Full Text Archive logoFull Text Archive — Free Classic E-books

The Life and Most Surprising Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, of by Daniel Defoe

Part 1 out of 6

Adobe PDF icon
Download this document as a .pdf
File size: 0.6 MB
What's this? light bulb idea Many people prefer to read off-line or to print out text and read from the real printed page. Others want to carry documents around with them on their mobile phones and read while they are on the move. We have created .pdf files of all out documents to accommodate all these groups of people. We recommend that you download .pdfs onto your mobile phone when it is connected to a WiFi connection for reading off-line.

Transcriber's Note: Several pages (23, 90, 134, and 224-226) of the
original book were unavailable for scanning. I was
unable to find this exact story in other editions.
Notes have been placed throughout the text to
indicate the location of the missing material.









Including an Account of





Illustrated with eight Engravings, from Original designs.

To which is annexed,



Who lived four years and four months in a state of Solitude,
on the Island of Juan Fernandez, in the Pacific Ocean,



[Illustration: I Was Wrapt Up In Contemplation And Often Lifted
Up My Hands, With The Profoundest Humility, To
The Divine Powers, For Saving My Life, When The
Rest Of My Companions Were All Drowned.
_Dr. and Eng. by A. Carse; Edin_.]


If ever the story of any private man's adventures in the world were
worth making public, and were acceptable when published, the Editor of
this account thinks this will be so.

The wonders of this man's life exceed all that (he thinks) is to be
found extant; the life of one man being scarce capable of a
greater variety.

The story is told with modesty, with seriousness, and with a religious
application of events to the uses to which wise men always apply them,
viz. to the instruction of others by this example, and to justify and
honour the wisdom of Providence in all the variety of our circumstances,
let them happen how they will.

The editor believes this narrative to be a just history of fact; neither
is their any appearance of fiction in it: and though he is well aware
there are many, who on account of the very singular preservations the
author met with, will give it the name of romance; yet in which ever of
these lights it shall be viewed, he imagines, that the improvement of
it, as well as the diversion, as to the instruction of the reader, will
be the same; and as such, he thinks, without farther compliment to the
world, he does them a great service in the publication.





I was born at York, in the year 1632, of a reputable family. My father
was a native of Bremen, who by merchandizing at Hull for some time,
gained a very plentiful fortune. He married my mother at York, who
received her first breath in that country: and as her maiden name was
Robinson, I was called _Robinson Kreutznaer_: which not being easily
pronounced in the English tongue, we are commonly known by the name
of Crusoe.

I was the youngest of three brothers. The eldest was a lieutenant
colonel in Lochart's regiment, but slain by the Spaniards: what became
of the other, I could never learn.

No charge or pains were wanting in my education.--My father designed me
for the law; yet nothing would serve me but I must go to sea, both
against the will of my father, the tears of my mother, and the
entreaties of friends. One morning my father expostulated very warmly
with me: What reason, says he, have you to leave your native country,
where there must be a more certain prospect of content and happiness, to
enter into a wandering condition of uneasiness and uncertainty? He
recommended to me Augur's wish, "Neither to desire poverty nor riches:"
that a middle state of life was the most happy, and that the high
towering thoughts of raising our condition by wandering abroad, were
surrounded with misery and danger, and often ended with confusion and
disappointment. I entreat you, nay, I command you, (says he) to desist
from these intentions. Consider your elder brother, who laid down his
life for his honour, or rather lost it for his disobedience to my will.
If you will go (added he) my prayers shall however be offered for your
preservation; but a time may come, when, desolate, oppressed, or
forsaken, you may wish you had taken your poor despised father's
counsel.--He pronounced these words with such a moving and paternal
eloquence, while floods of tears ran down his aged cheeks, that it
seemed to stem the torrent of my resolutions. But this soon wore, off,
and a little after I informed my mother, that I could not settle to any
business, my resolutions were so strong to see the world; and begged she
would gain my father's consent only to go one voyage; which, if I did
not prove prosperous, I would never attempt a second. But my desire was
as vain as my folly in making. My mother passionately expressed her
dislike of this, proposal, telling me, "That as she saw I was bent upon
my own destruction, contrary to their will and my duty, she would say no
more; but leave me to do whatever I pleased."

I was then, I think, nineteen years old, when one time being Hull; I met
a school-fellow of mine, going along with his father, who was master of
a ship, to London; and acquainted him with my wandering desires; he
assured me of a free passage, and a plentiful share of what was
necessary. Thus, without imploring a blessing, or taking farewell of my
parents, I took shipping on the first of September 1651. We set sail
soon after, and our ship had scarce left the Humber astern, when there
arose so violent a storm, that, being extremely sea-sick, I concluded
the judgment of God deservedly followed me for my disobedience to my
dear parents. It was then I called to mind, the good advice of my
father; how easy and comfortable was a middle state of life; and I
firmly resolved, if it pleased God to set me on dry land once more, I
would return to my parents, implore their forgiveness, and bid a final
adieu to my wandering inclinations.

Such were my thoughts while the storm continued: but these good
resolutions decreased with the danger; more especially when my companion
came to me, clapping me on the shoulder: "What, Bob!" said he, "sure you
was not frightened last night with scarce a capful of wind?"--"And do
you" cried I, "call such a violent storm a capful of wind?"--"A storm,
you fool you," said he, "this is nothing; a good ship and sea-room
always baffles such a foolish squall of wind as that: But you're a fresh
water sailor: Come boy, turn out, see what fine weather we have now, and
a good bowl of punch will drown all your past sorrows." In short, the
punch was made, I was drunk and in one night's time drowned both my
repentance and my good resolutions, forgetting entirely the vows and
promises I made in my distress: and whenever any reflections would
return on me, what by company, and what by drinking, I soon mastered
those fits, as I deridingly called them. But this only made way for
another trial, whereby I could not but see how much I was beholden to
kind Providence.

Upon the sixth day we came to an anchor in Harwich road, where we lay
wind bound with some Newcastle ships; and there being good anchorage,
and our cables found, the seamen forgot their late toil and danger, and
spent the time as merry as if they had been on shore. But on the eight
day there arose a brisk gale of wind, which prevented our tiding it up
the river; and still increasing, our ship rode forecastle in, and
shipped several large seas.

It was not long before horror seized the seamen themselves, and I heard
the master express this melancholy ejaculation, "Lord have mercy upon
us, we shall be all, lost and undone!" For my part, sick unto death, I
kept my cabin till the universal and terribly dreadful apprehensions of
our speedy fate made me get upon deck; and there I was affrighted
indeed. The sea went mountains high: I could see nothing but distress
around us; two ships had cut their masts on board, and another was
foundered; two more that had lost their anchors, were forced out to the
mercy of the ocean; and to save our lives we were forced to cut our
foremast and mainmast quite away.

Who is their so ignorant as not to judge of my dreadful condition? I was
but a fresh-water sailor and therefore it seemed more terrible. Our ship
was very good, but over-loaded; which made the sailors often cry out,
"She would founder!" Words I then was ignorant of. All this while the
storm continuing, and rather increasing, the master and the most sober
part of his men went to prayers, expecting death every moment. In the
middle of the night one cried out, "We had sprung a leak;" another,
"That there was four feet water in the hold." I was just ready to expire
with fear, when immediately all hands were called to the pump; and the
men forced me also in that extremity to share with them in their labour.
While thus employed, the master espying some light colliers, fired a gun
as a signal of distress; and I, not understanding what it meant, and
thinking that either the ship broke, or some dreadful thing happened,
fell into a swoon. Even in that common condition of woe, nobody minded
me, excepting to thrust me aside with their feet, thinking me dead, and
it was a great while before I recovered.

Happy it was for us, when, upon the signal given, they ventured out
their boats to save our lives. All our pumping had been in vain, and
vain had all our attempts been, had they not come to our ship's side,
and our men cast them a rope over the stern with a buoy to it, which
after great labour they got hold of, and we hauling them up to us got
into their boat, and left our ship which we perceived sink within less
than a quarter of an hour; and thus I learned what was meant by
_foundering at sea._ And now the men incessantly laboured to recover
their, own ship; but the sea ran so high, and the wind blew so hard,
that they thought it convenient to hale within shore; which, with great
difficulty and danger, at last we happily effected landing at a place
called _Cromer_, not far from Winterton lighthouse; from whence we all
walked to Yarmouth, where, as objects of pity, many good people
furnished us with necessaries to carry us either to Hull or London.

Strange, after all this, like the prodigal son, I did not return to my
father; who hearing of the ship's calamity, for a long time thought me
entombed in the deep. No doubt but I should have _shared on his fatted
calf_, as the scripture expresseth it; but my ill fate still pusheth me
on, in spite of the powerful convictions of reason and conscience.

When we had been at Yarmouth three days, I met my old companion, who had
given me the invitation to go on board along with his father. His
behaviour and speech were altered, and in a melancholy manner asked me
how I did, telling his father who I was, & how I had made this voyage
only for a trial to proceed further abroad. Upon which the old gentleman
turning to me gravely, said, "Young man, you ought never to go to sea
any more, but to take this for a certain sign that you never will
prosper in a sea-faring condition." "Sir" answered I, "will you take the
same resolution?" "It is a different case," said he, "it is my calling,
and consequently my duty; but as you have made this voyage for a trial,
you see what ill success heaven has set before your eyes; and perhaps
our miseries have been on your account, like _Jonah_ in the ship of
_Tarshish_. But pray what are you, and on what account did you go to
sea?" Upon which I very freely declared my whole story: at the end of
which he made this exclamation: "Ye sacred powers: what had I committed,
that such a wretch should enter into my ship to heap upon me such a
deluge of miseries!" But soon recollecting his passion, "Young man" said
he, "if you do not go back, depend upon it, wherever you go, you will
meet with disasters and disappointments till your father's words are
fulfilled upon you." And so we parted.

I thought at first to return home; but shame opposed that good motion,
as thinking I should be laughed at by my neighbours and acquaintance. So
strange is the nature of youth, who are not ashamed to sin, but yet
ashamed to repent; and so far from being ashamed of those actions for
which they may be acounted fools, they think it folly to return to their
duty, which is the principal mark of wisdom. In short I travelled up to
London, resolving upon a voyage, and a voyage I soon heard of, by my
acquaintance with a captain who took a fancy to me, to go to the coast
of Guinea. Having some money, and appearing like a gentleman, I went on
board, not as a common sailor or foremast man; nay, the commander agreed
I should go that voyage with him without any expence; that I should be
his messmate and companion, and I was very welcome to carry any thing
with me, and make the best merchandise I could.

I blessed my happy fortune, and humbly thanked my captain for this
offer; and acquainting my friends in Yorkshire, forty pounds were sent
me, the greatest part of which my dear father and mother contributed to,
with which I bought toys and trifles, as the captain directed me. My
captain also taught me navigation, how to keep an account of the ship's
course, take an observation, and led me into the knowledge of several
useful branches of the mathematics. And indeed this voyage made me both
a sailor and a merchant; for I brought home five pounds nine ounces of
gold-dust for my adventure which produced, at my return to London,
almost three hundred pounds. But in this voyage I was extremely sick,
being thrown into a violent calenture through the excessive heat,
trading upon the coast from the latitude of fifteen degrees north, even
to the line itself.

But alas! my dear friend the captain soon departed this life after his
arrival. This was a sensible grief to me; yet I resolved to go another
with his mate, who had now got command of the ship. This proved a very
unsuccessful one; for though I did not carry quite a hundred pounds of
my late acquired wealth, (so that I had two hundred pounds left, which I
reposed with the captain's widow, who was an honest gentlewoman) yet my
misfortunes in this unhappy voyage were very great. For our ship sailing
towards the Canary islands, we were chased by a Salee rover; and in
spite of all the haste we could make by crowding as much canvas as our
yards could spread, or our masts carry, the pirate gained upon us, to
that we prepared ourselves to fight. They had eighteen guns, and we had
but twelve. About three in the afternoon there was a desperate
engagement, wherein many were killed and wounded on both sides; but
finding ourselves overpowered with numbers, our ship disabled and
ourselves too impotent to have the least hopes of success, we were
forced to surrender; and accordingly were all carried prisoners into the
port of Salee. Our men were sent to the Emperor's court to be sold
there, but the pirate captain taking notice of me, kept me to be his
own slave.

