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Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne

Book Review: Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne

Jules Verne, the author of "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea", was an astonishingly imaginative science fiction writer in France in the 19th century. 

His astonishment is not only the exaggerated, moving, and scientifically meaningful novels he wrote but also his surprise. 

What's more, the stories written in this book are not surprising in our current era, but in his time, there were no submarines!   

       The protagonist in the book, the explorer and professor Mr. Aronnax, and his two companions embarked on a journey under the sea on the "Nautilus". The owner of the Nautilus is Captain Nemo. He is an eccentric, melancholy, and knowledgeable person. 

Everyone on board communicates in a language that Mr. Aronnax and his two companions cannot understand. Mr. Si felt very strange why only Captain Nemo could understand the language of the three people. 

Captain Nemo invited them to travel around the Pacific Ocean, Indian Ocean, Red Sea, Mediterranean Sea, Atlantic Ocean, Antarctica, and the Arctic. 

I met many underwater animals and plants, underwater caves, dark passages, and ruins that people have not discovered so far.  

        The book contains a lot of scientific knowledge, geography, culture, and geology, so much knowledge, all in this book, the author passed Mr. Aronnas's servant, Consey who has a wide range of knowledge and loves to classify animals Er, tells us the knowledge of the ocean, and the mysteries in the ocean. 

For example, in the Red Sea, a tiny organism called trigonum algae, the mucus secreted by it is the reason why the color of the Red Sea is as red as blood. 

There are still many, many things we don't know, and I know them all through this book. Mr. Aronnax admired Captain Nemo's unparalleled talent and knowledge, and I also admired Captain Nemo's talent and knowledge. 

Mystery and magic, exploring the treasures and wealth of the deep sea, I believe that in the near future, people will be able to build an excellent ship like the Nautilus.    

       "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea" is not fabricated by the author based on imagination, it is a science fiction novel composed of foresight and erudition. 

I admire the author's amazing imagination, rich knowledge, and superb description techniques. 

For example, when writing about crossing Antarctic icebergs, the author vividly describes the ice sea, icebergs, and huge ice crevasses, allowing us to be there as if We are among the icebergs in Antarctica.

Book: Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas is a classic science fiction adventure novel by French writer Jules Verne. The novel was originally serialized from March 1869 through June 1870 in Pierre-Jules Hetzel's fortnightly periodical, the Magasin d'éducation et de récréation. ---Wikipedia

    • Originally published: June 1870
    • Author: Jules Verne
    • Characters: Captain Nemo, Pierre Aronnax, Ned Land, Conseil, Farragut
    • Followed by: Around the Moon
    • Genres: Novel, Science fiction, Adventure fiction, Speculative fiction, Scientific romance
    • Illustrators: Édouard Riou, Alphonse de Neuville


Excerpts from the original text 

I don't know if the author is hungry or the professor is hungry. After arriving in Antarctica, every time he encounters a jumping species, the professor will always add a description of their taste after describing their appearance. . . For example

Among the birds, I also saw the Antarctic White Plover, a wading bird, as big as a pigeon, with a white body, a short and pointed beak, and red eye sockets around the eyes. Conseil caught several plovers and brought them back to the Nautilus. This kind of bird is cooked properly, and the taste is still good. ---Quoting from Fourteen Antarctica

Now it's the hunt for the kill. I know it's a human prerogative. However, I cannot accept this bloody pastime. Indiscriminate killing of gentle Antarctic whales that are as non-aggressive as Arctic whales. Your colleagues, Master Lan, should be condemned for their actions. Thus they have exterminated the fin whale from Baffin Bay and will exterminate this useful animal. So please spare these unfortunate cetaceans.

Those were sperm whales, and those were horrible animals. I sometimes see two or three hundred of them gathered together. Humans should eliminate these vicious and brutal beasts. ---Quoted from page 314

The author may write this way to pave the way for the captain's revenge and hatred, but I really don't like it and think it's hypocritical and hypocritical. The good and evil wheels of animals are judged by humans? Originally, the weak eat the strong, and the weak fin whales also want to eat other living things! 

Book Summary: Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne

Professor Aronnax, his faithful servant, Conseil, and the Canadian harpooner, Ned Land, began an extremely hazardous voyage to rid the seas of a little-known and terrifying sea monster. 

However, the "monster" turns out to be a giant submarine, commanded by Captain Nemo.

1. About the "expedition"

      Aronnax, Conseil, and Ned Land, by chance, came to Nemo's submarine and sailed under the sea with the Nautilus. The hull of the submarine is strong, and it uses the sodium decomposed from a large amount of sodium chloride in the ocean to generate electricity. 

