The narrator who introduces himself as Ishmael, starts as sailor on a whaling ship (= baleniera) to cure his depression. Together with Queequeg, a harpooneer from
totally tattooed (= completamente tatuato), he goes on board of the Pequod, which is just about (= sta per partire) to sail on a three-year expedition (= spedizione che durerà tre anni) to hunt (= per cacciare) sperm whales (= capodogli). South Sea Island,
The commander is Captain Ahab, a solitary man. Ahab misses one leg(= non ha una gamba): Moby Dick, the famous White Whale, took off his leg (= gliela tagliata). Ahab asks his crew to swear (= giurare) that they will help him hunt Moby Dick to take revenge (= vendicare) for his injury (= ferita). The sailors all agree (=sono tutti d’accordo)
Then life on boards starts as usual: mariners work, hunt sperm whales, butcher them (= le ammazzano), and take the sperm oil (= prendono il loro olio). They meet other ships which tell them the latest news about the White Whale.
A year passes, the ship travels across the Atlantic, around Africa, through the Indian Ocean, the Sea of Japan and it reaches (= raggiunge) the Equator in the Pacific Ocean where Moby Dick is.
Finally, Ahab sights (= vede) the White Whale, and the chase (= caccia) starts. For three days, Ahab pursues Moby Dick, but every whaling boat he sends to capture him sinks (= affonda). At the end of the third day, the White Whale attacks the ship itself, and the Pequod goes down.
While his ship is sinking, Ahab, succeed in (= riesce) throwing (= tirare) his harpoon at Moby Dick one last time, but he misses: the rope (= corda dell’arpione) of the harpoon ties (= lega) Ahab to the whale and the two sink into the ocean. The only survivor is Ishmael, who lives to tell the tale: he grasps (= afferra) the coffin (= bara) of his mate, the harpooneer Queequeg, who thinks he is dying of a fever.