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Piracy, Turtles and Flying Foxes (Penguin…
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Piracy, Turtles and Flying Foxes (Penguin Great Journeys)

by William Dampier

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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 Dampier's exploits in Sumatra, the Philippines and Australia. He writes of the appearance and ways of the local Indian tribes and Aborigines. He also closely observes the various insects, sea life, especially the various turtles, and bats. Written about 1686, this is the world when it was wild and dangerous. Dampier loses several of his crew over the course of the journal. ( )
  mstrust | May 14, 2015 |
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CLASSIC TRAVEL WRITING. 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. He also left the first description in English of the Aborigines of Australia. 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. 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.… (more)

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