They set out from the Pacific Ocean, passed through coral islands, the Indian Ocean, the Red Sea, entered the Mediterranean Sea, and the Atlantic Ocean, and saw many rare marine animals and plants and strange sights in the water. 

The wonderful and magnificent underwater world is full of exoticism and strong romanticism and is also convinced by the author's scientific knowledge.

       Aronnax and his party encountered countless beautiful scenery and experienced many thrilling adventures during the journey. For example,

      their ship ran aground in Papua New Guinea and was attacked by the local aborigines. The electricity on the ladder prevented the natives from entering the Nautilus;

      they fought sharks in the pearl field of the Indian Ocean, and the whaler Ned Land killed a vicious giant shark;

       they were trapped under thick ice in the Antarctic, the ship was extremely hypoxic, but all the people on the ship took turns using tools and boiling water to smash the 10-meter-thick ice at the bottom, crush the ice with the weight of the submarine, and get out of trouble; In a hand-to-hand fight with an octopus, a crew member died tragically;

       in the North Atlantic, the Nautilus was bombarded by a British destroyer (the nationality of this destroyer was not stated in the original text, and it was only stated in "Mysterious Island" that it was the United Kingdom), all the crew except the three captives were filled with righteous indignation and sank the destroyer with the horn of the Nautilus.

      "Adventure" is different from the emotional experience and spiritual meaning of the characters in the works. For Aronnas, "adventure" is the impulse and harvest of his scientific curiosity in the process of enjoying various animals and plants in the ocean. 

"Expedition" also has more category value of "scientific" knowledge pedigree in Aronnas' expression and introduction. For Conseil, "exploration" provides a fresh and challenging space for the development of the character's easy-going personality of "following the teacher" and the simple and vague "scientific" expression of the specialty of "classification". scenes and journeys. 

For Ned Land, "exploration" presents a certain degree of "paradox". On the one hand, the mystery and vastness of "Sea World" inspired Ned's "whaler" career. Instinct, on the other hand, the "detention" in "exploration" largely conflicts with Ned's nature of advocating freedom. This makes his search for "escape" in "adventure" from beginning to end.

      For Captain Nemo, "expedition" is not only the "escape" and "rejection" of the "human world", but also a realistic choice to support the just struggle of oppressed nations by collecting gold, silver, and treasure under the sea.

2. Regarding "loneliness"

      Aronnax and Conseil, in "Exploration" and "Imprisonment", both draw character "energy" from their own spiritual structure, and they all have certain sustenance, and they do not seem to be "lonely". 

However, the whaling king Ned Land conflicted with the "complexity" of "undersea life" (combining "exploration" and "imprisonment") with his own identity, personality, hobbies, and his "loneliness" It is mostly the nostalgia and yearning for "land life" and "free life".

      However, Captain Nemo's "solitude" has more elements of reference and intervention. 

First, his disappointment and dissatisfaction with the "human world" made him actively choose "loneliness" on the "road". He claimed to have severed ties with all human beings and explored freedom at the bottom of the sea. 

Second, as Aronnas said, Captain Nemo is first of all an individual, and his heart is still grieving and grieving for the suffering of mankind, and he still has a benevolent love for all the races and individuals who are enslaved and persecuted. 

He is not a scientist who cannot withstand the wind and rain in his study and greenhouse, but a national patriot who grew up in the flames of the struggle against colonialism. 

He collected gold and silver treasures under the sea to support the just struggle of the oppressed nations. 

When the motherland was reduced to a colony, he led a small number of like-minded people to dive into the seabed and supported and awakened the oppressed nation's struggle against colonial rule with defiant actions and dissatisfied speeches. 

His "loneliness" is based on the sadness of the motherland of the fall of the homeland and the national standpoint of anti-colonialism. 

Third, the captain's "loneliness" and "revenge" go hand in hand. The captain's "loneliness" is for revenge, and this hatred becomes the "power" of the Nautilus. 

What makes us helpless is that such "revenge" eventually makes Captain Nemo move towards "loneliness" in the true sense. 

The "loneliness" of this "traveler" is possible to be understood and infected precisely under the superposition of the above meanings and the intervention of elements.

3. Regarding "human nature"

       this is euphemistically reflected in Captain Nemo. For example, the "original intention" and "purpose" of his "undersea" travel show a trend of "escaping" from humanity and returning to it. 

For another example, once, I encountered a group of long-scented whales and a group of sperm whales at sea. 

He prevented Rand from capturing the "kind" sperm whale and encouraged Rand to "shoot and kill" the sperm whale. 

Here, the two types of "whales" have different descriptions and metaphors. The captain's different attitudes towards them are obviously based on his "human nature" calling and regulations.

