A Voyage To Lilliput

: The Blue Fairy Book


My father had a small estate in Nottinghamshire, and

I was the third of four sons. He sent me to Cambridge

at fourteen years old, and after studying there three

years I was bound apprentice to Mr. Bates, a famous

surgeon in London. There, as my father now and then

sent me small sums of money, I spent them in learning

navigation, and other arts useful to those who trave
, as

I always believed it would be some time or other my

fortune to do.

Three years after my leaving him my good master,

Mr. Bates, recommended me as ship's surgeon to the

"Swallow," on which I voyaged three years. When I

came back I settled in London, and, having taken part

of a small house, I married Miss Mary Burton, daughter

of Mr. Edmund Burton, hosier.

But my good master Bates died two years after; and

as I had few friends my business began to fail, and I

determined to go again to sea. After several voyages, I

accepted an offer from Captain W. Pritchard, master of

the "Antelope," who was making a voyage to the South

Sea. We set sail from Bristol, May 4, 1699; and our

voyage at first was very prosperous.

But in our passage to the East Indies we were driven

by a violent storm to the north-west of Van Diemen's

Land. Twelve of our crew died from hard labor and bad

food, and the rest were in a very weak condition. On the

5th of November, the weather being very hazy, the seamen

spied a rock within 120 yards of the ship; but the

wind was so strong that we were driven straight upon it,

and immediately split. Six of the crew, of whom I was

one, letting down the boat, got clear of the ship, and we

rowed about three leagues, till we could work no longer.

We therefore trusted ourselves to the mercy of the waves;

and in about half an hour the boat was upset by a sudden

squall. What became of my companions in the boat, or

those who escaped on the rock or were left in the vessel,

I cannot tell; but I conclude they were all lost. For my

part, I swam as fortune directed me, and was pushed forward

by wind and tide; but when I was able to struggle

no longer I found myself within my depth. By this time

the storm was much abated. I reached the shore at last,

about eight o'clock in the evening, and advanced nearly

half a mile inland, but could not discover any sign of

inhabitants. I was extremely tired, and with the heat of

the weather I found myself much inclined to sleep. I

lay down on the grass, which was very short and soft, and

slept sounder than ever I did in my life for about nine

hours. When I woke, it was just daylight. I attempted

to rise, but could not; for as I happened to be lying on my

back, I found my arms and legs were fastened on each

side to the ground; and my hair, which was long and

thick, tied down in the same manner. I could only look

upward. The sun began to grow hot, and the light hurt

my eyes. I heard a confused noise about me, but could

see nothing except the sky. In a little time I felt

something alive and moving on my left leg, which, advancing

gently over my breast, came almost up to my chin, when,

bending my eyes downward, I perceived it to be a human

creature, not six inches high, with a bow and arrow in his

hands, and a quiver at his back. In the meantime I felt

at least forty more following the first. I was in the

utmost astonishment, and roared so loud that they all ran

back in a fright; and some of them were hurt with the

falls they got by leaping from my sides upon the ground.

However, they soon returned, and one of them, who

ventured so far as to get a full sight of my face, lifted up

his hands in admiration. I lay all this while in great

uneasiness; but at length, struggling to get loose, I succeeded

in breaking the strings that fastened my left arm to the

ground; and at the same time, with a violent pull that

gave me extreme pain, I a little loosened the strings that

tied down my hair, so that I was just able to turn my

head about two inches. But the creatures ran off a second

time before I could seize them, whereupon there was a

great shout, and in an instant I felt above a hundred

arrows discharged on my left hand, which pricked me like

so many needles. Moreover, they shot another flight into

the air, of which some fell on my face, which I immediately

covered with my left hand. When this shower of arrows

was over I groaned with grief and pain, and then, striving

again to get loose, they discharged another flight of

arrows larger than the first, and some of them tried to

stab me with their spears; but by good luck I had on a

leather jacket, which they could not pierce. By this time

I thought it most prudent to lie still till night, when, my

left hand being already loose, I could easily free myself;

and as for the inhabitants, I thought I might be a match

for the greatest army they could bring against me if they

were all of the same size as him I saw. When the people

observed that I was quiet they discharged no more arrows,

but by the noise I heard I knew that their number was

increased; and about four yards from me, for more than

an hour, there was a knocking, like people at work. Then,

turning my head that way as well as the pegs and strings

would let me, I saw a stage set up, about a foot and a half

from the ground, with two or three ladders to mount it.

