Herman Melville (August 1, 1819 – September 28, 1891) was an American novelist, short story writer, essayist and poet. He is often classified as part of Dark romanticism. His first three books gained much attention, the first becoming a bestseller, but after a fast-blooming literary success in the late 1840s, his popularity declined precipitously in the mid-1850s and never recovered during his lifetime. When he died in 1891, he was almost completely forgotten (despite a vogue for his early sea novels in Great Britain in the 1880s), but his longest novel, Moby-Dick won recognition in the 20th century as one of the chief literary masterpieces of both American and world literature. His posthumous novella Billy Budd, first published in 1924 and then in a revised and corrected text in 1962 based on a close study of the original manuscripts, rivals Moby-Dick in popularity, and in particular has become a key text of the field of law and literature.
From the Wikipedia entry on Herman Melville. See more.
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