Book Reviews of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea

    "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea" is the second part of Jules Verne's famous trilogy, the first is "Captain Grant's Children" and the third is "The Mysterious Island".

    When I was young, I often couldn’t tell the difference between fairy tales and science fiction. 

    At that time, there were very few readable science fiction novels, and I had basically never seen domestic science fiction books. The first science fiction novel I came across was probably "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea". This is quite an interesting thing. 

I read the novel in 1870 again after more than 100 years, and many plots in it have become reality, which makes people have to admire the greatness of the master.

    It’s just that I was still young at the time, and I was a little confused. For a while, I felt that the plot was not science fiction, and for a while, I was fascinated by the description and yearning for it, so I finished reading this book with various weird thoughts. 

Afterward, when I read "From the Earth to the Moon", this emotion reached its acme. Cannonballs land on the moon? After comparing it with the spaceship, I came to the conclusion that the master also made mistakes, but after I went to middle school, I knew the greatness of the master. 

Many of his ideas were realized one by one, and what is even more impressive is that they were all ahead of schedule. Decades seemed an incredible setting at the time.

    In "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea", Verne imagined the submarine decades ahead of time--the "Nautilus" of Captain Nemo in the novel. So the first submarine of mankind was named "Nautilus", and the first nuclear submarine was also called "Nautilus". It can be seen that people respect him.

    Verne is recognized as a great man in the world, and countless people have added all kinds of glory to him, but even today, he cannot win the Nobel Prize in Literature, because his novels have not played a big role in literature. 

He could not win the Nobel Prize in science because his designs were too advanced and took too much time for people to make them. However, his works have cultivated one Nobel Prize winner after another.

    Such a feat, and I am afraid it will be difficult for anyone to surpass it.

Attached is a brief introduction to Verne’s life:

  Jules Verne (Jules Verne, 1828.2.8 ~ 1905.3.25) was born in Nantes, a seaport in western France, and he lived and studied on Fayd Island on the Laoal River, which constitutes a part of the urban area. to graduate from high school. 

His father was a very successful lawyer, and he wholeheartedly hoped that his son would inherit his father's career. 

But Verne loved the ocean since he was a child, and yearned for expeditions. When he was 11 years old, he volunteered to be a trainee on a ship and sailed to India, but was found by his family who took him home. 

For this reason, Verne was beaten severely, and he promised in tears while lying on the bed: "In the future, I promise to only lie on the bed and travel in fantasy." 

Perhaps it is precisely because of this childhood experience that objectively prompted Verne Galloping to fantasize all his life, he has created so many famous science fictions works.

  At the age of 18, he followed his father's advice and went to Paris to study law, but he had no interest in law but fell in love with literature and drama. 

Once, Verne left early from a party. When he went downstairs, he suddenly lost his childlike innocence. He slid down the handrail of the stairs leisurely, not wanting to bump into a fat gentleman. 

Verne was very embarrassed. After apologizing, he casually asked the other party if he had eaten, and the other party replied that he had just eaten Nantes scrambled eggs. 

After hearing this, Verne shook his head, claiming that there is no authentic Nantes scrambled eggs in Paris because he is from Nantes and he is good at this dish. 

The fat gentleman was overjoyed upon hearing this and sincerely invited Verne to perform at his door. The friendship between the two began from then on, and they once co-wrote plays, which created favorable conditions for Verne to embark on the road of creation. 

The fat gentleman's name is Alexandre Dumas. After graduation, he devoted himself to the creation of poetry and drama, for which he was severely reprimanded by his father and lost his father's financial support. 

He had to struggle in poverty and read books for pleasure. He admired Hugo, Balzac, Dumas, and Shakespeare in England very much. In Paris, he wrote 20 plays (unpublished) and some poems of romantic passion.

Later, Verne and Alexandre Dumas co-created the play "The Broken Straw" and it was staged, which marked Verne's initial success in the literary world. 

In the process of continuing to create, Verne felt that there seemed to be no way out for literary creation, and he found that people in the literary world at that time were all looking for a way out, trying to integrate knowledge from other fields into drama. 

For example, Alexandre Dumas integrated history into literature, while Balzac integrated social ethics into literature... At this time, Verne discovered that only geography remained undeveloped.

  So Verne used a year to conduct experiments, and created works such as "Wintering on the Glacier", but they were not published.

  In 1856, Verne came to the northern city of Amiens by train, met a beautiful widow with two children, fell in love at first sight, proposed to her, and then got married. Then Verne moved there and began to create seriously. He was 29 years old at the time.

  After Verne created "Five Weeks on a Balloon", 16 publishing houses ignored it and threw himself into the fire angrily. He was rescued by his wife and sent to the 17th publishing house to be published. The editor who appreciates this book is called Herzl. 