In this condition, I thought myself the most miserable creature on
earth, and the prophecy of my father came afresh into my thoughts.
However, my condition was better than I thought it to be, as will soon
appear. Some hopes indeed I had that my new patron would go to sea
again, where he might be taken by a Spanish or Portuguese man of war,
and then I should be set at liberty. But in this I was mistaken; for he
never took me with him, but left me to look after his little garden, and
do the drudgery of his house, and when he returned from sea, would make,
me lie in the cabin, and look after the ship. I had no one that I could
communicate my thoughts to, which were continually meditating my escape;
no Englishman, Irishman, or Scotchman here but myself; and for two years
I could see nothing practicable, but only pleased myself with the

After some length of time, my patron, as I found, grew; so poor that he
could not fit out his ship as usual; and then he used constantly, once
or twice a week, if the weather was fair, to go out a fishing, taking me
and a young Moresco Boy to row the boat; and to much pleased was he with
me for my dexterity in catching the fish, that he would often send me
with a Moor, who was one of his kinsemen, and the Moresco youth, to
catch a dish of fish for him.

One morning, as we were at the sport, there arose such a thick fog that
we lost sight of the shore; and rowing we knew not which way, we
laboured all the night, and in the morning found ourselves in the ocean,
two leagues from land. However, we attained there at length, and made
the greater haste, because our stomachs were exceedingly sharp and
hungry. In order to prevent such disasters for the future, my patron
ordered a carpenter to build a little state room or cabin in the middle
of the long-boat, with a place behind it to steer and hale home the
main-sheet, with other conveniences to keep him from the weather, as
also lockers to put in all manner of provisions, with a handsome
shoulder of mutton sail, gibing over the cabin.

In this he frequently took us out a fishing: and one time inviting two
or three persons of distinction to go with him, made provision
extraordinary, providing also three fusees with powder and shot, that
they might have some sport at fowling along the sea-coast. The next
morning the boat was made clean, her ancient and pendants on, and every
thing ready: but their minds altering, my patron ordered us to go a
fishing, for that his guests would certainly sup with him that night.

And now I began to think of my deliverance indeed. In order to this I
persuaded to Moor to get some provisions on board, as not daring to
meddle with our patron's: and he taking my advice, we stored ourselves
with rusk biscuit, and three jars of water. Besides, I privately
conveyed into the boat a bottle or brandy, some twine, thread, a hammer,
hatchet, and a saw; and, in particular, some bees wax, which was a great
comfort to me, and served to make candles. I then persuaded Muley (for
so was the Moor called) to procure some powder and shot, pretending to
kill sea curlues, which he innocently and readily agreed to. In short,
being provided with all things necessary, we sailed out, resolving for
my own part to make my escape, though it should cost me my life.

When we had passed the castle, we fell a fishing; but though I knew
there was a bite, I dissembled the matter, in order to put out further
to sea. Accordingly we ran a league further; when giving the boy the
helm, and pretending to stoop for something, I seized Muley by surprise
and threw him overboard. As he was an excellent swimmer, he soon arose
and made towards the boat; upon which I took out a fusee, and presented
at him: "Muley" said I, "I never yet designed to do you any harm, and
seek nothing now but my redemption. I know you are able enough to swim
to shore, and save your life: but if you are resolved to follow me to
the endangering of mine, the very moment you proceed, I will shoot you
through the head." The harmless creature at these words, turned himself
from me, and I make no doubt got safe to land. Them turning to the boy
Xury, I perceived he trembled at the action: but I put him out of all
fear, telling him, that if he would be true and faithful to me, I would
do well by him. "And therefore," said I, "you must stroke your face to
be faithful: and, as the Turks have learned you, swear by Mahomet, and
the beard of your father, or else I will throw you into the sea also."
So innocent did the child then look, and with such an obliging smile
consented, that I readily believed him, and from that day forward began
to love him entirely.

We then pursued our voyage: and least they should think me gone to the
Straits' mouth, I kept to the southward to the truly Barbarian coast;
but in the dusk of the evening, I changed my course, and steering
directly S. and by E. that I might keep near the shore: and, having a
fresh gale of wind, with a pleasant smooth sea, by three o'clock next
day I was one hundred and fifty miles beyond the Emperor of Morocco's
dominions. Yet still having the dreadful apprehensions of being retaken,
I continued sailing for five days successively, till such time as the
wind shifting to the southward, made me conclude, that if any vessel was
in the chase of me, they would proceed no farther. After so much fatigue
and thought, I anchored at the mouth of a little river, I knew not what
or where: neither did I then see, any people. What I principally wanted
was fresh water; and I was resolved about dusk to swim ashore. But no
sooner did the gloomy clouds of night begin to succeed the declining
day, when we heard such barking, roaring, and howling of wild creatures,
that one might have thought the very strongest monsters of nature, or
infernal spirits had their residence there. Poor Xury, almost dead with
fear, entreated me not to go on shore that night. "Supposing I don't,
Xury," said I, "and in the morning we should see men who are worse than
those we fear, what then?" "O den we may give dem de shoot gun," replied
Xury, laughing, "and de gun make dem all run away."

The wit and broken English which the boy had learned among the captives
of our nation, pleased me entirely: and, to add to his cheerfulness I
gave him a dram of the bottle: we could get but little sleep all the
night for those terrible howlings they made; and, indeed, we were both
very much affrighted, when, by the rollings of the water, and other
tokens, we justly concluded one of these monsters made towards our boat.
I could not see till it came within two oars length, when taking my
fusee, I let fly at him. Whether I hit him or no, I cannot tell; but he
made towards the shore, and the noise of my gun increased the
stupendious noise of the monsters.

The next morning I was resolved to go on shore to get fresh water, and
venture my life among the beasts or savages should either attack me.
Xury said, he would take one of the jars and bring me some. I asked him
why he would go and not I? The poor boy answered, "If wild mans come
they eat me, you go away." A mind scarcely now to be imitated, so
contrary to self-preservation, the most powerful law of Nature. This
indeed increased my affection to the child. "Well, dear Xury," said I,
we will both go ashore, both kill wild mans, and they "shall eat neither
of us." So giving Xury a piece of rusk-bread to eat, and a dram, we
waded ashore, carrying nothing with us but our arms, and two jars for
water. I did not go out of sight of the boat, as dreading the savages
coming down the river in their canoes; but the boy seeing a low descent
or vale about a mile in the country, he wandered to it: and then running
back to me with great precipitation, I thought he was pursued by some
savage or wild beast; upon which I approached, resolving to perish or
protect him from danger. As he came nearer to me, I saw something
hanging over his shoulders, which was a creature he had shot like a
hare, but different in colour, and longer legs; however, we were glad of
it, for it proved wholesome, and nourishing meat: but what added to our
joy was, my boy assured me there was plenty of water, and that he _see
no wild mans. _And greater still was our comfort when we found fresh
water in the creek where we were when the tide was out, without going so
far up into the country.

In this place I began to consider that the Canary and Cape de Verde
islands lay not for off: but having no instrument, I knew not what
latitude, or when to stand off to sea for them; yet my hopes were, I
should meet some of the English trading vessels, who would relieve and
take us in.

The place I was in was no doubt that wild country, inhabited only by a
few, that lies between the Emperor of Morocco's dominions and the
Negroes. It is filled with wild beasts and the Moors use it for hunting
chiefly.--From this place I thought I saw the top of the mountain
Teneriff in the Canaries: which made me try twice to attain it: but as
often was I drove back, and so forced to pursue my fortune along shore.

Early one morning we came to an anchor under a little point of land, but
pretty high; and the tide beginning to flow, we lay ready to go further
in--But Xury, whose youthful and penetrating eyes were sharper then
mine, in a soft tone, desired me to keep far from land, lest we should
be devoured, "For look yonder, mayter," said he, "and see de dreadful
monster fast asleep on de side of de hill." Accordingly looking where he
pointed, I espied a fearful monster indeed. It was a terrible great lion
that lay on shore, covered as it were by a shade of a piece of the hill.
"Xury," said I, "you shall go on shore and kill him." But the boy looked
amazed: "Me kill him!" says he, "he eat me at one mouth:" meaning one
mouthful. Upon which I bid him lie still, and charging my biggest gun
with two slugs, and a good charge of powder, I took the best aim I could
to shoot him through the head, but his leg lying over his nose, the slug
broke his knee-bone. The lion awaking with the pain, got up, but soon
fell down, giving the most hideous groan I ever heard: but taking my
second piece, I shot him through the head, and then he lay struggling
for life. Upon this Xury took heart and desired my leave to go on shore.
"Go then," said I. Upon which taking a little gun in one hand, he swam
to shore with the other, and coming close to the lion, put a period to
his life, by shooting him again through the head.

But this was spending our ammunition in vain, the flesh not being good
to eat. Xury was like a champion, and comes on board for a hatchet, to
cut of the head of his enemy: but not having strength to perform it, he
cut off and brought me a foot. I bethought me, however, that his skin
would be of use. This work cost Xury and me a whole day: when spreading
it on the top of our cabin, the hot beams of the sun effectually dried
it in two days time, and it afterwards served me for a bed to lie on.

And now we sailed southerly, living sparingly on our provisions, and
went no oftener on shore than we were obliged for fresh water. My design
was to make the river Gambia or Senegal, or any where about the Cape de
Verde, in hopes to meet some European ship. If Providence did not so
favour me, my next course was to seek for the islands, or lose my life
among the Negroes. And in a word, I put my whole stress upon this,
"Either that I must meet with some ship or certainly perish."

One day as we were sailing along, we saw people stand on the shore
looking at us: we could also perceive they were black and stark naked. I
was inclined to go on shore, but Xury cried, "No, no:" however, I
approached nearer, and I found they run along the shore by me a good
way. They had no weapons in their hands, except one, who held a long
stick, which Xury told me was a lance, with which they could kill at a
great distance. I talked to them by signs and made them sensible I
wanted something to eat: they beckoned to me to stop my boat, while two
of them ran up into the country, and in less than half an hour came
back, and brought with them two pieces of dried flesh, and some corn,
which we kindly accepted; and to prevent any fears on either side, they
brought the food to the shore, laid it down, then went and stood a great
way off till we fetched it on board, and then came close to us again.

But while we were returning thanks to them, being all we could afford,
two mighty creatures came from the mountains: one as it were pursuing
the other with great fury, which we were the rather inclined to believe
as they seldom appear but in the night: and both these swiftly passing
by the Negroes, jumped into the sea, wantonly swimming about, as tho'
the diversion of the waters had put a stop to their fierceness. At last
one of them coming nearer to my boat than I expected or desired, I shot
him directly through the head; upon which he sunk immediately, and yet
rising again, would have willingly made the shore: but between the wound
and the strangling of the water, he died before he could reach it.

