jueves, 8 de marzo de 2012

Questions about Gulliver, by Mercedes Martín

1.- What was Gulliver recommended to do by Mr. Bates?
After studying in Leyden, Holland, Gulliver returned to England, where his master, Mr. Bates recommended him to be surgeon to the ship Swallow. And he continued making voyages into the Levant during three years and a half.
When he went back, he resolved to settle in London; to which his master encouraged him. Bates also recommended him to several patients. He took part of a small house in the old Jewy. And being advised to marry, he did so to Mrs. Mary Burton.
Nevertheless after two years his master died, and his business starts to fail. Therefore he determined to go to the sea, was surgeon successively in two ships, and made several voyages for six years. During the travels he read many books, and when he was ashore he observed dispositions of the people, as well as he learned their languages.
2.- Could you find the exact date when Gulliver took shipping in the Downs?
The 20th day of June1702, two months after Gulliver retuned from his first voyage, he left again his native country and took shipping in the Downs, in The Adventure.
They wintered at the Cape of Good Hope, for they discovered a leak and their captain felt sick of an ague, and they couldn’t leave till March. When they were by the Strait of Madagascar they encountered a southern wind, called the southern monsoon, and a great storm followed by a strong wind west-south-west, , which drew the ship off course. When a long boat was sent to fetch water, Gulliver was left on shore, and seized by one of the giant natives, who carried him to a giant farmer’s house. That is how Gulliver discovered the land of the Brobdingnagians.
3.- In which voyage was Gulliver taken by pirates?
Soon after the third Gulliver’s travel had started, his ship was attacked by pirates. One of them spoke Dutch, and the other was Japanese. The Japanese pirate told them they will not die, but the Dutchman pirate punished Gulliver for talking him back by sending him out to sea in a small boat with only four days worth of food.
That was when Gulliver discovered Laputa, the floating island. The inhabitants lower the island and invited Gulliver to visit the country. Gulliver found out that Laputants had servants who struck the ear of the listeners and the mouth of the speakers with a flapper during the conversation, in order to prevent their master minds from wandering off. When the king decided to punish a particular region of the country, Laputans moved the island over it and kept it above it, depriving the lands below of sun and rain. They were also used to hear the music of the spheres, but were very bad reasoning..
Gulliver visited the academy of Lagado, where the people were only interested on music, mathematics and speculations on nonsense experiments, but he got bored and wanted to go back to England.
4.- How can the towns of Maldonado and Portsmouth be said to be similar?
Both Maldonada and Portsmouth are port cities, and pretty much the same size, so it is easy to find some acquaintance and though receive good hospitality, as Gulliver did when he got to Maldonada. There he was advised to go to Glubbdubdrib, the island of the magicians, where Gulliver was able to talk to the spirits of dead people like Hannival, Caesar, Aristotle and Descartes, as the emperor of Gubbdubdribhad had skills in necromancy. Then Gulliver returned to Maldonada again and sailed to the kingdom of Luggnagg, where lived some immortal people, called the Struldbrugs. The immortals became more unhappy, envious and sad as they got older. Gulliver refused a job to stay in Lugganagg, and left the country.
5.- What nationality was the ship Gulliver returned to Amsterdam in?
Gulliver left Luggnagg with a lot of large pieces of gold, real diamonds and a letter of recommendation from the king to the emperor of Japan. Gulliver hoped to get the opportunity of returning into Europe in a Dutch ship. So he pretended to be a Dutch merchant, shipwrecked in a very remote country. However he asked the emperor to be excused of performing the ceremony imposed in his countrymen, of trampling upon the crucifix, as he had been thrown into his kingdom by his misfortunes, without any intention of trading. The emperor suspected he must be a Christian, nevertheless thanks to the letter, he told the officers to keep the secret, as if he were discovered by the Dutch, they would cut his throat during the voyage.
6.- What does the word Houyhnhnm mean?
The Houyhnhnm was a race of horses endowed with reason, which ruled the Yahoos’ country, and were described in the fourth Gulliver’s travel.
After six months at home Gulliver set sail on The Adventure. When the sailors mutinied and became pirates left Gulliver ashore. It was then that he knew about the Yahoos, horrible human creatures, which had the worst vices of men, and are ruled by the horses. The horses thought Gulliver was a Yahoo, though superior to the rest of his specie.
Gulliver remained two years among these noble, intelligent horses, and told them about Europeans. Afterwards the master of Houyhnhnms got to the conclusion that the Europeans were not different from the Yahoos, and so did Gulliver.

Mercedes Martín, Advanced level . Year 2

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