Analysis Pages

Facts in Robinson Crusoe

Facts Examples in Robinson Crusoe:

Chapter I - Start In Life

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"Bremen, who settled first at Hull..."   (Chapter I - Start In Life)

Bremen is a city in Germany located on the Weser River. It is a maritime trading port. Crusoe’s family migrated from Germany to England, settling in Kingston upon Hull, a city often abbreviated to Hull. Kingston upon Hull is east of Yorkshire and lies upon the River Hull.

"islands of the Canaries..."   (Chapter II - Slavery And Escape)

Located off the coast of Morocco, the Canary Islands form a small archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean. The Castilians from the Iberian Peninsula were the first Europeans to settle the islands and they eventually formed an autonomous community under Spain. The European settlers displaced an indigenous population called the Guanches. Like other Atlantic island archipelagos of the 17th century, the Canaries were frequented by merchant and pirate vessels.

"the Cape de Verde Islands..."   (Chapter II - Slavery And Escape)

These ten volcanic islands form an archipelago off the western coast of Africa in the central Atlantic Ocean. This archipelago was discovered and settled by Portuguese explorers in the 15th century, having previously been uninhabited. Due to its position off the African coast, it served as a trading post for merchants, pirates, and slave traders.

"the bay of Cadiz..."   (Chapter II - Slavery And Escape)

A bay along the southwestern coast of the Iberian Peninsula, the Bay of Cadiz provides ships with a call to port off the Atlantic Ocean. For Crusoe, this bay represents freedom from Sallee and North Africa.

"the Moors...."   (Chapter II - Slavery And Escape)

The term “Moor” originally referred to someone from ancient Mauretania, a large area in North Africa that corresponds to parts of Morocco and Algeria. The word “Moor” later came to refer to Muslim people of mixed Berber and Arabic descent, a people who conquered Spain in the 8th century.

"Sallee..."   (Chapter II - Slavery And Escape)

The city of Sallee (Salé) became a main port for the Barbary pirates of the 17th century. These corsairs and pirates eventually formed a Republic of Salé. For Crusoe’s ship to port here after being attacked by the Turkish rover indicates that they may still be in peril.

"calenture..."   (Chapter II - Slavery And Escape)

This is a tropical disease of sorts that causes delirium in the patient. The delirium takes on a particular form in which the patient imagines the ocean to be green fields and desires to jump into it.

"COUP DE GRACE..."   (Chapter III - Wrecked On A Desert Island)

This means “the final stroke.” The “grace” stems from the possibly merciful nature of putting someone “out of their misery.”

"as if we were bound for the isle Fernando de Noronha..."   (Chapter III - Wrecked On A Desert Island)

This is a small island further Northeast, 220 miles off the Brazilian Coast.

"pieces of eight..."   (Chapter III - Wrecked On A Desert Island)

“Pieces of eight” refers to Spanish silver coins also known as 8-real.

"when I came to the Brazils..."   (Chapter III - Wrecked On A Desert Island)

The plural here was another way of designating the single country now recognized as Brazil. The name comes from a kind of tree with a red bark often used for dyes.

"I began to see that the land was inhabited..."   (Chapter III - Wrecked On A Desert Island)

Crusoe notes this as if it were surprising, but archaeological records show that Africa has the longest records of human habitation of any continent.

"aloes..."   (Chapter VII - Agricultural Experience)

Aloe is a succulent plant with fleshy bell-shaped leaves or flowers on long stems. It is native to the tropics and has been used to create salves. It can also be used as a tonic drug that helps with purging after a person eats something poisonous.

"cassava root..."   (Chapter VII - Agricultural Experience)

Cavassa is a tropical plant full of nutrition. Native populations used the starchy roots of this plant in baking.

"Poll..."   (Chapter VIII - Surveys His Position)

Crusoe is talking about the parrot that he captures. Resolving to turn it into a pet, he names the bird “Poll”—a conventional pet name for a parrot.

"Trinidad, ..."   (Chapter XV - Friday's Education)

The larger of two South American islands (Trinidad and Tobago,) that lie 6.8 miles off the coast of Venezuela just north of the mouth of the Orinoco river.

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