It is impossible to express the consternation the poor Negroes were in
at the firing of my gun; much less can I mention their surprise, when
they perceived the creature to be slain by it. I made signs to them to
draw near it with a rope, and then gave it them to hale on shore. It was
a beautiful leopard, which made me desire its skin: and the Negroes
seeming to covet the carcase, I freely gave it to them. As for the other
leopard, it made to shore, and ran with prodigious swiftness out of
sight. The Negroes having kindly furnished me with water, and with what
roots and grains their country afforded, I took my leave, and, after
eleven days sail, came in sight of the Cape de Verde, and those islands
called by its name. But the great distance I was from it, and fearing
contrary winds would prevent my reaching them, I began to grow
melancholy and dejected, when, upon a sudden, Xury cried out, "Master!
Master! a ship with a sail!" and looked as affrighted as if it was his
master's ship sent in search of us. But I soon discovered she was a
Portuguese ship, as I thought bound to the coast of Guinea for Negroes.
Upon which I strove for life to come up to them. But vain had it been,
if through their perspective glasses they had not perceived me and
shortened their sail to let me come up. Encouraged at this, I set up my
patron's ancient, and fired a gun, both as signals of distress; upon
which they very kindly lay to, so that in three hours time I came up
with them. They spoke to me in Portuguese, Spanish, and French, but
neither of these did I understand; till at length a Scots sailor called,
and then I told him I was an Englishman, who had escaped from the Moors
at Sallee: upon which they took me kindly on board, with all my effects.

Surely none can express the inconceivable joy I felt at this happy
deliverance! who from being a late miserable and forlorn creature was
not only relieved, but in favour with the master of the ship, to whom,
in return for my deliverance, I offered all I had. "God forbid," said
he, "that I should take any thing from you. Every thing shall be
delivered to you when you come to Brazil. If I have saved your life it
is no more than I should expect to receive myself from any other, when
in the same circumstances I should happen to meet the like deliverance.
And should I take from you what you have, and leave you at Brazil, why,
this would be only taking away a life I had given. My charity teaches me
better. Those effects you have will support you there, and provide you a
passage home again." And, indeed, he acted with the strictest justice in
what he did, taking my things into his possession, and giving me an
exact inventory, even to my earthen jars. He bought my boat of me for
the ship's use, giving me a note of eighty pieces of eight, payable at
Brazil; and if any body offered more, he would make it up. He also gave
me 60 pieces for my boy Xury. It way with great reluctance I was
prevailed upon to sell the child's liberty, who had served me so
faithfully; but the boy was willing himself; and it was agreed, that
after ten years he should be made free, upon his renouncing
Mahometanism, and embracing Christianity.

Having a pleasant voyage to the Brazils, we arrived in the Bay de Todos
los Santos, or All Saints Bay, in twenty-two days after. And here I
cannot forget the generous treatment of the captain. He would take
nothing for my passage, gave me twenty ducats for the leopard's skin,
and thirty for the lion's. Every thing he caused to be delivered, and
what I would sell he bought. In short I made about 220 pieces of my
cargo; and with this stock I entered once more, as I may say into the
scene of life.

Being recommended to an honest planter, I lived with him till such time
as I was informed of the manner of their planting and making sugar; and
seeing how well they lived, and how suddenly they grew rich, I was
filled with a desire to settle among them, and resolved to get my money
remitted to me, and to purchase a plantation.

To be brief, I bought a settlement next door to an honest and kind
neighbour, born at Lisbon, of English parents, whose plantation joining
to mine, we improved it very amicably together. Both our stocks were
low, and for two years we planted only for food: but the third year we
planted some tobacco, and each of us dressed a large piece of ground the
ensuing year for planting canes. But now I found how much I wanted
assistance, and repented the loss of my dear boy Xury.

Having none to assist me, my father's words came into my mind; and I
used to ask myself, if what I sought was only a middle station of life,
why could it not as well be obtained in England as here? When I pondered
on this with regret, the thoughts of my late deliverance forsook me. I
had none to converse with but my neighbour; no work to be done but by my
own hands; it often made me say, my condition was like to that of a man
cast upon a desolate island. So unhappy are we in our reflections, so
forgetful of what good things we receive ourselves, and so unthankful
for our deliverance from these calamities that others endure.

I, was in some measure settled, before the captain who took me up
departed from the Brazils. One day I went to him, and told him what
stock I had in London, desiring his assistance in getting it remitted;
to which the good gentleman readily consented, but would only have me
send for half my money, lest it should miscarry; which, if it did, I
might still have the remainder to support me: and so taking letters of
procuration of me, bid me trouble myself no farther about it.

And indeed wonderful was his kindness towards me; for he not only
procured the money I had drawn for upon my captain's widow, but sent me
over a servant with a cargo proportionable to my condition. He also sent
me over tools of all sorts, iron-work, and utensils necessary for my
plantation, which proved to be of the greatest use to me in my business.

Wealth now accumulating on me, and uncommon success crowning my
prosperous labours, I might have rested happy in that middle state of
life my father had so often recommended, yet nothing would content me,
such was my evil genius, but I must leave this happy station, for a
foolish ambition in rising; and thus, once more, I cast myself into the
greatest gulph of misery that ever poor creature fell into. Having lived
four years in Brazil, I had net only learned the language, but
contracted acquaintance with the most eminent planters, and even the
merchants of St. Salvadore; to whom, once, by way of discourse, having
given account of my two voyages to the coast of Guinea and the manner of
trading there for mere trifles, by which we furnish our plantations with
Negroes, they gave such attention to what I said, that three of them
came one morning to me, and told me they had a secret proposal to make.
After enjoining me to secrecy (it being an infringement on the powers of
the Kings of Portugal and Spain) they told me they had a mind to fit out
a ship to go to Guinea, in order to stock the plantation with Negroes,
which as they could not be publicly sold, they would divide among them:
and if I would go their supercargo in the ship, to manage the trading
part, I should have ah equal share of the Negroes, without providing any
stock. The thing indeed was fair enough, had I been in another
condition. But I, born to be my own destroyer, could not resist the
proposal, but accepted the offer upon condition of their looking after
my plantation. So making a formal will, I bequeathed my effects to my
good friend the captain, as my universal heir; but obliged him to
dispose of my effects as directed, one half of the produce to himself,
and the other to be shipped to England.

The ship being fitted out, and all things ready, we set sail the first
of September, 1659, being the same day eight-years I left my father and,
mother in Yorkshire. We sailed northward upon the coast, in order to
gain Africa, till we made Cape Augustine; from whence going farther into
the ocean, out of sight of land, we steered as though we were bound for
the isle Fernand de Norenba, leaving the islands on the east; and then
it was that we met with a terrible tempest, which continued for twelve
days successively, so that the wind carried us wheresoever they pleased.
In this perplexity one of our men died, and one man and a boy were
washed overboard. When the weather cleared up a little, we found
ourselves eleven degrees north latitude, upon the coast of Guinea. Upon
this the captain gave reasons for returning; which I opposed,
counselling him to stand away for Barbadoes, which as I supposed, might
be attained in fifteen days. So altering our course, we sailed
north-west and by west, in order to reach the Leeward Islands; but a
second storm succeeding, drove us to the westward; so that we were
justly afraid of falling into the hands of cruel savages, or the paws of
devouring beasts of prey.

In this great distress, one of our men, early in the morning cried out,
_Land, land!_ which he had no sooner cried out, but our ship struck upon
a sand bank, and in a moment the sea broke over her in such a manner
that we expected we should all have perished immediately. We knew
nothing where we were, or upon what land we were driven; whether an
island or the main, inhabited or not inhabited; and we could not so much
as hope that the ship would hold out many minutes, without breaking in
pieces, except the wind by a miracle should turn about immediately.
While we stood looking at one another, expecting death every moment, the
mate lay a hold of the boat, and with the help of the rest got her flung
over the ship's side, and getting all into her, being eleven of us,
committed ourselves to God's mercy and the wild sea. And now we saw that
this last effort would not be a sufficient protection from death; so
high did the sea rise, that it was impossible the boat should live. As
to making sail, we had none; neither if we had, could we make use of
any. So that when we had rowed, or rather were driven about a league and
a half, a raging wave, like a lofty mountain, came rolling astern of us,
and took us with such fury, that at once it overset the boat. Thus being
swallowed up in a moment, we had hardly time to call upon the tremendous
name of God; much less to implore, in dying ejaculations, his infinite
mercy to receive our departing souls.

Men are generally counted insensible, when struggling in the pangs of
death; but while I was overwhelmed with water, I had the most dreadful
apprehensions imaginable. For the joys of heaven and the torments of
hell, seemed to present themselves before me in these dying agonies, and
even small space of time, as it were, between life and death. I was
going I thought I knew not whither, into a dismal gulf unknown, and as
yet unperceived, never to behold my friends, nor the light of this world
any more! Could I even have thought of annihilation, or a total
dissolution of soul as well as body, the gloomy thoughts of having no
further being, no knowledge of what we hoped for, but an eternal
_quietus_, without life or sense: even that, I say, would have been
enough to strike me with horror and confusion! I strove, however, to the
last extremity, while all my companions were overpowered and entombed in
the deep: and it was with great difficulty I kept my breath till the
wave spent itself, and retiring back, left me on the shore half dead
with the water I had taken in. As soon as I got on my feet, I ran as
fast as I could, lest another wave should pursue me, and carry me back
again. But for all the haste I made, I could not avoid it: for the sea
came after me like a high mountain, or furious enemy; so that my
business was to hold my breath, and by raising myself on the water,
preserve it by swimming. The next dreadful wave buried me at once twenty
or thirty feet deep, but at the same time carried me with a mighty force
and swiftness toward the shore: when raising myself, I held out as well
as possible, till at length the water having spent itself, began to
return, at which I struck forward, and feeling ground with my feet, I
took to my heels again. Thus being served twice more, I was at length
dashed against a piece of a rock, in such a manner as left me senseless;
but recovering a little before the return of the wave, which, no doubt,
would then have overwhelmed me, I held fast by the rock till those
succeeding waves abated; and then fetching another run, was overtaken by
a small wave, which was soon conquered. But before any more could
overtake me, I reached the main land, where clambering up the cliffs of
the shore, tired and almost spent I sat down on the grass, free from the
dangers of the foaming ocean.

No tongue can express the ecstasies and transports that my soul felt at
the happy deliverance. It was like a reprieve to a dying malefactor,
with a halter about his neck, and ready to be turned off. I was wrapt up
in contemplation and often lifted up my hands, with the profoundest
humility, to the Divine Powers, for saving, my life, when the rest of my
companions were all drowned. And now I began to cast my eyes around, to
behold what place I was in and what I had next to do. I could see no
house nor people; I was wet, yet had no clothes to shift me; hungry and
thirsty, yet had nothing to eat or drink; no weapon to destroy any
creature for my sustenance; nor defend myself against devouring beasts;
in short, I had nothing but a knife, a tobacco pipe, and a box half
filled with tobacco. The darksome night coming on upon me, increased my
fears of being devoured by wild creatures; my mind was plunged in
despair, and having no prospect, as I thought, of life before me, I
prepared for another kind of death then what I had lately escaped. I
walked about a furlong to see if I could find any fresh water, which I
did, to my great joy: and taking a quid of tobacco to prevent hunger, I
got up into a thick bushy tree, and seating myself so that I could not
fall, a deep sleep overtook me, and for that night buried my sorrows in
a quiet repose.

It was broad day the next morning before I awaked; when I not only
perceived the tempest was ceased, but law the ship driven almost as far
as the rock before-mentioned, which the waves had dashed me against, and
which was about a mile from the place where I was. When I came down from
my apartment in the tree, I perceived the ship's boat two miles distant
on my right-hand, lying on shore, as the waves had cast her. I thought
to have got to her; but there being an inlet of water of about half a
mile's breadth between it and me, I returned again towards the ship, as
hoping to find something for my more immediate subsistence. About noon,
when the sea was calm, that I could come within a quarter of a mile of
her, it was to my grief I perceived, that, if we had kept on board all
our lives had been saved. These thoughts, and my solitude drew tears
from my eyes, though all in vain. So resolving to get to the ship, I
stripped and leapt into the water, when swimming round her, I was afraid
I should not get any thing to lay hold of; but it was my good fortune to
espy a small piece of rope hang down by the fore chains, so low that, by
the help of it, though with great difficulty, I got into the forecastle
of the ship. Here I found that the ship was bulged, and had a great deal
of water in her hold: her stern was lifted up against a bank, and her
head almost to the water. All her quarter and what was there, was free
and dry. The provisions I found in good order, with which I crammed my
pockets, and losing no time, ate while I was doing other things: I also
found some rum, of which I took a hearty dram: and now I wanted for
nothing except a boat, which indeed was all, to carry away what was
needful for me.

