Caliban's Shore: The Wreck of the Grosvenor and the Strange Fate of Her Survivors

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W. W. Norton & Company, 2004 - History - 297 pages
3 Reviews
What became of the castaways was stranger than fiction...and more than decent Englishmen could bear. In the summer of 1783 the grandees of the East India Company were horrified to learn that one of their finest ships, the 741-ton Grosvenor, had been lost on the wild and unexplored coast of southeast Africa. Astonishingly, most of those on board reached the shore safely91 members of the crew and 34 wealthy, high-born passengers, including women and children. They were hundreds of miles from the nearest European outpostand they were not alone. "They surveyed one another with mutual incomprehension: on the one hand the dishevelled castaways; on the other, black warriors with high conical hairstyles, daubed with red mud...." Drawing upon unpublished material and new research, Stephen Taylor pieces together the strands of this compelling saga, sifting the myths from a reality that is no less gripping. Full of unexpected twists, Caliban's Shore takes the reader to the heart of what is now South Africa, to analyze the misunderstandings that led to tragedy, to tell the story of those who returned, and to unravel the mystery of those who stayed.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - JBD1 - LibraryThing

A thorough and well-researched account of the 1782 wreck of the East Indiaman Grosvenor along the coast of what is now South Africa. Taylor's tracked down some excellent sources, and certainly makes the most of them. Read full review

Caliban's shore: the wreck of the Grosvenor and the strange fate of her survivors

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Raised in South Africa, British and U.S. newspaper correspondent Taylor (Shaka's Children ) acts on his lifelong interest in the famous 1783 wreck of the 741-ton Grosvenor , an East India Company ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

A Man of High Character
3
Lord Macartneys Displeasure
20
Island of Oak
33
A Light in the Dark
53
Nothing but Confusion and Dismay
67
The Caliban Shore
79
Pondos People
94
A Fatal Dread
104
The Vilest Brutish Prostitution
180
African Crusoes
195
The Quest
207
Our Fathers Are Come
219
Gqumas Tribe
230
When the Long Tricks Over
243
Epilogue
253
Acknowledgements
261

Never After Together Again
115
Faultlines
125
Habberleys Mission
135
A Sacred Charge
145
Caliban Transformed
157
The Fate of William Hosea
170
Sources
263
Notes
269
List of Illustrations
285
Index
287
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About the author (2004)

Stephen Taylor is a former journalist and foreign correspondent. He is the author of Storm and Conquest and Caliban’s Shore. He lives in England.

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