From this, one of them, who seemed to be a person of

quality, made me a long speech, of which I could not

understand a word, though I could tell from his manner

that he sometimes threatened me, and sometimes spoke

with pity and kindness. I answered in few words, but

in the most submissive manner; and, being almost famished

with hunger, I could not help showing my impatience

by putting my finger frequently to my mouth, to signify

that I wanted food. He understood me very well, and,

descending from the stage, commanded that several

ladders should be set against my sides, on which more

than a hundred of the inhabitants mounted, and walked

toward my mouth with baskets full of food, which had

been sent by the King's orders when he first received

tidings of me. There were legs and shoulders like mutton

but smaller than the wings of a lark. I ate them two or

three at a mouthful, and took three loaves at a time.

They supplied me as fast as they could, with a thousand

marks of wonder at my appetite. I then made a sign that

I wanted something to drink. They guessed that a small

quantity would not suffice me, and, being a most ingenious

people, they slung up one of their largest hogsheads,

then rolled it toward my hand, and beat out the top. I

drank it off at a draught, which I might well do, for it did

not hold half a pint. They brought me a second hogshead,

which I drank, and made signs for more; but they

had none to give me. However, I could not wonder

enough at the daring of these tiny mortals, who ventured

to mount and walk upon my body, while one of my hands

was free, without trembling at the very sight of so huge

a creature as I must have seemed to them. After some

time there appeared before me a person of high rank from

his Imperial Majesty. His Excellency, having mounted

my right leg, advanced to my face, with about a dozen

of his retinue, and spoke about ten minutes, often pointing

forward, which, as I afterward found, was toward the

capital city, about half a mile distant, whither it was

commanded by his Majesty that I should be conveyed.

I made a sign with my hand that was loose, putting it to

the other (but over his Excellency's head, for fear of

hurting him or his train), to show that I desired my

liberty. He seemed to understand me well enough, for he

shook his head, though he made other signs to let me

know that I should have meat and drink enough, and

very good treatment. Then I once more thought of

attempting to escape; but when I felt the smart of their

arrows on my face and hands, which were all in blisters

and observed likewise that the number of my enemies

increased, I gave tokens to let them know that they might

do with me what they pleased. Then they daubed my

face and hands with a sweet-smelling ointment, which in

a few minutes removed all the smarts of the arrows. The

relief from pain and hunger made me drowsy, and presently

I fell asleep. I slept about eight hours, as I was told

afterward; and it was no wonder, for the physicians, by

the Emperor's orders, had mingled a sleeping draught in

the hogsheads of wine.

It seems that, when I was discovered sleeping on the

ground after my landing, the Emperor had early notice

of it, and determined that I should be tied in the manner

I have related (which was done in the night, while I

slept), that plenty of meat and drink should be sent me,

and a machine prepared to carry me to the capital city.

Five hundred carpenters and engineers were immediately

set to work to prepare the engine. It was a frame of wood,

raised three inches from the ground, about seven feet long

and four wide, moving upon twenty-two wheels. But the

difficulty was to place me on it. Eighty poles were erected

for this purpose, and very strong cords fastened to

bandages which the workmen had tied round my neck, hands,

body, and legs. Nine hundred of the strongest men were

employed to draw up these cords by pulleys fastened on

the poles, and in less than three hours I was raised and

slung into the engine, and there tied fast. Fifteen hundred

of the Emperor's largest horses, each about four

inches and a half high, were then employed to draw me

toward the capital. But while all this was done I still lay

in a deep sleep, and I did not wake till four hours after we

began our journey.

The Emperor and all his Court came out to meet us

when we reached the capital; but his great officials would

not suffer his Majesty to risk his person by mounting on

my body. Where the carriage stopped there stood an

ancient temple, supposed to be the largest in the whole

kingdom, and here it was determined that I should lodge.

Near the great gate, through which I could easily creep,

they fixed ninety-one chains, like those which hang to a

lady's watch, which were locked to my left leg with

thirty-six padlocks; and when the workmen found it was

impossible for me to break loose, they cut all the strings

that bound me. Then I rose up, feeling as melancholy as

ever I did in my life. But the noise and astonishment of

the people on seeing me rise and walk were inexpressible.