Necessity occasions quickness of thought. We had several spare yards, a
spare topmast or two, and two or three large spars of wood. With these I
fell to work, and flung as many of them overboard as I could manage,
tying every one of them with a rope, that they might not drive away.
This done, I went down to the ship's side, and tyed four of them fast
together at both ends, in form of a raft, and laying two or three short
pieces of plank upon them crosswise, I found it would bear me, but not
any considerable weight. Upon which I went to work again, cutting a
spare topmast into three lengths, adding them to my raft with a great
deal of labour and pains. I then considered what I should load it with,
it being not able to bear a ponderous burden. And this I soon thought
of, first laying upon it all the planks and boards I could get; next I
lowered down three of the seamen's chests, after I had filled them with
bread, rice, three Dutch cheeses, five pieces of dried goat's flesh, and
some European corn, what little the rats had spared: and for liquors, I
found several cases of bottles belonging to our skipper, in which were
some cordial waters, and four or five gallons of rack, which I stowed by
themselves. By this time the tide beginning to flow, I perceived my
coat, waistcoat, and shirt, swim away, which I had left on the shore; as
for my linen breeches and stockings, I swam with them to the ship; but I
soon found clothes enough, though I took no more than I wanted for the
present. My eyes were chiefly on tools to work with; and after a long
search, I found out the carpenter's chest, which I got safe down on my
raft. I then looked for arms and ammunition, and in the great cabin
found two good fowling pieces, two pistols, several powder horns filled,
a small bag of shot, and two old rusty swords. I likewise found three
barrels of powder, two of which were good, but the third had taken
water, also two or three broken oars, two saws, an ax, and a hammer. I
then put to sea, and in getting to shore had three encouragements. 1. A
smooth calm sea. 2. The tide rising and letting in to shore. 3. The
little wind there was blew towards the land. After I had sailed about a
mile, I found the raft to drive a little distance from the place where I
first landed; and then I perceived a little opening of the land, with a
strong current of the tide running into it: upon which I kept the middle
of the stream. But great was my concern, when on a sudden the fore part
of my raft ran a ground, so that had I not, with great difficulty, for
near half an hour, kept my back straining against the chests to keep my
effects in their places, all I had would have gone into the sea. But
after some time, the rising of the water caused the raft to float again,
and coming up a little river with land on both sides, I landed in a
little cove, as near the mouth as possible, the better to discover a
sail, if any such providentially passed that way.

Not far off, I espied a hill of stupendous height, surounded with lesser
hills about it, and thither I was resolved to go and view the country
that I might see what part was best, to fix my habitation. Accordingly,
arming myself with a pistol a fowling piece, powder and ball, I ascended
the mountain. There I perceived I was in an island, encompassed by the
sea; no distant lands to be seen but scattering rocks that lay to the
west: that it seemed to be a barren place, and, as I thought, inhabited
only by wild beasts. I perceived abundance of fowls, but ignorant of
what kind, or whether good for nourishment; I shot one of them at my
return, which occasioned a confused screaming among the other birds, and
I found it, by its colours and beak, to be a kind of a hawk, but its
flesh was perfect carrion.

When I came to my raft, I brought my effects on shore, which work spent
that day entirely; and fearing that some cruel beasts might devour me in
the night time while I slept, I made a kind of hut or barricade with the
chests and boards I had brought onshore. That night I slept very
comfortably; and the next morning my thoughts were employed to make a
further attempt on the ship, and bring away what necessaries I could
find, before another storm should break her to pieces. Accordingly I got
on board as before, and prepared a second raft far more nice then the
first, upon which I brought away the carpenter's stores, two or three
bags full of nails, a great jack-screw, a dozen or two of hatchets, and
a grind-stone. I also took away several things that belonged to the
gunner, particularly two or three iron crows, two barels of
musket-bullets, another fowling-piece, a small quantity of powder, and a
large bagful of small shot. Besides these, I took all the men's clothes
I could find, a spare fore topsail, a hammock, and some bedding; and
thus completing my second cargo, I made all the haste to shore I could,
fearing some wild beast might destroy what I had there already. But I
only found a little wild cat sitting on one of the chests, which seeming
not to fear me or the gun that I presented at her, I threw her a piece
of biscuit, which she instantly ate, and departed.

When I had gotten these effects on shore, I went to work in order to
make me a little tent with the sail and some poles which I had cut for
that purpose; and having finished it, what things might be damaged by
the weather I brought in, piling all the empty chests and calks in a
circle, the better to fortify it against any sudden attempt of man or
beast. After this, I blocked up the doors with some boards, and an empty
chest, turned the long way out. I then charged my gun and pistol, and
laying my bed on the ground, slept as comfortably, till next morning, as
though I had been in a christian country.

Now, though I had enough to subsist me a long time, yet despairing of a
sudden deliverance, or that both ammunition and provision might be spent
before such a thing happened, I coveted as much as I could; and so long
as the ship remained in that condition, I daily brought away one
necessary or other; particularly the rigging, sails, and cordage, some
twine, a barrel of wet powder, some sugar, a barrel of meal, 3 calks of
rum, &, what indeed was most welcome to me, a whole hogshead of bread.

The next time I went I cut the cables in pieces, carried off a hawser
whole, with a great deal of iron work, and made another raft with the
mizen and sprit-sail-yard; but this being so unwieldy, by the too heavy
burden I had upon it, and not being able so dextrously to guide it, as
the former, both my cargo and I were overturned. For my part, all the
damage I sustained was a wet skin; and, at low water, after much labour
in diving, I got most of the cables, and some pieces of iron.

Thirteen days I had now been in the island, and eleven times on board,
bringing away all that was possible, and, I believe, had the weather
been calm, I should have brought away the whole ship piece by piece. As
I was going the twelfth time, the wind began to rise; however, I
ventured at low water, and rummaging the cabin, in a locker I found
several razors, scissors, and some dozens of knives and forks; and in
another thirty-six pounds in pieces of eight, silver and gold. _Ah!
simple vanity_ said I _whom this world so much dotes on, where is now
thy virtue, thy excellency to me? You cannot procure me one thing
needful, nor remove me from this desolate island to a place of plenty.
One of these knives, so meanly esteemed, is to me more preferable than
all this heap. E'en therefore remain where thou art to sink in the deep
as unregarded, even as a creature whose life is not worth preserving._
Yet, after all this exclamation, I wrapt it up in a piece of canvas,
and began to think of making another raft, but I soon perceived the wind
began to arise, a fresh gale blowing from the shore, and the sky
overcast with clouds and darkness; so thinking a a raft to be in yaw, I
let myself into the water with what things I had about me, and it was
with much difficulty I got ashore, when soon after it blew a
fearful storm.

That night I slept very contentedly in my little tent, surrounded with
all my effects; but when I looked out in the morning no more ship was to
be seen. This much surprised me for the present; yet, when I considered
I had lost no time, abated no pains and had got every thing useful out
of her, I comforted myself in the best manner, and entirely submitted to
the will of Providence.

My next thoughts were, how I should defend and secure myself from
savages and wild beasts, if any such were in the island. At one time I
thought of digging a cave, at another I was for erecting a tent; and, at
length, I resolved to do both: The manner or form of which will not, I
hope, be unpleasing to describe.

When I considered the ground where I was, that it was moorish, and had
no fresh water near it, my resolutions were to search for a soil healthy
and well watered, where I might not only be sheltered from the sun's
scorching heat, but be more conveniently situated, as well to be secured
from wild men and beasts of prey, as more easily to discover any distant
sail, should it ever happen.

And, indeed, it was not long before I had my desire. I found a little
plain near a rising hill, the front towards which being as steep as a
house side, nothing could descend on me from the top. On the side of
this rock, was a little hollow place, resembling the entrance or door of
a cave. Just before this place; on the circle of the green, I resolved
my tent should stand. This plain did not much exceed a hundred yards
broad, and about twice as long, like a delightful green, before my door,
with a pleasing, though an irregular descent every way to the low
grounds by the sea-side, lying on the N. W. side of the hill, so that it
was sheltered from the excessive heat of the sun. After this, I drew a
semi-circle, containing ten yards in a semi-diameter, and twenty yards
in the whole, driving down two rows; of strong stakes, not 6 inches from
each other. Then with the pieces of cable which I had cut on board, I
regularly laid them in a circle between the piles up to their tops,
which were more than five feet out of the earth, and after drove another
row of piles looking within side against them, between two or three feet
high, which made me conclude it a little impregnable castle against men
and beasts. And for my better security I would have no door, but entered
in and came out by the help of a ladder, which I also made.

Here was my fence and fortress, into which I carried all my riches,
ammunition, and stores. After which, working on the rock, what with dirt
and stones I dug out, I not only raised my ground two feet, but made a
little cellar to my mansion-house; and this cost me many days labour and
pains. One day in particular a shower of rain falling, thunder and
lighting ensued, which put me in terror lest my powder should take fire,
and not only hinder my necessary subsistence, by killing me food, but
even blow up me and my habitation. To prevent which, I fell to making
boxes and bags, in order to separate it, having by me near 150lb.
weight. And thus being established as king of the island, every day I
went out with my gun to see what I could kill that was fit to eat. I
soon perceived numbers of goats but very shy, yet having watched them
narrowly, and seeing I could better shoot off the rocks than when in the
low grounds, I happened to shoot a she-goat suckling a young kid; which
not thinking its dam slain, stood by her unconcerned; and when I took
the dead creature up, the young one followed me even to the inclosure. I
lifted the kid over the pales, and would willingly have kept it alive;
but finding it could not be brought to eat, I was forced to slay it also
for my subsistence.

Thus entered into as strange a scene of life as ever any man was in, I
had most melancholy apprehensions concerning my deplorable condition:
and many times the tears would plentifully run down my face, when I
considered how I was debarred from all communications with human kind.
Yet while these disponding cogitations would seem to make me accuse
Providence, other good thoughts would interpose and reprove me after
this manner: Well, supposing you are desolate, it is not better to be so
than totally perish? Why, were you singled out to be saved and the rest
destroyed? Why should you complain, when not only your life is
preserved, but the ship driven into your reach, in order to take what
was necessary out of her for your subsistence? But to proceed, it was,
by the account I kept, the 30th of September, when I first landed on
this island. About twelve days after, fearing lest I should lose my
reckoning of time, nay, even forget the Sabbath days, for want of pen,
ink, and paper, I carved with a knife upon a large post, in great
letters; and set it up: in the similitude of a cross, on the seashore
where I landed, I CAME ON SHORE, _Sept._ 30 1659. Every day I cut a
notch with my knife on the sides of the square post, and this on the
Sabbath was as long again as the rest; and every first day of the month
as long again as that long one. In this manner I kept my calendar,
weekly, monthly or yearly reckoning of time. But had I made a more
strict search (as afterwards I did) I needed not have set up this mark;
for among the parcels belonging to the gunner, carpenter, and captain's
mate, I found those very things I wanted; particularly pens, ink, and
paper. So I found two or three compasses, some mathematical
instruments, dials, perspective glasses, books of navigation, three
English Bibles, and several other good books, which I carefully put
up.--Here I cannot but call to mind our having a dog and two cats on
board, whom I made inhabitants with me in my castle. Though one might
think I had all the necessities that were desirable, yet still I found
several things wanting. My ink was daily wasting; I wanted needles,
pins, and thread to mend or keep my clothes together; and particularly a
spade, pickax, or shovel, to remove the earth. It was a year before I
finished my little bulwark; and having some intervals of relaxation,
after my daily wandering abroad for provision, I drew up this plan,
alternately, as creditor and debtor, to remind me of the miseries and
blessings of my life, under so many various circumstances.


