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In Gulliver's Travels, how does Gulliver eventually leave the first islands of Lilliput...

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kalliem20 | Student, Undergraduate

Posted June 26, 2012 at 4:35 PM via web

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In Gulliver's Travels, how does Gulliver eventually leave the first islands of Lilliput and Blefuscu?

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belarafon | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted June 26, 2012 at 6:34 PM (Answer #1)

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Gulliver is first marooned on the island of Lilliput, where the people are no more than six inches tall. Gulliver assists Lilliput in defeating the army of a neighboring island, Blefuscu, but refuses to help Lilliput subjugate Blefuscu. He is sentenced to be blinded for treason, but escapes to Blefuscu, where the rulers want him to act as their weapon against Lilliput. However, Gulliver finds the wreck of a boat sized for him, and deals with Blefuscu to be allowed his freedom.

I humbly begged to be excused. I told him, "that since fortune, whether good or evil, had thrown a vessel in my way, I was resolved to venture myself on the ocean, rather than be an occasion of difference between two such mighty monarchs." Neither did I find the emperor at all displeased; and I discovered, by a certain accident, that he was very glad of my resolution, and so were most of his ministers.
(Swift, Gulliver's Travels, eNotes eText)

After a month of hard work to create sails and other necessities, Gulliver takes to the sea with supplies -- an enormous amount by Blefuscu standards, since Gulliver is so large -- and is eventually rescued by a British vessel, and returns home to his wife and children. However, his desire for travel is too strong to keep him home, and he sets out again. Gulliver's actions on Lilliput show the inherently ungrateful nature of government, as he singlehandedly defeats their enemy and is then excoriated for his troubles; his relationship with Blefuscu is not overly strained by his actions, but they are happy to help him leave, as this means that he can no longer interfere with their private wars.

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