From then on, Verne met his bosom friend and forged a lifelong friendship with him. Hegel signed a contract with Verne to publish two science fiction novels for him in a year.

  After the publication of "Five Weeks in a Balloon", Verne's creation entered a multi-faceted exploration period. He experimented with various writing methods and explored various directions, and he was out of control. 

Two books are published every year, with the overall title of "Strange Travel", including "Journey to the Center of the Earth", "From the Earth to the Moon", "Rounding the Moon", "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea", "Mysterious Island", etc., covering land, sea, and sky... ... 

After that, the exploration stopped, began to mature, and entered a period of steady development, creating excellent works such as "Around the Earth in 80 Days", "Adventures in the Solar System" and "Two Years Vacation". As his prestige grew, so did Verne's wealth.

  Verne's later years were not very happy, and his creations decreased and entered a period of weakness. His "Carpathian Castle" has a certain autobiographical nature, showing the hidden side of life.

  On March 17, 1905, Verne suffered from hemiplegia, lost consciousness on the 24th, and died at 8:00 am on the 25th.

  On March 28, 1905, the funeral was held, and the whole world sent telegrams to mourn this great science fiction writer.

  Verne's stories are vivid and humorous, full of witty words, and can inspire people, especially teenagers, to love science and yearn for adventure, so they have been welcomed by readers all over the world for more than one hundred years. According to data from UNESCO, Verne is one of the top ten most translated works in the world. 

Verne is a very good writer of popular fiction, with a knack for making his illusions palpable, and full of sensations, conveying a certain human passion from prosaic literature. 

However, the characters in Verne’s novels are all the same except for a few. He seems to be unable to create more important characters. 

The characters are all simple good and bad guys with facial makeup, without any psychological activities; from his works, the characters are single-sex His prejudice against women can also be seen in his appearance, which faintly reveals his mentality of suffering from it. 

In addition, Verne's works are full of obvious social tendencies, a patriot (the French are the best), a national liberationist (supporting the struggle of oppressed nations), and to some extent an anarchist (from Anarchist in some works), and finally a galactic imperialist (desire to create cosmic empires).

  Verne's works are full of knowledge, but he himself is a cosmic mystic and has a mysterious worship of the world. In his novels, sometimes the thinking problems are not deep enough, and the themes are often repeated.

  But overall, Verne's attempt is still great. Although he wrote about ordinary and trivial things, we were still excited after reading them. Just as the Pope said when he received Verne in 1884: "It's not that I don't know the scientific value of your works, but what I cherish most is their purity, moral value, and spiritual power." 

Conclusion: Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne

This is the first science fiction work of Verne that I read. When I first read it, I just forgot about the fierce battle and the graceful seabed and didn’t work hard on the captain. In other words, I only understood the plot at that time But ignore the background and connotation.

   It is no exaggeration to say that this is the book I have reread the most times, even higher than "The Little Prince", which I highly recommend. With the deepening of experience and the shallow understanding of philosophical thoughts, I began to study the will of Captain Nemo.

   It's clear that the captain is out for revenge. This hatred became the "momentum" of the Nautilus. Captain Nemo's undersea voyage should represent the loneliness of the traveler, and loneliness can only be felt and understood by people in the form of travel, but loneliness itself does not come from travel. Finally, the captain's revenge, revenge is killing, this kind of killing brings pain, but there is joy in the pain!

   I am also a donkey, but the loneliness I felt during the initial travel was not as much as "described", which should be because I did not feel lonely in that era at that time, that is to say, I was able to adapt to the times at that time.

   After reading and thinking, I gradually broke away from this "age of fools". In order to implement my will, a kind of contempt for my surroundings and even my friends slowly grew, and finally escalated into "hatred". But I can't "hate" my friend, I can only feel utterly alone. Traveling is the best way to "excuse loneliness".

   Here, Captain Nemo's journey is lonely, but this loneliness brings him joy. On the one hand, this kind of loneliness allows a person to read and think, because thinking is the best weapon to deal with loneliness. 

Thinking about a problem first leads oneself into confusion and then walking out of it, which is a rare enjoyment; On the one hand, this kind of loneliness can irrigate "hatred", so a passion and long-suppressed desire are released during the time revenge, so the will is carried out spiritually, which is the joy of carrying out the will.

There is nothing to summarize, no matter from which aspect, this book is worth reading repeatedly!

Muhiuddin Alam is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of He serves as a consistent contributor to various websites and publications, including Medium, Quora, Reddit, Linkedin, Substack, Vocal, Flipboard, and Amazon KDP. Alam personally read numerous books and, for the past 10 years, has been providing book recommendations and reviews. Find Me: About Me & Google Knowledge Panel.

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