I am cast upon a desolate island, having no hopes, no prospects of a
welcome deliverance.

Thus miserably am I singled out from the enjoyment or company of all

Like an hermit (rather should I say a lonely anchorite) am I forced from
human conversation.

My clothes after some time will be worn out; and then I shall have none
to cover me.

When my ammunition is wasted, then shall I remain without any defence
against wild men and beasts.

I have no creature, no soul to speak to; none to beg assistance from.
Some comfort would it be to resound my woes where I am understood, and
beg assistance where I might hope for relief.


But yet I am preserved, while my companions are perished in the raging

Yet set apart to be spared from death. And he, who has so preserved me,
can deliver me from this condition.

However, I have food to eat, and even a happy prospect of subsistence
while life endures.

At present I enjoy what is absolutely needful; and the climate is so
hot, that had I never so many, I would hardly wear them.

Yet if it does, I see no danger of any hurt to me, as in Africa; And
what if I had been cast away, upon that coast.

Is there not God to converse to, and is not he able to relieve thee?
Already has he afforded thee sustenance, and put it in thy power to
provide for thyself till he sends thee a deliverance.

And now easing my mind a little by these reflections, I began to render
my life as easy as possible.

I must here add, to the description I have given of my habitation, that
having raised a turf wall against the outside of it, I thatched it so
close as might keep it from the inclemency of the weather; I also
improved it within, enlarged my cave, and made a passage and door in the
rock, which came out beyond the pale of my fortification. I next
proceeded to make a chair and a table, and so began to study such
mechanical arts as seemed to me practicable. When I wanted a plank or
board I hewed down a tree with my hatchet, making it as thin with my ax
as possible, and then smooth enough with an adz to answer my designs:
yet though I could make no more this way than one board out of a tree,
in length of time I got boards enough to shelter all my stores, every
thing being regularly placed, and my guns securely hanging against the
side of the rock. This made it a very pleasant sight to me, as being the
result of vast labour and diligence; which leaving for a while, and me
to the enjoyment of it, I shall give the reader an account of my Journal
from the day of my landing, till the fixing and settling of my
habitation, as heretofore shown.

* * * * *


_September 30, 1659_. I unhappy Robinson Crusoe, having suffered
shipwreck, was driven on this desolate island, which I named the
_Desolate Island of Despair_, my companions being swallowed up in the
tempestous ocean. The next day I spent in consideration of my unhappy
circumstances, having no prospect but of death, either to be starved
with hunger, or devoured with beasts or merciless savages.

_Oct. 1_. That morning, with great comfort, I beheld the ship drove
ashore. Some hopes I had, that when the storm was abated I might be able
to get some food and necessaries out of her, which I conceived were not
damaged, because the ship did stand upright. At this time I lamented the
loss of my companions, and our misfortune in leaving the vessel. When I
perceived the ship as it were lay dry, I waded through the sands, then
swam aboard, the weather being very rainy, and with scarcely any wind.

To the 14th of this month, my time was employed in making voyages, every
tide getting what I could out of the ship. The weather very wet and

_Oct. 20_. My raft and all the goods thereon were overset: yet I
recovered most again at low water.

_Oct. 25_. It blew hard, and rained night and day, when the ship went in
pieces, so that nothing was seen of her but the wreck at low water. This
day I secured my goods from the inclemency of the weather.

_Oct. 26_. I wandered to see where I could find a place convenient for
my abode. I fixed upon a rock in the evening, marked out a half-moon,
intending to erect a wall, fortified with piles, lined within with
pieces of cables, and covered with turf.

_Nov. 1_. I erected my tent under a rock, and took up my lodgings very
contentedly in a hammock that night.

_Nov._ 2. This day I fenced myself in with timber, chests, and boards.

_Nov._ 3. I shot two wild fowl, resembling ducks, which were good to
eat, and in the afternoon made me a table.

_Nov._ 4. I began to live regularly. In the morning I allowed myself two
or three hours to walk out with my gun; I then worked till near eleven
o'clock, and afterwards refreshed myself, with what I had to eat. From
twelve to two I would lie down to sleep. Extremely sultry weather. In
the evening go to work again.

_Nov._ 5. Went out with my gun and dog, shot a wild ca with a soft skin,
but her flesh was good for nothing. The skins of those I killed, I
preserved. In my return, I perceived many wild birds, and was terrified
by some seals which made off to sea.

_Nov._ 6. Completed my table.

_Nov._ 7. Fair weather. I worked till the 12th, but omitted the 11th,
which, according to my calculation, I supposed to be Sunday.

_Nov._ 13. Rain in abundance, which, however, much cooled the air; with
thunder and lightening, caused in me a terrible surprise. The weather
clearing, I secured my powder in separate parcels.

_Nov._ 14--16. I made little boxes for my powder, lodging them in
several places. I also shot a large fowl, which proved excellent meat.

_Nov._ 17. I began to dig in the rock, yet was obliged to desist for
want of a pickax, shovel, and wheel-barrow. Iron crows I caused to
supply the place of the first; but with all my art I could not make a

_Nov._ 18. It was my fortune to find a tree, resembling what Brazilians
call an iron tree. I had like to have spoiled my ax with cutting it,
being very hard and exceedingly heavy; yet with much labour & industry,
I made a sort of a spade out of it.

_Nov._ 21. These tools being made, I daily carried on my business;
eighteen days I allowed for enlarging my cave, that it might serve me,
not only for a warehouse, but kitchen, parlour, and cellar. I commonly
lay in the tent, unless the weather was rainy that I could not lie dry.
So wet would it be at certain seasons, that I was obliged to cover all
within the pale with long poles, in the form of rafters, leaning against
the rock, and loaded them with flags and large leaves of trees,
resembling a thatch.

_Dec._ 10. No sooner did I think my habitation finished, but suddenly a
great deal of the top broke in, so that it was a mercy I was not buried
in the ruins. This occasioned a great deal of pains and trouble to me,
before I could make it firm and durable.

_Dec_ 17. I nailed up some shelves and drove nails and staples in the
wall and posts to hang things out of the way.

_Dec_ 20. Every thing I got into its place, then made a sort of a
dresser, and another table.

_Dec._ 24. 25. Rain in abundance.

_Dec._ 26. Very fair weather.

_Dec._ 27. I chanced to light on some goats, shot one and wounded
another. I led it home in a string, bound up its leg, and cured it in a
little time; at length it became so tame and familiar as to feed before
the door, and follow me where I pleased. This put me in mind to bring up
tame creatures, in order to supply me with food after my ammunition
was spent.

_Dec._ 28, 29, 30. The weather being excessively hot, with little air,
obliged me for the most part, to keep within doors.

_Jan_ 1. Still sultry, however, obliged by necessity, I went out with my
gun, and found a great store of goats in the valleys; they were
exceedingly shy, nor could my dog hunt them down.

_Jan._ 3 to 14. My employment this time was to finish the wall before
described, and search the island. I discovered a kind of pigeons like
our house-pigeons in a nest among the rocks. I brought them home, nursed
them till they could fly, and then they left me. After this, I shot
some, which proved excellent food. Some time I spent vainly in
contriving to make a cask; I may well say it was vain, because I could
neither joint the staves; nor fix the heads, so as to make it tight: So,
leaving that, took some goat's tallow I had about me, and a little okum
for the wick, and provided myself with a lamp, which served me instead
of candles.

But now a very strange event happened. For being in the height of my
search, what should come into my hand, but a bag, which was used to hold
corn (as I supposed) for the fowls; so immediately resolving to put
gunpowder in it, I shook all the hulks and dirt upon one side of the
rock, little expecting what the consequences would be. The rain had
fallen plentifully a few days before; and about a month after, to my
great amazement something began to lock out very green and flourishing;
and when I came to view it more nicely, every day as it grew, I found
about ten or twelve ears of green barley appeared in the very same shape
and make as that in England.

I can scarce express the agitations of my mind at this sight. Hitherto I
had looked upon the actions of this life no otherwise than only as the
events of blind chance and fortune. But now the appearance of this
barley, flourishing in a barren soil, and my ignorance in not conceiving
how it should come there, made me conclude _that miracles were not yet
ceased:_ nay, I even thought that God had appointed it to grow there
without any seed, purely for my sustenance in this miserable and
desolate island. And indeed such great effect this had upon me, that it
often made me melt into tears, through a grateful sense of God's
mercies; and the greater still was my thankfulness, when I perceived
about this little field of barley some rice stalks, also wonderfully

While thus pleased in mind, I concluded there must be more corn in the
island; and therefore made a diligent search narrowly among the rocks;
but not being able to find any, on a sudden it came into my mind, how I
had shaken the husks of corn out of the bag, and then my admiration
ceased, with my gratitude to the Divine Being, _as thinking it was but
natural_, and not to be conceived a miracle; though even the manner of
its preservation might have made me own it as a wonderful event of God's
kind providence.

It was about the latter end of June when the ears of this corn ripened,
which I laid up very carefully together with 20 or 30 stalks of rice,
expecting one day I should reap the fruit of my labour; yet four years
were expired before I could allow myself to eat any barley-bread, and
much longer time before I had any rice. After this, with indefatigable
pains and industry for three or four months, at last I finished my wall
on the 14th, of April, having no way to go into it, but by ladder
against the wall.

_April_ 16. I finished my ladder, and ascended it; afterwards pulled it
up, then let it down on the other side, and descended into my new
habitation, where I had space enough, and so fortified that nothing
could attack me, without scaling the walls.

But what does all human pains and industry avail, if the blessing of God
does not crown our labours? Or who can stand before the Almighty, when
he stretcheth forth his arm? For one time as I was at the entrance of my
cave, there happened such a dreadful earthquake, that not only the roof
of the cave came rumbling about my ears, but the posts seemed to crack
terribly at the same time. This put me in great amazement; and running
to the ladder, and getting over the wall, I then plainly knew it was an
earthquake, the place I stood on sustaining three terrible shocks in
less than three minutes. But judge of my terror when I saw the top of a
great rock roll into the sea; I then expected the island would be
swallowed up every moment: And what made the scene still more dreadful,
was to see the sea thrown into the most violent agitations and disorders
by this tremendous accident.

For my part I stood like a criminal at the place of execution ready to
expire. At the moving of the earth, I was, as it were, sea-sick; and
very much afraid lest the rock, under which was my fence and habitation,
should overwhelm it and myself in a lasting tomb.

When the third dreadful shock had spent itself, my spirits began to
revive; yet still I would not venture to ascend the ladder, but
continued fitting, not knowing what I should do. So little grace had I
then, as only to say _Lord have mercy upon me!_ and no sooner was the
earthquake over, but that pathetic prayer left me.

It was not long after, when a horrible tempest arose, at the same time
attended with a huricane of wind. The sea seemed mountains high, and the
waves rolled so impetously, that nothing could be perceived but froth
and foam. Three hours did this storm continue, and in so violent a
manner, as to tear the very trees up by the roots, which was succeeded
by abundance of rain. When the tempest was over I went to my tent: but
the rain coming on in a furious manner, I was obliged to take shelter in
the cave, where I was forced to cut a channel through my fortification
to let the water out. It continued raining all that night, and some time
the next day. These accidents made me resolve, as soon as the weather
cleared up, to build me a little hut in some open place, walled round to
defend me from wild creatures and savages; not doubting but at the next
earthquake, the mountain would fall upon my habitation and me, and
swallow up all in its bowels.

