Piracy, Turtles and Flying Foxes

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Penguin UK, Feb 1, 2007 - Travel - 112 pages
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Dampier's (1651-1715) adventures and writing inspired both Robinson Crusoe and Gulliver's Travels, but in his own right he was a remarkable, observant and enjoyable writer - whether on a woefully mishandled pirate raid in Spanish America or on a desperate journey to Sumatra in an open boat or on the habits of manatees or bats. He also left the first description in English of the Aborigines of Australia - thus initiating a painful, now three centuries' long encounter between peoples on opposite sides of the world.

Great Journeys allows readers to travel both around the planet and back through the centuries – but also back into ideas and worlds frightening, ruthless and cruel in different ways from our own. Few reading experiences can begin to match that of engaging with writers who saw astounding things: Great civilisations, walls of ice, violent and implacable jungles, deserts and mountains, multitudes of birds and flowers new to science. Reading these books is to see the world afresh, to rediscover a time when many cultures were quite strange to each other, where legends and stories were treated as facts and in which so much was still to be discovered.

 

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User Review  - mstrust - LibraryThing

Explorer and sometime pirate William Dampier went round the world three times and wrote the first English language travel book. This book is part of the Penguin Great Journeys series and features ... Read full review

Contents

Preface
Introduction
From the South Seas Overland to the Caribbean
Mindanao Island
The Turtle
The Suckingfish
The Manatee
Flying Foxes near Negros Island
New Holland
From Nicobar to Sumatra in an Open Boat
The Painted Prince
Saint Helena Island and Home

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About the author (2007)

William Dampier (1651-1715) was an English buccaneer, sea captain, author and scientific observer. He had a long and unbelievably chaotic career, managing more by accident than design to sail around the world three times and participate in a wilderness of almost uniformly unsuccessful piratical and semi-piratical ventures.

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