The chains that held my left leg were about two yards

long, and gave me not only freedom to walk backward and

forward in a semicircle, but to creep in and lie at full

length inside the temple. The Emperor, advancing

toward me from among his courtiers, all most magnificently

clad, surveyed me with great admiration, but kept beyond

the length of my chain. He was taller by about the

breadth of my nail than any of his Court, which alone

was enough to strike awe into the beholders, and graceful

and majestic. The better to behold him, I lay down on

my side, so that my face was level with his, and he stood

three yards off. However, I have had him since many

times in my hand, and therefore cannot be deceived. His

dress was very simple; but he wore a light helmet of gold,

adorned with jewels and a plume. He held his sword

drawn in his hand, to defend himself if I should break

loose; it was almost three inches long, and the hilt was of

gold, enriched with diamonds. His voice was shrill, but

very clear. His Imperial Majesty spoke often to me, and

I answered; but neither of us could understand a word.


After about two hours the Court retired, and I was left

with a strong guard to keep away the crowd, some of

whom had had the impudence to shoot their arrows at me

as I sat by the door of my house. But the colonel ordered

six of them to be seized and delivered bound into my

hands. I put five of them into my coat pocket; and as to

the sixth, I made a face as if I would eat him alive. The

poor man screamed terribly, and the colonel and his

officers were much distressed, especially when they saw

me take out my penknife. But I soon set them at ease,

for, cutting the strings he was bound with, I put him

gently on the ground, and away he ran. I treated the rest

in the same manner, taking them one by one out of my

pocket; and I saw that both the soldiers and people were

delighted at this mark of my kindness.

Toward night I got with some difficulty into my house,

where I lay on the ground, as I had to do for a fortnight,

till a bed was prepared for me out of six hundred beds of

the ordinary measure.

Six hundred servants were appointed me, and three

hundred tailors made me a suit of clothes. Moreover, six

of his Majesty's greatest scholars were employed to teach

me their language, so that soon I was able to converse

after a fashion with the Emperor, who often honored me

with his visits. The first words I learned were to desire

that he would please to give me my liberty, which I every

day repeated on my knees; but he answered that this

must be a work of time, and that first I must swear a

peace with him and his kingdom. He told me also that

by the laws of the nation I must be searched by two of his

officers, and that as this could not be done without my

help, he trusted them in my hands, and whatever they

took from me should be returned when I left the country.

I took up the two officers, and put them into my coat

pockets. These gentlemen, having pen, ink, and paper

about them, made an exact list of everything they saw,

which I afterward translated into English, and which ran

as follows:

"In the right coat pocket of the great Man-Mountain

we found only one great piece of coarse cloth, large enough

to cover the carpet of your Majesty's chief room of state.

In the left pocket we saw a huge silver chest, with a silver

cover, which we could not lift. We desired that it should

be opened, and one of us stepping into it found himself

up to the mid-leg in a sort of dust, some of which flying

into our faces sent us both into a fit of sneezing. In his

right waistcoat pocket we found a number of white thin

substances, folded one over another, about the size of

three men, tied with a strong cable, and marked with

black figures, which we humbly conceive to be writings.

In the left there was a sort of engine, from the back of

which extended twenty long poles, with which, we

conjecture, the Man-Mountain combs his head. In the

smaller pocket on the right side were several round flat

pieces of white and red metal, of different sizes. Some of

the white, which appeared to be silver, were so large and

heavy that my comrade and I could hardly lift them.

From another pocket hung a huge silver chain, with a

wonderful kind of engine fastened to it, a globe half silver

and half of some transparent metal; for on the transparent

side we saw certain strange figures, and thought we could

touch them till we found our fingers stopped by the shining

substance. This engine made an incessant noise, like

a water-mill, and we conjecture it is either some unknown

animal, or the god he worships, but probably the latter,

for he told us that he seldom did anything without consulting it.

"This is a list of what we found about the body of the

Man-Mountain, who treated us with great civility."

I had one private pocket which escaped their search,

containing a pair of spectacles and a small spy-glass,

which, being of no consequence to the Emperor, I did not

think myself bound in honor to discover.


My gentleness and good behavior gained so far on the

Emperor and his Court, and, indeed, on the people in

general, that I began to have hopes of getting my liberty

in a short time. The natives came by degrees to be less

fearful of danger from me. I would sometimes lie down

and let five or six of them dance on my hand; and at last

the boys and girls ventured to come and play at hide-and-seek in my hair.