_April_ 16--20. These days I spent in contriving how and in what manner
I should fix my place of abode. All this while I was under the most
dreadful apprehensions. When I looked round my habitation, every thing I
found in its proper place. I had several resolutions whether I should
move or not; but at length resolved to stay where I was, till I found
out a convenient place where I might pitch my tent.

_April_ 22. When I began to put my resolutions in practice, I was stopt
for want of tools and instruments to work with. Most of my axes and
hatchets were useless, occasioned by cutting the hard timber that grew
on the island. It took me up a full week to make my grind-stone of use
to me, and at last I found out a way to turn it about with my foot, by
help of a wheel and a string.

_April_ 28--29. These days were spent in grinding my tools.

_April_ 30. My bread falling short, I allowed myself but one biscuit a

_May_ 1. As I walked along the sea shore I found a barrel of gunpowder,
and several pieces of the wreck, the sea had flung up. Having secured
those, I made to the ship, whose stern was torn off, and washed a great
distance ashore; but the rest lay in the sands. This I suppose was
occasioned by the earthquake. I now resolved to keep my old place of
abode; and also to go to the ship that day, but then found it

_May_ 3. This day I went on board, and with my saw sawed off one of the
beams, which kept her quarter-deck. I then cleared the sand till flood.

_May_ 4. I caught some fish, but they were not wholesome, The same day I
also catched a young dolphin.

_May 5._ 'This day I also repaired to the wreck, and sawed another
piece of timber, and when the flood came, I made a float of three great
planks, which were driven ashore by the tide.

_May 6, 7, 8, 9._ These days I brought off the iron bolts, opened the
deck with the iron crow, and carried two planks to land, having made a
way into the very middle of the wreck.

_May 10, 11, 12, 13, 14._ All this time I spent in bringing off great
quantities of iron and timber.

_May 15._ Took with me two hatchets on purpose to cut off some lead from
the roll, but all in vain, for it lay too low under water.

_May 16._ I omitted going to the wreck this day, for employing myself in
looking for pigeons, I outstaid my time.

_May 17._ I perceived several pieces of the wreck driven ashore, which I
found belonged to the head of the ship.

_May 24._ To this day I worked on the wreck, and with great difficulty
loosened some things so much with the crow, that at the first flowing
tide several casks floated out, and many of the seamen's chests, yet
that day nothing came to land but pieces of timber, and a hogshead which
had some Brazil pork in it. I continued working to the 15th of June;
(except necessary times for food and rest) and had I known how to have
built a boat, I had timber and planks enough; I had also near 100 weight
of sheet lead.

_June 16._ As I was wandering towards the sea-side, I found a large
tortoise or turtle, being the first I had seen on the island, though, as
I afterwards found, there were many on the other side of it.

_June 17._ This day I spent in cooking it, found in her threescore eggs,
and her flesh the most savoury and pleasant I ever tasted in my life.

_June 18._ I staid within this day, there being a continual rain; and it
was somewhat more chilly and cold than usual.

_June 19._ Exceedingly bad, being taken with a trembling and shivering.

_June 20._ Awake all night, my head racked with pain and feverish.

_June 21._ Sick unto death, and terrified with the dismal apprehensions
of my condition. Prayed to God more frequently, but very confusedly.

_June 22._ Something better, but still uneasy in my mind.

_June 23._ Again relapsed much as before.

_June 24._ Mended a second time.

_June 25._ A violent ague for seven hours, cold and hot fits succeeded
with faint sweats.

_June 26._ Better, but very weak, yet I scrambled out, shot a she-goat,
brought it home and broiled some of it; I would willingly have stewed
it, and made some broth, but had no pod.

_June 27_ All this day I was afflicted with an ague; thirsty, yet I
could not help myself to water: Prayed to God in these words: _Lord, in
pity look upon me: Lord, have mercy upon me: have mercy upon me!_ After
this I fell asleep, which I found had much refreshed me when I awaked. I
fell fast asleep a second time, and fell into this strange and terrible
sort of dream.

Methought I was sitting on the same spot of ground at the outside of the
wall where I sat when the storm blew after the earthquake; and that I
saw a man descending from a great black cloud, and alight upon the
ground. He was all over as bright as a flash of fire that a little
before surrounded him; his countenance inconceivably terrible; the earth
as it were trembled when he stept upon the ground, and flashes of fire
seemed to fill all the air. No sooner I thought him landed upon the
earth, but with a long spear, or other weapon, he made towards me; but
first ascending a rising ground, his voice added to my amazement, when I
thought I heard him pronounce these dreadful words, _Unhappy wretch!
seeing all these things have not brought thee to repentance, thou shalt
immediately die._ In pronouncing this dreadful sentence, I thought he
went to kill me with the spear that was in his hand.

Any body may think it impossible for me to express the horrors of my
mind at this vision: and even when I awaked, this very dream made a deep
impression upon my mind. The little divine knowledge I had, I received
from my father's instructions, and that was worn out by an uninterrupted
series of sea-faring impiety for eight years space. Except what sickness
forced from me, I do not remember I had one thought of lifting up my
heart towards God, but rather had a certain stupidity of soul, not
having the least sense or fear of the Omnipotent Being when in distress,
nor of gratitude to him for his deliverances. Nay, when I was on the
desperate expedition on the desert African shore, I cannot remember I
had one thought of what would become of me, or to beg his consolation
and assistance in my sufferings and distress. When the Portugal captain
took me up and honorably used me, nay, farther, when I was even
delivered from drowning by escaping to this island, I never looked upon
it as a judgment, but only said I was an unfortunate dog, and that's
all. Indeed some secret transports of soul I had, which was not through
grace but only a common flight of joy, that I was yet alive, when my
companions were all drowned, and no other joy could I conceive but what
is common with the sailors over a bowl of punch, after they have escaped
the greatest dangers.

The likelihood of wanting for neither food nor conveniences, might have
called upon me for a thankful acknowledgment to Providence. Indeed, the
growth of my corn touched with some sense, but that soon wore off again.
The terrible earthquake pointed to me, as it were, the finger of God,
but my dreadful amazement continued no longer than its duration. But
now, when my spirits began to sink under the burden of a strong
distemper, and I could leisurely view the miseries of death present
themselves before my eyes, then my awakened conscience began to reproach
me with my past life, in which I had so wickedly provoked the justice of
God to pour down his vengeance upon me.

Such reflections as these oppressed me even in the violence of
distemper. Some prayers I uttered, which only proceeded from the fear of
death. But when I considered my father's advice and prophecy, I could
not forbear weeping; for he told me, _That if I did persist in my folly,
I should not only be deprived of God's blessing, but have time enough to
reflect upon my despising his instructions, and this, in a wretched
time, when none could help me_. And now concluding it to be fulfilled,
having no soul in the island to administer any comfort to me, I prayed
earnestly to the Lord, that he would help me in this great calamity. And
this, I think, was the first time I prayed in sincerity for many years.
But now I must return to my journal.

_June_ 28. Something refreshed with sleep, and the fit quite off, I got
up. My dream still occasioned in me a great consternation; and, fearing
that the ague might return the succeeding day, I concluded it time to
get something to comfort me. I filled a case bottle with water, and set
it within reach of my bed; and, to make it more nourishing and less
chilly, I put some rum in it. The next thing I did was to broil me a
piece of goat's flesh, of which I ate but little. I was very weak;
however, walked about, dreading the return of my distemper; and at night
I supped on three of the turtle's eggs, which I roasted and ate, begging
God's blessing therewith.

After I had eaten, I attempted to walk again out of doors with my gun;
but was so weak, that I sat down, and looked at the sea, which was
smooth and calm. While I continued here, these thoughts came into
my mind.

In what manner is the production of the earth and sea, of which I have
seen so much? From whence came myself, and all other creatures living,
and of what are they made?

Our beings were assuredly created by some almighty invisible Power, who
framed the earth the sea, and air, and all therein. But what is
that Power?

Certainly it must follow that God has created it all. Yet, said I, if
God has made all this he must be the Ruler of them all, and what is
relating thereto; for certainly the Power that makes, must indisputably
have a power to guide and direct them. And if this be so, (as certainly
it must) nothing can happen without his knowledge and appointment. Then,
surely, if nothing happens without God's appointment, certainly God has
appointed these my sufferings to befal me. And here I fixed my firm
belief that it was his will that it should be so; and then proceeded to
enquire, why should God deal with me in this manner? Or what have I done
thus to deserve his indignation.

Here conscience flew in my face, reprehending me as a blasphemer; crying
with a loud and piercing voice, _Unworthy wretch! how dare you ask what
you have done? Look on your past life, and see what you have left
undone? Ask thyself, why thou wert not long ago in the merciless hands
of death? Why not drowned in Yarmouth roads, or killed in the fight,
when the ship was taken by the Sallee man of war? Why not entombed in
the bowels of wild beasts on the African coast, or drowned here when all
thy companions suffered shipwreck in the ocean._

Struck dumb with these reflections, I rose up in a pensive manner, being
so thoughtful that I could not go to sleep; and fearing the dreadful
return of my distemper, it caused me to remember, that the Brazilians
use tobacco for almost all diseases. I then went to my chest in older to
find some, where Heaven, no doubt, directed me to find a cure for both
soul and body; for there I found one of the Bibles, which, till this
time, I had neither leisure nor inclination to look into, I took both
the tobacco and that out of the chest, and laid them on the table.
Several experiments did I try with the tobacco: First, I took a piece or
leaf, and chewed it; but it being very green and strong, almost
stupified me. Next I steeped it in some rum an hour or two, resolving
when I went to bed to take a dole of it: and, in the third place, I
burnt some over a pan of fire, holding my nose over it as long as I
could endure it without suffocation.

In the intervals of this operation, though my head was giddy and
disturbed by the tobacco, I took up the Bible to read. No sooner did I
open it, but there appeared to me these words _Call on me in the day of
trouble, and I will deliver thee, and thou shall glorify me_.

At first this sentence made a very deep impression on my heart, but it
soon wore off again, when I considered the word _deliver_ was foreign to
me. And as the children of Israel said, when they were promised flesh to
eat, _Can God spread a table in the wilderness?_ in like manner I began
to say, _Can God himself deliver me from this desolate island?_ However,
the words would still return to my mind, and afterwards made a greater
impression upon me. As it was now very late, and the tobacco had dazed
my head, I was inclined to sleep: but before I would lie down I fell on
my knees, and implored the promise that God had made to me in the Holy
Scriptures, that _if I called upon him in the day of trouble he would
deliver me._ With much difficulty I afterwards drank the rum wherein I
had steeped the tobacco, which flying into my head, threw me into such a
profound sleep, that it was three o'clock the next day before I awaked;
or rather, I believe, I slept two days, having certainly lost a day in
my account, and I could never tell any other way. When I got up, my
spirits were lively and cheerful; my stomach much better, being very
hungry; and, in short, no fit returned the next day, which was the 29th,
but I found myself much altered for the better.

The 30th, I went abroad with my gun, but not far, and killed a sea-fowl
or two, resembling a brand goose, which, however, I cared not to eat
when I brought them home, but dined on two more of the turtle's eggs. In
the evening I renewed my medicine, excepting that I did not take so
large a quantity, neither did I chew the leaf, or hold my head over the
smoke: but the next day, which was the 1st of _July_, having a little
return of the cold fit, I again took my medicine as I did the
first time.

_July_ 3. The fit quite left me, but very weak. In this condition, I
often thought of these words, _I will deliver thee_; and while, at some
times, I would think of the impossibility of it, other thoughts would
reprehend me for disregarding the deliverances I had received, even from
the most forlorn and distressed condition. I asked myself, what regard
have I had to God for his abundant mercies? Have I done my part_: He has
delivered me, but I have not glorified him:_--as if I had said, I had
not owned and been thankful for these as deliverances, and how could I
expect greater? So much did this sensibly touch my heart, that I gave
God thanks for my recovery from weakness in the most humble prostration.

