Ed Pearce‘s Today’s Memory
Daniel Defoe’s The Life and Strange Adventures of Robinson Crusoe
Originally shared by Ed Pearce
Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe was published on April 25, 1719.
In 1719 Defoe decided to write a piece of fictitious journalism based on the true life castaway Andrew Selkirk at the time when his political reputation was sinking. Selkirk was 28 when his ship wrecked on one of the Juan Fernandez islands in the South Pacific in 1704 . He was stranded there for four years and was rescued from the island on February 2, 1709 by the terrifying pirate Thomas Dover who was homeward bound after some successful sacking and pillaging in Peru.
The book was titled Robinson Crusoe and Defoe wrote it at 95 Stoke Newington Street. London.It was published on April 25, 1719. Before the end of the year, this first volume had run through four editions.
Defoe was a zealous, evangelical Puritan. The book revealed Robinson Crusoe, even when marooned on a desert island, behaving in a prudent, hard-working Protestant manner, secure that despite the circumstances God was on his side.
Defoe met Alexander Selkirk, the real life castaway, in the Llandoger Trow pub in Bristol.
Its full title was The Life and Strange Surprising Adventures of Robinson Crusoe of York Mariner.
Defoe made his publishers a profit of over £1000 with the immediately successful Robinson Crusoe.
He wrote his follow up The Further Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, the month following the publication of the first volume. It was the first ever sequel to a novel. In 1720 Defoe wrote his second follow up Serious Reflections of Robinson Crusoe.