Study Guide

Typee Chapter 12

By Herman Melville

Chapter 12

  • Kory-Kory brings Tommo and Toby a meal, and then he convinces Tommo to sleep.
  • In the morning, Tommo wakes to find Kory-Kory on one side of him and Toby on the other. All feel refreshed, and Kory-Kory leads the two men to the stream so that they may bathe.
  • Afterward, Mehevi visits once again, inviting Tommo and Toby to walk with him (with Kory-Kory's help), through the village and to Hoolah Hoolah—a sacred ground where no females may pass.
  • Tommo takes time to describe the grounds, with structures and verandas laid with mats, and four or five ancient tribesmen with tattoos so thick their skin is entirely one inky color. Inside a house, the Ti, they smoke a pipe with Mehevi and nap.
  • Tommo wakes to find that only he and Toby are left, and that it's dark. Outside, however, tribesmen are dancing around a fire. Tommo and Toby worry and joke that this is the night they'll be eaten. The men implore them to eat what Tommo understands to be "baked baby" (12.30) but happily, it is a baby pig. They next morning, they return to Marheyo's hut without having been eaten—good times.