_July_ 4. This morning I began seriously to ponder on what is written in
the New Testament, resolving to read a chapter every morning and night
as long an my thoughts would engage me. As soon as I set about this work
seriously, I found my heart deeply affected with the impiety of my past
life; these words that I thought were spoken to me in my dream revived,
_All these things have not brought thee to repentance._ After this, I
begged of God to assist me with his Holy Spirit in returning to my duty.
One day in perusing the Scriptures, I came to these words, _He is
exalted a Prince and a Saviour, to give repentance and to give
remission_: Immediately I laid down the book, and with uplifted hands to
Heaven, loudly cried, _O blessed Jesus, thou son of David, Jesus, thou
exalted Prince and Saviour, give we repentance!_ And now indeed I prayed
with a true sense of my condition, and a more certain hope, founded on
the word of God. Now I had a different sense of these words, _Call on me
and I will deliver thee_, that is from the dreadful load of guilt which
oppressed my sinful soul, and not from a solitary life, which might
rather be called, a blessing, seeing I wanted neither food nor raiment,
when compared living amongst the human race, surrounded with so much
oppression, misery, and affliction; in a word, I came to this
conclusion, that a deliverance from sin was a much greater blessing,
than a deliverance from affliction. But again I proceed to my journal.

To the 14th of _July_, I walked about with my gun, little and little at
a time, having been reduced to the greatest extremity of weakness. The
applications and experiments I used were perfectly new: neither could I
recommend them to any one's practice. For though it carried off the fit,
it very much weakened me, and I had frequently convulsions in my nerves
and limbs for some time. From this I learned, that going abroad in rainy
weather, especially when it was attended with storms and hurricanes of
wind, was most pernicious to health. I had now been about ten months in
the island; and as I never had seen any of the human kind, I therefore
accounted myself as sole monarch; and as I grew better, having secured
my habitation to my mind, I resolved to make a tour round my kingdom, in
order to make new discoveries.

The 15th of _July_, I began my journey; I first went to the creek, where
I had brought my rafts on shore; and travelling farther, found the tide
went no higher than two miles up, where there was a little brook of
running water, on the banks of which were many pleasant savannahs or
meadows, plain, smooth, and covered with grass. On the rising parts,
where I supposed the water did not reach, I perceived a great deal of
tobacco growing to a very strong stalk. Several other plants I likewise
found, the virtues of which I did not understand. I searched a long time
for the Cassava root, which I knew the Indians in that climate made
their bread of, but all in vain. There were several plants of aloes,
though at that time I knew not what they were; likewise I saw several
sugar canes, but imperfect for want of cultivation. With these few
discoveries, I came back that night, and slept contentedly in my
little castle.

The next day, being the 16th, going the same way, but farther then the
day before, I found the country more adorned with woods and trees. Here
I perceived different fruits in great abundance. Melons in plenty lay on
the ground, and clusters of grapes, ripe and very rich, spread over the
trees. You may imagine I was glad of this discovery, yet ate very
sparingly, lest I should throw myself into a flux or fever. The grapes I
found of excellent use; for when I had dried them in the sun, which
preserved them as dried raisins are kept, they proved very wholesome and
nourishing, and served me in those seasons when no grapes were to
be had.

The night drawing on apace, I ascended up a tree, and slept very
comfortably, though it was the first time I had lain out of my
habitation. And when the morning came, I proceeded with great pleasure
on my way, travelling about four miles, as I imagined, by the length of
the valley, directing my course northward, there being a ridge of hills
on the south and north side of me. At the end of this valley, I came to
an opening, where the country seemed to descend to the west; there I
found a little spring of fresh water, proceeding out of the side of the
hill, with its chrystal streams running directly east. And, indeed, here
my senses were charmed with the most beautiful landscape nature could
afford; for the country appeared flourishing, green, and delightful,
that to me it seemed like a planted garden. I then descended on the side
of that delicious vale, when I found abundance of cocoa, orange, lemon,
and citron trees, but very wild and barren at that time. As for the
limes, they were delightful and wholesome, the juice of which I after
used to mix in water, which made it very cooling and refreshing. And now
I was resolved to carry home and lay up a store of grapes, limes, and
lemons, against the approaching wet season. So laying them up in
separate parcels, and then taking a few of each with me, I returned to
my little castle, after having spent three days in this journey. Before
I got home, the grapes were so bruised that they were utterly spoiled;
the limes indeed were good, but of those I could bring only a few.

_July 19_. Having prepared two bags, I returned thither again, but, to
my great surprise, found all the grapes spread about, trod to pieces,
and abundance eaten, which made me conclude there were wild beasts
thereabouts. To prevent this happening again, I gathered a large
quantity of the grapes, and hung them upon the out branches of the tree,
both to keep them unhurt, and that they might cure and dry in the sun;
and having well loaded myself with limes and lemons, I returned once
more to my old place of residence.

And now contemplating on the fruitfulness of this valey, and
pleasantness of its situation, its security from storms, and the
delightfulness of the adjacent woods, I concluded I was settled in the
worst part of the country, and therefore was thinking to remove my

But when I considered again, that though it was pleasant, it was off
from the sea-side, where there was a possibility, some time or other, a
ship might either be driven or sail by; and that to inclose myself among
hills and woods must certainly put an end to my hopes of deliverance; I
resolved to let my castle remain where Providence had first assigned it.
Yet so ravished was I with this place, that I made me a little kind of
bower, surrounding it with a double hedge, as high as I could reach,
well staked and filled with bullrushes: and having spent a great part of
the month of _July_, I think it was the first of _August_ before I began
to enjoy my labour.

_Aug. 3._ Perceiving my grapes to be dry, I took them from the trees,
and they proved excellent good raisins of the sun: the most of which I
carried to my cave; and happy for me I did so; by which I saved the best
part of my winter food.

_Aug_. 14. This day it began to rain; and though I had made me a tent
like the other, yet having no shelter of a hill to keep me from storms,
nor a cave behind me to retreat to, I was obliged to return to my old
castle. The rain continued more or less every day, till the middle of
_October;_ and sometimes so violently, that I could not stir out of my
cave for several days. This season I found my family to increase; for
one of my cats that ran away from me, and which I thought had been dead,
returned about _August_, with three kittens at her heels, like herself,
which I thought strange, because both my cats were females, and the wild
cats of the island seemed to be of a different kind from our European
cats; but from these cats proceeded such numbers, that I was forced to
kill and destroy them as I would do wild beasts and vermin.

To the 26th of this month, I could not stir out, it raining incessantly;
when beginning to want food, I was compelled to venture twice, the first
of which I shot a goat, and afterwards found a very large tortoise. The
manner of my regulating my food was thus: a bunch of raisins served me
for my breakfast; a piece of goat's flesh or turtle boiled for my
dinner, and two or three turtle's eggs for my supper. While the rain
lasted, I daily worked two or three hours at enlarging my cave, and by
degrees worked it on towards one side, till I came to the outside of the
hill, and made a door or way out, which came beyond my fence or wall,
and so I came in and out this way. But after I had done this, I was
troubled to see myself thus exposed; though I could not perceive any
thing to fear, a goat being the biggest creature I had seen upon
this island.

_Sept_. 30. Casting up my notches on my post, which amounted to 365, I
concluded this to be the anniversary of my landing; and, therefore,
humbly prostrating myself on the ground, confessing my sins,
acknowledging God's righteous judgments upon me, and praying to Jesus
Christ to have mercy upon me, I fasted for twelve hours till the going
down of the sun; and then eating a biscuit and a bunch of grapes, laid
me on the bed, and with great comfort took my night's repose. Till this
time I never had distinguished the Sabbath-day; but now made a longer
notch than ordinary for the days of rest, and divided the weeks as well
as I could, though I found I had lost a day or two in my account. My ink
failing soon after, I omitted in my daily memorandum things of an
indifferent nature, & contented myself to write down only the most
remarkable events of my life. The rainy and dry seasons appeared now
regular to me, and experience taught me how to provide for them; yet, in
one thing I am going to relate, my experience very much failed me. You
may call to mind what I have mentioned of some barley and rice which I
had saved; about thirty stalks of the former, and twenty of the latter;
and at that time, the sun being in its southern position, going from
me, together with the rains, made me conclude it a very proper season to
sow it. Accordingly I dug up a piece of ground, with my wooden spade,
and dividing it into two parts, sowed about two thirds of my seed,
preserving by me about a handful of each. And happy it was I did so; for
no rains falling, it was choaked up, and never appeared above the earth
till the wet season came again, and then part of it grew, as if it had
been newly sown.

I was resolved all to make another trial; and seeking for a moister
piece of ground near my bower, I there sowed the rest of my seed in
February, a little before the vernal equinox; which having the rainy
months of March and April to water it, yielded a noble crop, and sprang
up very pleasantly. I had still saved part of the seed, not daring to
venture all; and by the time I found out the proper seasons to sow it
in, and that I might expect every year two seed-times and two harvests,
my stock amounted to above half a peck of each sort of grain.

No sooner were the rains over, but the stakes which I had cut from the
trees, shot out like willows the first year after lopping their heads. I
was ignorant of the tree I cut them from; but they grew so regularly
beautiful, that they made a most lively appearance, and so flourished in
three year's time, that I resolved to cut more of them; and these soon
growing made a glorious fence, as afterwards I shall observe.

And now I perceived that the seasons of the year might generally be
divided, not into summer and winter, as in Europe, but into wet and dry
seasons, as in this manner:

/ February,\
Half< March, > Rainy, sun coming near the Equinox.
\ April, /

/ April, \
| May, |
Half< June, > Dry, sun getting north of the Line.
| July, |
\ August, /

/ August, \
Half< September, > Wet, the sun being then come back.
\ October, /

/ October, \
| November, |
Half< December, > Dry, sun running south of the Line.
| January, |
\ February, /

The wet seasons would continue longer or shorter, as the winds happened
to blow. But having found the ill consequences of being abroad in the
rain, I took care beforehand to furnish myself with provisions; and
during the wet months sat within doors as much as possible. At this time
I contrived to make many things that I wanted, though it cost me much
labour and pains, before I could accomplish them. The first I tried was
to make a basket; but all the twigs I could get proved so brittle, that
I could not then perform it. It now proved of great advantage to me that
when a boy, I took great delight in standing at a basket-maker's in the
same town where my father lived, to view them at work; and like other
boys, curious to see the manner of their working these things and very
officious to assist, I perfectly learned the method of it, and wanted
nothing but the tools. And it coming into my mind that the twigs of that
tree of which I made my stakes, might be as tough as a fallow willow, or
osiers, growing in England, I resolved to make an experiment, and went
the next day to my country-seat, and found some fit for my turn; and
after cutting down a quantity with my hatchet, I dried them in my pale,
and, when fit to work with, carried them to my cave, where I employed
myself in making several sorts of baskets, insomuch that I could put in
whatsoever I pleased. It is true, they were not cleverly made, yet they
served my turn upon all occasions.

But still I wanted two necessary things. I had no cask to hold my
liquor, except two rundlets almost full of rum, a few bottles of an
ordinary size, and some square case bottles, neither had I a pot to boil
any thing in, only a large kettle unfit to make broth, or stew a bit of
meat: I wanted, likewise at the beginning of this dry season a tobacco
pipe; but for this I afterwards found an expedient.

I kept myself employed in planting my second row of stakes, But
remembering that when I travelled up to the brook, I had a mind to see
the whole island, I now resumed my intention, and taking my dog, gun,
hatchet, two biscuit cakes, a great bunch of raisins, with a larger
quantity of powder and shot than usual, I began my journey. Having
passed the vale where my bower stood, I came within view of the sea
lying to the west when it being a clear day, I fairly descried land,
extending from the W. to the S.W. about ten or fifteen leagues, as I
concluded; but could not say whether it was an island or a
continent.--Neither could I tell what this place might be; only thought
it was part of America, & where I might have been in a miserable
condition, had I landed. Again I considered that if this was the Spanish
coast, certainly, one time or other, I should see some ship pass by; and
if it was not, then it must be the savage coast, between the Spanish
country and Brazil, which abounds with cannibals or man-eaters.

