his captain that he will have to work on the Pilgrim, which means he will have to spend more time at sea before he is able to go home, or find someone else to take his place. Harry May fills the spot on the Pilgrim, and Dana escapes the fate of losing his chance to begin a return voyage to Boston. The Alert sets sail on its homeward voyage, heading toward Cape Horn.

It has a smaller crew, but has a passenger named Professor Nuttall, who Dana knew from his days at Harvard. Struck by the pain of a horrible toothache, Dana suffers en route to the Cape while the crew battles raging storms and icebergs. Just when the crew has had enough, a beam of sunshine appears and serves as an omen for good fortune Staten Land is spotted, a sign that the Alert has passed the Cape and is nearly into the Atlantic Ocean.

The ship endures another tropical storm, and several crewmembers suffer from scurvy Their health is restored, thanks to the crew of the Solon, who provides them with onions and potatoes One hundred thirtyfive days after leaving San Diego, the Alert finally drops its anchor. Surprisingly, Dana says that he is not overjoyed with his return home, but actually feels a sense of apathy. The hide industry has halted, while the quest for gold has replaced it.

Two Years Before the Mast (Everyman's Library)

Houses of worship have become plentiful, offering services for many denominations of Christians. Captain Wilson appears, and Dana enjoys reminiscing with him. The chapter closes as Dana provides updates on the men and ships he knew during his days at sea. Ask students to write brief responses to each of the following statements. Discuss student responses in class, so that readers will be able to appreciate the universal messages presented in Two Years Before the Mast.

Explain the paradox that physical labor can be exhilarating and exhausting. Education can make a difference in the way a person views the world.

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Being outdoors can be rejuvenating to the body and spirit. Nature will always be more powerful than humankind. Activity 2: Much like a drama coach must instruct students of the directions on a stage, so must sailors learn the directions and parts of a ship.

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Practice addressing each other with the appropriate salutations. If time permits, put students into small cooperative groups, and have them create minute skits utilizing the nautical vocabulary.

Two Years Before the Mast a Personal Narrative Of Life At Sea by Dana, Richard Henry

Activity 3: Review the definition of jargon: the technical terminology or characteristic idiom of a special activity or group. Students should be encouraged to continue reading, and not to allow lack of sailing knowledge to deter their attempts to appreciate the novel. Basic terms for easy reference are included here. Most often used to describe men whose living quarters are located here, officers being housed behind the mast and enlisted men before the mast.

All hands: The whole crew. Aloft: Above the deck, in the rigging. Aye: Yes. Bale: To bale a boat is to throw water out of it.


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Ballast: Heavy substances, such as rocks or sand, loaded low in a vessel to improve stability. Bow: The whole forward end of a vessel. Brig: A square-rigged vessel, with two masts. Fid: A block of wood or iron, placed through the hole in the heel of a mast, and resting on the trestle-trees of the mast below. This supports the mast.


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Also, a wooden pin, tapered, used in splicing large ropes, in opening eyes. Furl: To roll or gather up a sail. Heaver: A short wooden bar, tapering at each end. Larboard: On the left, or port side of a ship. Lee side: The side sheltered from the wind. Magellan Clouds: These cosmic clouds are now understood to be dwarf irregular galaxies, satellites of our larger spiral Milky Way Galaxy. Marlingspike: An iron pin, sharpened at one end, and having a hole in the other for a lanyard.

Used both as a fid and a heaver. Mast: A vertical spar for supporting sails and rigging. Port: The left-hand side of a vessel, as one is facing forward. Quarterdeck: The after part of the upper deck of a ship usually reserved for officers. Schooner: A small vessel with two masts and no topsails.

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Ship: A vessel with three masts, with topsails and yards to each. To come aboard a vessel. To fix anything in its place. Spar: A support for sails or rigging: a yard, boom, or gaff. Starboard: The right-hand side of a vessel, as one is facing forward. Steeve: The angle formed by the bowsprit and the horizon or the keel. Stern: The backward end of a vessel.

Stow: To put something away in its proper place. Southern Cross: A constellation in the shape of a cross used to determine the direction of the South. Windlass: Rotating drum device used for hauling line or chain, such as to raise and lower an anchor. Yard: A horizontal spar that holds the sails.

Captain: The chief officer and commander. The captain tells him what is to be done, and he must make it happen. Typically, the first mate is also the disciplinarian. Crew: The collective term referring to a group of people working together on a ship. Second Mate: The next officer in command after the Chief or First Mate, usually in charge of navigation. Watch: Crewmembers who maintain a lookout, even through the night.

Review words with students prior to reading, pronouncing them together so that students know how the words sound when spoken aloud. In an effort to maximize exposure to vocabulary, create a word wall in the classroom.

Using regular typing or construction paper, place each word and its definition on a separate sheet of paper. Word walls can be teacher created, or they can be done by students. They may be placed on bulletin boards or simply placed on available wall or chalkboard space. The following additional activities offer creative approaches to making meaning with words.

Two Years Before The Mast (Art-Type Edition)

For optimum learning, students should be given choices when directing their learning. Students may be asked to include any number of words for each of the following assignments: 1. Create a want ad that might appear in the local classified section of a newspaper. Create an advertisement for a magazine such as Seventeen or Sports Illustrated that uses vocabulary in its text. Using a sheet of construction or typing paper, create a collage of newspaper or magazine images that represent the meaning of the word.

Write the word on the back side of the paper. Look up synonyms for the word. Write or type the synonyms, and cut them out in strips.