20,000 Leagues under the Sea | Study Guide

Jules Verne

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20,000 Leagues under the Sea | Chapter Summaries

See Chapter Summaries Chart

Timeline of Events

  • July 1866

    Rumors of a mysterious sea creature in the ocean filter back to Europe and the United States.

    Part 1, Chapter 1
  • July 1867

    Dr. Aronnax and Conseil join Captain Farragut on the Abraham Lincoln.

    Part 1, Chapter 3
  • November 1867

    Believing it has spotted the mysterious sea creature, the Abraham Lincoln launches an attack.

    Part 1, Chapter 6
  • November 1867

    After falling overboard, Dr. Aronnax, Conseil, and Ned Land are pulled into the Nautilus.

    Part 1, Chapter 7
  • Later that month

    Dr. Aronnax, Conseil, Ned Land, and Captain Nemo walk to the underwater forests of Crespo Island.

    Part 1, Chapter 16
  • December 1867

    From the Nautilus salon, Dr. Aronnax and Ned Land see a sunken ship with sailors still aboard.

    Part 1, Chapter 18
  • January 1868

    Papuan natives try to invade the Nautilus but are repelled by the electrical current.

    Part 1, Chapter 22
  • January 18, 1868

    Dr. Aronnax, Conseil, and Ned Land are fed sleeping pills with their lunch.

    Part 1, Chapter 23
  • January 19, 1868

    Dr. Aronnax attends to a gravely injured crew member.

    Part 1, Chapter 24
  • January 20, 1868

    Dr. Aronnax accompanies Captain Nemo to an underwater funeral for the deceased crew member.

    Part 1, Chapter 24
  • Later in January

    Dr. Aronnax, Conseil, and Ned Land accompany Captain Nemo to collect pearls near Sri Lanka.

    Part 2, Chapter 3
  • February 1868

    The Nautilus passes through a secret underwater tunnel connecting the Red Sea to the Mediterranean.

    Part 2, Chapter 5
  • Later in February

    Dr. Aronnax and Captain Nemo take an underwater walk to Atlantis.

    Part 2, Chapter 9
  • March 1868

    Captain Nemo plants his flag on the South Pole.

    Part 2, Chapter 14
  • Later in March

    The occupants of the Nautilus narrowly escape being asphyxiated.

    Part 2, Chapter 16
  • April 1868

    A giant squid pulls one of Captain Nemo's men into the ocean.

    Part 2, Chapter 18
  • June 1868

    The Nautilus sinks the warship that is hunting it.

    Part 2, Chapter 21
  • Later

    Dr. Aronnax, Conseil, and Ned Land try to escape from the Nautilus; it gets caught in a whirlpool.

    Part 2, Chapter 22
  • After the escape

    Dr. Aronnax wakes up next to Conseil and Ned Land in a room in the Lofoten Islands.

    Part 2, Chapter 23

Chapter Summaries Chart

Chapter Summary
Part 1, Chapters 1–3 In 1866 reports have begun filtering back from some American and European sailors about a mysterious and unidentifiabl... Read More
Part 1, Chapters 4–6 Captain Farragut has assembled an impressive crew of sailors and officers. Many of them are enticed by the $2,000 in r... Read More
Part 1, Chapters 7–9 Dr. Aronnax plunges into the water, but he is a strong swimmer so he resurfaces without distress. When he reaches the ... Read More
Part 1, Chapters 10–12 Ned Land releases the steward and comes face-to-face with the submarine captain. In perfect French the captain explain... Read More
Part 1, Chapters 13–15 Captain Nemo takes Dr. Aronnax to the drawing room and fills him in on even more specifics about the submarine's opera... Read More
Part 1, Chapters 16–18 With the help of two crewmen, Conseil, Dr. Aronnax, Captain Nemo, and one of Captain Nemo's assistants get into their ... Read More
Part 1, Chapters 19–21 As the Nautilus travels through more frequented sailing areas in the South Pacific, it comes across more and more ship... Read More
Part 1, Chapters 22–24 Puzzled by the stones, the men turn around and see a large group of natives with bows and slings gathered at the edge ... Read More
Part 2, Chapters 1–3 Dr. Aronnax begins this section with a number of observations. First, he reflects on Captain Nemo's utter devotion to ... Read More
Part 2, Chapters 4–6 Dr. Aronnax is confused when he realizes the Nautilus has set its course toward the Gulf of Oman, which leads to the P... Read More
Part 2, Chapters 7–9 Much to Ned Land's disappointment, the Nautilus speeds through the Mediterranean too quickly to make escape possible. ... Read More
Part 2, Chapters 10–12 The next day the Nautilus passes through the ruins of Atlantis, captivating Conseil and Dr. Aronnax during the journey... Read More
Part 2, Chapters 13–15 The Nautilus continues south, and by March 16 it has reached the South Shetland Islands in the Antarctic Circle. Dr. A... Read More
Part 2, Chapters 16–18 Clinical as always, Captain Nemo calmly explains the two possible ways of dying in the Nautilus: by being crushed betw... Read More
Part 2, Chapters 19–21 The Nautilus continues its path north. Riding the eastern perimeter of the Gulf Stream, that fast-moving current under... Read More
Part 2, Chapters 22–23 Dr. Aronnax is panic-stricken and unable to sleep as images from the sinking replay in his mind on a loop. The Nautilu... Read More
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