From Knights and Squires
“’I will have no man in my boat,’ said Starbuck, ‘who is not afraid of a whale.’ By this, he seemed to mean, not only that the most reliable and useful courage was that which arises from the fair estimation of the encountered peril, but that an utterly fearless man is a far more dangerous comrade than a coward.”
Musing: This chapter is our first introduction to Starbuck! I usually hate Starbuck – the coward. But I like this introduction to him. Mostly because it makes sense. It makes sense to me to be courageous when you understand your foe. It also makes sense to me to fear the person who fears nothing. It means they have not taken a good look at the situation ahead. I’m always slightly suspicious of people, for example, who do not fear death. Make what you will of me and Starbuck both.