As I proceeded forward I found this side of the island much more
pleasant than mine; the fields fragrant adorned with sweet flowers &
verdant grass, together with several very, fine woods. There were
parrots in plenty, which made me long for one to be my companion; but
it was with great difficulty I could knock one down with my stick; and I
kept him at home some years before I could get him to call me by
my name.

In the low grounds, I found various sorts of hares and foxes, as I took
them to be, but much different from those in England. Several of these I
killed, but never ate them; neither indeed had I any occasion; for
abounding with goats, pigeons, turtle, and grapes, I could defy
Leadenhall market to furnish me a better table. In this journey I did
not travel above two miles a-day, because I took several turns and
windings, to see what discoveries I could make, returning weary enough
to the place where I designed to rest all night, which was either in a
tree, or in a place which I surrounded with stakes, that no wild
creature might suddenly surprise me. When I came to the sea shore, I was
amazed to see the splendour of it. Its strand was covered with shells of
the most beautiful fish, and constantly abounding with innumerable
turtles, and fowls of many kinds, which I was ignorant of, except those
called penguins. I might have shot as many as I pleased, but was sparing
of my ammunition, rather choosing to kill a she-goat, which I did with
much difficulty, on account of the flatness of the country.

Now though this journey produced me the most pleasing satisfaction, yet
my habitation was so much to my liking, that I did not repine at my
being seated on the worst part of the island. I continued my journey,
travelling about twelve miles further towards the east, where I set a
great pile on the shore for a mark, concluding that my next journey
should bring me to the other side of the island, east from my castle,
and so round till I came to my post again. As I had a constant view of
the country, I thought I could not miss my way; but scarce had I
travelled three miles, when I descended into a very large valley, so
surrounded with hills covered with wood, that I having no guide but the
sun, nor even this, unless I knew will the position of the sun at the
time of day; and to add to my misfortune, the weather proving very hazy,
I was obliged to return to my post by the sea-side, and so backwards the
same way I came. In this journey my dog surprised a kid and would have
killed it, had I not prevented him. As I had often been thinking of
getting a kid or two, and so raising a breed of tame goats to supply me
after my ammunition was spent, I took this opportunity of beginning: and
having made a collar for this little creature, with a string made of
rope-yarn, I brought it to my bower, and there inclosed and left him;
and, having spent a month in this journey, at length I returned to my

Nobody can doubt of my satisfaction, when I returned to my little
castle, and reposed myself in my hammock. After my journey I rested
myself a week, which time I employed in, making a cage for my pretty
Poll. I now began to consider the poor kid I had left in the bower, and
I immediately went to fetch it home. When I came there I found the young
creature almost starved; I gave it some food, and tied it as before: but
there was no occasion, for it followed me like a dog; and, as I
constantly fed it, it became so loving, gentle, and fond, that it
commenced one of my domestics, and would never leave me.

The rainy season of the autumnal equinox being now come, I kept the 30th
of September in the most solemn manner, as usual, it being the third
year of my abode in the island. I spent the whole day in acknowledging
God's mercies, in giving him thanks for making this solitary life as
agreeable, and less sinful, than that of human society; and for the
communications of his grace to my soul, in supporting, comforting, and
encouraging me to depend, upon his Providence, and hope for his eternal
presence in the world to come.

Indeed, I often did consider how much more happy I was in this fate of
life, than in that accursed manner of living formerly used; and
sometimes when hunting, or viewing the country, the anguish of my soul
would break out upon me, and my very heart would sink within me, to
think of the woods, the mountains, the desarts I was in; and how I was a
prisoner locked up within the eternal bars and bolts of the ocean, in an
uninhabited wilderness, without hopes, and without redemption: In this
condition I would often wring my hands, and weep like a child: And even
sometimes, in the middle of my work, this fit would take me; and then I
would sit down and sigh, looking on the ground for an hour or two
together, till such time as my grief got vent in a flood of tears.

One morning as I was sadly employed in this manner, I opened my Bible,
when I immediately fixed my eyes upon these words, _I will never leave
thee, nor forsake thee!_ Surely, thought I, these words are directed to
me, or else why should they appear just at a moment when I am bemoaning
my forlorn condition? and if God does not forsake, what matters it,
since he can me more happy in this state of life, than if I enjoyed the
greatest splendour in the world? But while I was going to return God
thanks for my present state, something seemed to shock my mind, as if it
had thus said: _Unworthy wretch; can you pretend to be thankful for a
condition, from which you would pray to be delivered_? Therefore I
stopt:--and tho' I could not say, I thanked the Divine Majesty for
being there, yet I gave God thanks for placing in my view my former
course of life, and granting me a true knowledge of repentance. And
whenever I opened or read the Bible, I blessed kind Providence, that
directed my good friend in England to send it among my goods without
any order, and for assisting me to save it from the power of the
raging ocean.

And now beginning my third year, my several daily employments were
these: _First_, My duty to Heaven, and diligently reading the Holy
Scriptures, which I did twice or thrice every day: _Secondly_, Seeking
provision with my gun, which commonly took me up, when it did not rain,
three hours every morning: _Thirdly_, The ordering, curing, preserving,
and cooking what I killed, or catched for my supply which took me up
great part of the day: for, in the middle of the day, the sun being in
its height, it was so hot, that I could not stir out; so that I had only
but four hours in the evening to work in: and then the want of tools, of
assistance, and skill, wasted a great deal of time to little purpose. I
was no less than two and forty days making a board fit for a long shelf,
which two sawyers with their tools and saw-pit, would have cut off the
same tree in half a day. It was a large tree, as my board was to be
broad. I was three days in cutting it down and two more in lopping off
the boughs, and reducing it to a piece of timber. This I hacked and
hewed off each side, till it became light to move; then I turned it,
made one side of is smooth and flat as a board from end to end, then
turned it downward, cutting the other side, till I brouht the plank to
be about three inches thick, and smooth on both sides. Any body may
judge my great labour and fatigue in such a piece of work; but this I
went through with patience, as also many other things that my
circumstances made necessary for me to do.

The harvest months, November and December, were now at hand, in which I
had the pleasing prospect of a very good crop. But here I met with a new
problem; for the goats and hares, having tasted of the outshoot of the
blade, kept it to short that it had not strengthen to shoot up into a
stalk. To prevent this, I enclosed it with a hedge, and by day shot some
of its devourers; and my dog which I had tied to the field-gate, keeping
barking all night; so frightened those creatures, that I got entirely
rid of them.

But no sooner did I get rid of these, than other enemies appeared, to
wit, whole flocks of several sorts of birds, who only waited till my
back was turned, to ruin me: so much did this provoke me, that I let
fly, and killed three of the malefactors; and afterwards served them as
they do notorious thieves in England, hung them up in chains as a terror
to others. And, indeed, to good an effect had this that they not only
forsook the corn, but all that part of the island, so long as these
criminals hung there.

My corn having ripened apace, the latter end of December, which was my
second harvest, I reaped it with a scythe, made of one of my broad
swords. I had no fatigue in cutting down my my first crop it was so
slender. The ears I carried home in a basket, rubbing it with my hands,
instead of threshing it: and when the harvest was over, found my half
peck of seed produced near two bushels of rice, and two bushels and a
half of barley. And now I plainly foresaw, that by God's goodness, I
should be furnished with bread; but yet I was concerned, because I knew
not how to grind or make meal of my corn, nor bread, neither knew how to
bake it. I would not however, taste any of the crop, but resolved to
preserve it against next season, and, in the mean while, use my best
endeavours to provide myself with other food.

But where were my labours to end? The want of a plough to turn up the
earth, or shovel to dig it, I conquered by making me a wooden spade. The
want of a harrow I supplied myself, with dragging over the corn a great
bough of a tree. When it was growing I was forced to fence it; when ripe
to mow it, carry it home, thrash it, part it from the chaff, and save
it. And, after all, I wanted a mill to grind it, sieve to dress it, yest
and salt to make it into bread, and an oven to bake it. This set my
brains to work to find some expedient for every one of these necessaries
against the next harvest.

And now having more seed, my first care was to prepare me more land. I
pitched upon two large flat pieces of ground near my castle, for that
purpose, in which sowed my seed, and fenced it with a good hedge. This
took me up three months: by which time the wet season coming on, and the
rain keeping me within doors, I found several occasions to employ
myself; and, while at work, used to divert myself in talking to my
parrot, learning him to know and speak his own name _Poll_ the first
welcome word I ever heard spoke in the island. I had been a long time in
contriving how to make earthen vessels, which I wanted extremely; and
when I considered the heat of the climate, I did not doubt but if I
could find any such clay, I might botch up a pot, strong enough, when
dried in the sun, to bear handling, and to hold any thing that was dry,
as corn, meal, and other things.

To be short, the clay I found; but it would occasion the most serious
person to smile, to see what aukward ways I took, and what ugly
misshapen things I made; how many either fell out or cracked by the
violent heat of the sun, and fell in pieces when they were removed; so
that I think it was two months time before I could perfect any thing:
and even then but two clumsy things in imitation of earthen jars. These,
however, I very gently placed in wicker baskets, made on purpose for
them, and between the pot and the baskets, stuffed it full of rice and
barley straw, and these I presume would hold my dried corn, and perhaps
the meal when the corn was bruised. As for the smaller thing, I made
them with better success, such as little round pots, flat dishes,
pitchers, and pipkins, the fun baking them very hard.

Yet still I wanted one thing absolutely necessary, and that was an
earthen pot, not only to hold my liquid, but also to bear the fire,
which none of these could do. It once happened that as I was putting out
my fire, I found therein a broken piece of one of my vessels burnt as
hard as a rock, and red as a tile. This made me think of burning some
pots; and having no notion of a kiln, or of glazing them with leaf, I
fixed three large pipkins, and two or three pots in a pile one upon
another. The fire I piled round the outside, and dry wood on the top,
till I saw the pots in the inside red hot, and found out that, they were
net crackt at all: and when I perceived them perfectly red, I let one of
them stand in the fire about five or six hours, till the clay melted by
the extremity of the heat, and would have run to glass, had I suffered
it; upon which I slacked my fire by degrees, till the redness abated;
and watching them till the morning, I found I had three very good
pipkins, and two earthen pots, as well burnt and fit for my turn as I
could desire.

No joy could be greater than mine at this discovery. For after this, I
may say, I wanted for no fort of earthen ware. I filled one of my
pipkins with water to boil me some meat, which it did admirably well,
and with a piece of kid I made me some good broth, as well as my
circumstances would afford me at that time.

The next concern I had was to get me a stone-morter to beat some corn
in, instead of a mill to grind it. Here indeed I was at a great loss, as
not being fit for a stone-cutter; and many days I spent to find out a
great stone big enough to cut hollow and make fit for a morter, and
strong enough to bear the weight of a pestil, and that would break the
corn without filling it with sand. But all the stones of the island
being of a mouldering nature, rendered my search fruitless; and then I
resolved to look out for a great block of hard wood, which having found,
I formed it with my ax and hammer, and then, with infinite labour, made
a hollow in it, just as the Indians of Brazil make their canoes. When I
had finished this, I made a great pestil of iron wood, and then laid
them up against my succeeding harvest.

My next business was to make me a sieve, to sift my meal and part it
from the bran and husk. Having no fine thin canvas to search the meal
through, I could not tell what to do. What linen I had was reduced to
rags: I had goat's hair, enough, but neither tools to work it, nor did I

Book of the day: