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Word Count: 224
Billy Budd by Herman Melville is a tragic tale of men at sea Billy Budd is a innocent man aboard the Indomitable who is accused of plotting mutiny by Claggart the serpent like master-at-arms of the ship The captain a reasonable man doubts Claggarts story and brings Billy in to confront Claggart Although Captain Vere believes in Billys innocence naval law demands punishment as a result Billy is convicted and sent to be hanged Through out the novel Melville uses allusions to Biblical figures Such as portraying Billy as a divine Christ like figure Clagart to the Serpent in the garden of Eden or the devil and Captain Vere as the Pontius Pilot in Rome Throughout Billy Budd Biblical parallels such as the crucification of Jesus the fall of the Garden of Eden and the sacrifice of Isaac Captain Vere may interestingly be compared to Pontius Pilate the Roman governor of Judea at the time of Jesus Christs crucification It is said that Pilate believed in Jesus innocence but was afraid to save him Like Pilate Vere condemns the innocent man to a disgraceful death but unlike Pilate he does not wash his hand but manfully assumes the full responsibility and in such a way as to take the half if not more than the half of the bitterness of the execution upon himself
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