Robinson Crusoes saviours 300-year-old journal discovered

January 6th, 2009 - 1:25 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Jan 6 (ANI): A 300-year-old journal of a British explorer who defeated pirates of the Caribbean and rescued real-life Robinson Crusoe has been unearthed and is expected to fetch 3,000 pounds at an auction.

It will go under the hammer on January 21.

The swashbuckling privateer Capt Woodes Rogers, who left the English shore in 1708, left a very rare account in records of his three-year, round-the-world voyage. He made his fortune by raiding pirate ships, reports the Telegraph.

Rogers made a fortune pillaging from pirate ships and Spanish galleons.

While on that journey, Rogers, who was a friend of the author Daniel Defoe, even stopped off at a remote Pacific island and found castaway Alexander Selkirk, who inspired the character and book Robinson Crusoe.

He said he found him “wild-looking” and wearing “goatskins”, adding: “He had with him his clothes and bedding, with a firelock, some powder, bullets and tobacco, a hatchet, a knife, a kettle, a Bible and books.”

Commanding two 36-gun ships, the Duke and the Duchess, and 333 men, he sailed the South Seas, the East Indies and the Cape of Good Hope, going about his task with great gusto.

His catches include the prized vessel The Great Manila, a Spanish trading ship that sailed across the Pacific with a valuable cargo, including precious stones and exotic silks worth 2 million dollars.

He was appointed the governor of the Behamas by King George I in 1717, and played a major role in ridding the islands of 2,000 pirates, including Edward Teach, also called Blackbeard. He was pursued by Rogers” forces and killed.

It is believed that only a hundred copies of his book, A Cruising Voyage Around the World, were printed seven years after Rogers completed his odyssey. One was recently found in a loft in Bristol, where Rogers” was based. (ANI)

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