The horses of the army and of the royal stables were

no longer shy, having been daily led before me; and one

of the Emperor's huntsmen, on a large courser, took my

foot, shoe and all, which was indeed a prodigious leap.

I amused the Emperor one day in a very extraordinary

manner. I took nine sticks, and fixed them firmly in the

ground in a square. Then I took four other sticks, and

tied them parallel at each corner, about two feet from

the ground. I fastened my handkerchief to the nine sticks

that stood erect, and extended it on all sides till it was as

tight as the top of a drum; and I desired the Emperor

to let a troop of his best horse, twenty-four in number,

come and exercise upon this plain. His majesty approved

of the proposal, and I took them up one by one, with the

proper officers to exercise them. As soon as they got into

order they divided into two parties, discharged blunt

arrows, drew their swords, fled and pursued, and, in short,

showed the best military discipline I ever beheld. The

parallel sticks secured them and their horses from falling

off the stage, and the Emperor was so much delighted

that he ordered this entertainment to be repeated several

days, and persuaded the Empress herself to let me hold

her in her chair within two yards of the stage, whence she

could view the whole performance. Fortunately no

accident happened, only once a fiery horse, pawing with

his hoof, struck a hole in my handkerchief, and overthrew

his rider and himself. But I immediately relieved them

both, and covering the hole with one hand, I set down the

troop with the other as I had taken them up. The horse

that fell was strained in the shoulder; but the rider was

not hurt, and I repaired my handkerchief as well as I

could. However, I would not trust to the strength of it

any more in such dangerous enterprises.

I had sent so many petitions for my liberty that his

Majesty at length mentioned the matter in a full council,

where it was opposed by none except Skyresh Bolgolam,

admiral of the realm, who was pleased without any

provocation to be my mortal enemy. However, he agreed at

length, though he succeeded in himself drawing up the

conditions on which I should be set free. After they were

read I was requested to swear to perform them in the

method prescribed by their laws, which was to hold my

right foot in my left hand, and to place the middle finger

of my right hand on the crown of my head, and my

thumb on the top of my right ear. But I have made a

translation of the conditions, which I here offer to the


"Golbaste Mamarem Evlame Gurdile Shefin Mully Ully

Gue, Most Mighty Emperor of Lilliput, delight and terror

of the universe, whose dominions extend to the ends of

the globe, monarch of all monarchs, taller than the sons

of men, whose feet press down to the center, and whose

head strikes against the sun, at whose nod the princes of

the earth shake their knees, pleasant as the spring,

comfortable as the summer, fruitful as autumn, dreadful as

winter: His Most Sublime Majesty proposeth to the

Man-Mountain, lately arrived at our celestial dominions,

the following articles, which by a solemn oath he shall be

obliged to perform:

"First. The Man-Mountain shall not depart from our

dominions without our license under the great seal.

"Second. He shall not presume to come into our

metropolis without our express order, at which time the

inhabitants shall have two hours' warning to keep within


"Third. The said Man-Mountain shall confine his

walks to our principal high roads, and not offer to walk

or lie down in a meadow or field of corn.

"Fourth. As he walks the said roads he shall take the

utmost care not to trample upon the bodies of any of our

loving subjects, their horses or carriages, nor take any of

our subjects into his hands without their own consent.

"Fifth. If an express requires extraordinary speed the

Man-Mountain shall be obliged to carry in his pocket the

messenger and horse a six days' journey, and return the

said messenger (if so required) safe to our imperial


"Sixth. He shall be our ally against our enemies in the

island of Blefuscu, and do his utmost to destroy their

fleet, which is now preparing to invade us.

"Lastly. Upon his solemn oath to observe all the above

articles, the said Man-Mountain shall have a daily allowance

of meat and drink sufficient for the support of 1,724

of our subjects, with free access to our royal person, and

other marks of our favor. Given at our palace at Belfaburac,

the twelfth day of the ninety-first moon of our


I swore to these articles with great cheerfulness,

whereupon my chains were immediately unlocked, and I was

at full liberty.

One morning, about a fortnight after I had obtained

my freedom, Reldresal, the Emperor's secretary for

private affairs, came to my house, attended only by one

servant. He ordered his coach to wait at a distance, and

desired that I would give him an hour's audience. I

offered to lie down that he might the more conveniently

reach my ear; but he chose rather to let me hold him in

my hand during our conversation. He began with compliments

on my liberty, but he added that, save for the

present state of things at Court, perhaps I might not

have obtained it so soon. "For," he said, "however

flourishing we may seem to foreigners, we are in danger

of an invasion from the island of Blefuscu, which is the

other great empire of the universe, almost as large and as

powerful as this of his Majesty. For as to what we have

heard you say, that there are other kingdoms in the

world, inhabited by human creatures as large as yourself,

our philosophers are very doubtful, and rather conjecture

that you dropped from the moon, or one of the stars,

because a hundred mortals of your size would soon destroy

all the fruit and cattle of his Majesty's dominions.

Besides, our histories of six thousand moons make no mention

of any other regions than the two mighty empires of

Lilliput and Blefuscu, which, as I was going to tell you,

are engaged in a most obstinate war, which began in the

following manner: It is allowed on all hands that the

primitive way of breaking eggs was upon the larger end;

but his present Majesty's grandfather, while he was a boy,

going to eat an egg, and breaking it according to the

ancient practice, happened to cut one of his fingers.

Whereupon the Emperor, his father, made a law commanding

all his subjects to break the smaller end of their

eggs. The people so highly resented this law that there

have been six rebellions raised on that account, wherein

one emperor lost his life, and another his crown. It is

calculated that eleven hundred persons have at different

times suffered rather than break their eggs at the smaller

end. But these rebels, the Bigendians, have found so

much encouragement at the Emperor of Blefuscu's

Court, to which they always fled for refuge, that a bloody

war, as I said, has been carried on between the two empires

for six-and-thirty moons; and now the Blefuscudians have

equipped a large fleet, and are preparing to descend upon

us. Therefore his Imperial Majesty, placing great

confidence in your valor and strength, has commanded me

to set the case before you."

I desired the secretary to present my humble duty to

the Emperor, and to let him know that I was ready, at

the risk of my life, to defend him against all invaders.


It was not long before I communicated to his Majesty

the plan I formed for seizing the enemy's whole fleet.

The Empire of Blefuscu is an island parted from Lilliput

only by a channel eight hundred yards wide. I consulted

the most experienced seamen on the depth of the channel,

and they told me that in the middle, at high water, it was

seventy glumguffs (about six feet of European measure).

I walked toward the coast, where, lying down behind a

hillock, I took out my spy-glass, and viewed the enemy's

fleet at anchor--about fifty men-of-war, and other vessels.

I then came back to my house and gave orders for a great

quantity of the strongest cables and bars of iron. The

cable was about as thick as packthread, and the bars of

the length and size of a knitting-needle. I trebled the

cable to make it stronger, and for the same reason twisted

three of the iron bars together, bending the ends into a

hook. Having thus fixed fifty hooks to as many cables,

I went back to the coast, and taking off my coat, shoes,

and stockings, walked into the sea in my leather jacket

about half an hour before high water. I waded with what

haste I could, swimming in the middle about thirty yards,

till I felt ground, and thus arrived at the fleet in less than

half an hour. The enemy was so frightened when they

saw me that they leaped out of their ships and swam

ashore, where there could not be fewer than thirty

thousand. Then, fastening a hook to the hole at the prow of

each ship, I tied all the cords together at the end.

Meanwhile the enemy discharged several thousand arrows,

many of which stuck in my hands and face. My greatest

fear was for my eyes, which I should have lost if I had

not suddenly thought of the pair of spectacles which had

escaped the Emperor's searchers. These I took out and

fastened upon my nose, and thus armed went on with my

work in spite of the arrows, many of which struck against

the glasses of my spectacles, but without any other effect

than slightly disturbing them. Then, taking the knot in

my hand, I began to pull; but not a ship would stir, for

they were too fast held by their anchors. Thus the boldest

part of my enterprise remained. Letting go the cord,

I resolutely cut with my knife the cables that fastened

the anchors, receiving more than two hundred shots in

my face and hands. Then I took up again the knotted end

of the cables to which my hooks were tied, and with great

ease drew fifty of the enemy's largest men-of-war after me.

When the Blefuscudians saw the fleet moving in order,

and me pulling at the end, they set up a scream of grief

and despair that it is impossible to describe. When I had

got out of danger I stopped awhile to pick out the arrows

that stuck in my hands and face, and rubbed on some of

the same ointment that was given me at my arrival. I

then took off my spectacles, and after waiting about an

hour, till the tide was a little fallen, I waded on to the

royal port of Lilliput.

The Emperor and his whole Court stood on the shore

awaiting me. They saw the ships move forward in a large

half-moon, but could not discern me, who, in the middle

of the channel, was under water up to my neck. The

Emperor concluded that I was drowned, and that the

enemy's fleet was approaching in a hostile manner. But

he was soon set at ease, for, the channel growing shallower

every step I made, I came in a short time within hearing,

and holding up the end of the cable by which the fleet

was fastened, I cried in a loud voice: "Long live the most

puissant Emperor of Lilliput!" The Prince received me

at my landing with all possible joy, and made me a

Nardal on the spot, which is the highest title of honor

among them.

His Majesty desired that I would take some opportunity

to bring all the rest of his enemy's ships into his ports,

and seemed to think of nothing less than conquering the

whole Empire of Blefuscu, and becoming the sole monarch

of the world. But I plainly protested that I would never

be the means of bringing a free and brave people into

slavery; and though the wisest of the Ministers were of

my opinion, my open refusal was so opposed to his

Majesty's ambition that he could never forgive me. And

from this time a plot began between himself and those of

his Ministers who were my enemies, that nearly ended

in my utter destruction.

About three weeks after this exploit there arrived an

embassy from Blefuscu, with humble offers of peace,

which was soon concluded, on terms very advantageous

to our Emperor. There were six ambassadors, with a

train of about five hundred persons, all very magnificent.

Having been privately told that I had befriended them,

they made me a visit, and paying me many compliments

on my valor and generosity, invited me to their kingdom

in the Emperor their master's name. I asked them to

present my most humble respects to the Emperor their

master, whose royal person I resolved to attend before I

returned to my own country. Accordingly, the next time

I had the honor to see our Emperor I desired his general

permission to visit the Blefuscudian monarch. This he

granted me, but in a very cold manner, of which I afterward

learned the reason.

When I was just preparing to pay my respects to the

Emperor of Blefuscu, a distinguished person at Court, to

whom I had once done a great service, came to my house

very privately at night, and without sending his name

desired admission. I put his lordship into my coat pocket,

and, giving orders to a trusty servant to admit no one, I

fastened the door, placed my visitor on the table, and sat

down by it. His lordship's face was full of trouble; and

he asked me to hear him with patience, in a matter that

highly concerned my honor and my life.

"You are aware," he said, "that Skyresh Bolgolam has

been your mortal enemy ever since your arrival, and his

hatred is increased since your great success against

Blefuscu, by which his glory as admiral is obscured. This

lord and others have accused you of treason, and several

councils have been called in the most private manner on

your account. Out of gratitude for your favors I procured

information of the whole proceedings, venturing my

head for your service, and this was the charge against


"First, that you, having brought the imperial fleet of

Blefuscu into the royal port, were commanded by his

Majesty to seize all the other ships, and put to death all

the Bigendian exiles, and also all the people of the empire

who would not immediately consent to break their eggs

at the smaller end. And that, like a false traitor to his

Most Serene Majesty, you excused yourself from the service

on pretence of unwillingness to force the consciences

and destroy the liberties and lives of an innocent people.

"Again, when ambassadors arrived from the Court of

Blefuscu, like a false traitor, you aided and entertained

them, though you knew them to be servants of a prince

lately in open war against his Imperial Majesty.

"Moreover, you are now preparing, contrary to the

duty of a faithful subject, to voyage to the Court of


"In the debate on this charge," my friend continued,

"his Majesty often urged the services you had done him,

while the admiral and treasurer insisted that you should

be put to a shameful death. But Reldresal, secretary for

private affairs, who has always proved himself your friend

suggested that if his Majesty would please to spare your

life and only give orders to put out both your eyes, justice

might in some measure be satisfied. At this Bolgolam

rose up in fury, wondering how the secretary dared desire

to preserve the life of a traitor; and the treasurer, pointing

out the expense of keeping you, also urged your death.

But his Majesty was graciously pleased to say that since

the council thought the loss of your eyes too easy a

punishment, some other might afterward be inflicted. And

the secretary, humbly desiring to be heard again, said

that as to expense your allowance might be gradually

lessened, so that, for want of sufficient food you should

grow weak and faint, and die in a few months, when his

Majesty's subjects might cut your flesh from your bones

and bury it, leaving the skeleton for the admiration of


"Thus, through the great friendship of the secretary

the affair was arranged. It was commanded that the plan

of starving you by degrees should be kept a secret; but

the sentence of putting out your eyes was entered on the

books. In three days your friend the secretary will come

to your house and read the accusation before you, and

point out the great mercy of his Majesty, that only condemns

you to the loss of your eyes--which, he does not

doubt, you will submit to humbly and gratefully. Twenty

of his Majesty's surgeons will attend, to see the operation

well performed, by discharging very sharp-pointed arrows

into the balls of your eyes as you lie on the ground.

"I leave you," said my friend, "to consider what

measures you will take; and, to escape suspicion, I must

immediately return, as secretly as I came."

His lordship did so; and I remained alone, in great

perplexity. At first I was bent on resistance; for while I

had liberty I could easily with stones pelt the metropolis

to pieces; but I soon rejected that idea with horror,

remembering the oath I had made to the Emperor, and the

favors I had received from him. At last, having his

Majesty's leave to pay my respects to the Emperor of

Blefuscu, I resolved to take this opportunity. Before the

three days had passed I wrote a letter to my friend the

secretary telling him of my resolution; and, without

waiting for an answer, went to the coast, and entering the

channel, between wading and swimming reached the port

of Blefuscu, where the people, who had long expected me,

led me to the capital.

His Majesty, with the royal family and great officers of

the Court, came out to receive me, and they entertained

me in a manner suited to the generosity of so great a

prince. I did not, however, mention my disgrace with the

Emperor of Lilliput, since I did not suppose that prince

would disclose the secret while I was out of his power.

But in this, it soon appeared, I was deceived.


Three days after my arrival, walking out of curiosity

to the northeast coast of the island, I observed at some

distance in the sea something that looked like a boat

overturned. I pulled off my shoes and stockings, and

wading two or three hundred yards, I plainly saw it to be

a real boat, which I supposed might by some tempest

have been driven from a ship. I returned immediately to

the city for help, and after a huge amount of labor I

managed to get my boat to the royal port of Blefuscu,

where a great crowd of people appeared, full of wonder at

sight of so prodigious a vessel. I told the Emperor that

my good fortune had thrown this boat in my way to

carry me to some place whence I might return to my

native country, and begged his orders for materials to fit

it up, and leave to depart--which, after many kindly

speeches, he was pleased to grant.

Meanwhile the Emperor of Lilliput, uneasy at my long

absence (but never imagining that I had the least notice

of his designs), sent a person of rank to inform the

Emperor of Blefuscu of my disgrace; this messenger had

orders to represent the great mercy of his master, who was

content to punish me with the loss of my eyes, and who

expected that his brother of Blefuscu would have me sent

back to Lilliput, bound hand and foot, to be punished as

a traitor. The Emperor of Blefuscu answered with many

civil excuses. He said that as for sending me bound, his

brother knew it was impossible. Moreover, though I had

taken away his fleet he was grateful to me for many good

offices I had done him in making the peace. But that both

their Majesties would soon be made easy; for I had found

a prodigious vessel on the shore, able to carry me on the

sea, which he had given orders to fit up; and he hoped in

a few weeks both empires would be free from me.

With this answer the messenger returned to Lilliput;

and I (though the monarch of Blefuscu secretly offered

me his gracious protection if I would continue in his

service) hastened my departure, resolving never more to put

confidence in princes.

In about a month I was ready to take leave. The

Emperor of Blefuscu, with the Empress and the royal family,

came out of the palace; and I lay down on my face to kiss

their hands, which they graciously gave me. His Majesty

presented me with fifty purses of sprugs (their greatest

gold coin) and his picture at full length, which I put

immediately into one of my gloves, to keep it from being

hurt. Many other ceremonies took place at my departure.

I stored the boat with meat and drink, and took six

cows and two bulls alive, with as many ewes and rams,

intending to carry them into my own country; and to feed

them on board, I had a good bundle of hay and a bag of

corn. I would gladly have taken a dozen of the natives;

but this was a thing the Emperor would by no means permit,

and besides a diligent search into my pockets, his

Majesty pledged my honor not to carry away any of his

subjects, though with their own consent and desire.

Having thus prepared all things as well as I was able,

I set sail. When I had made twenty-four leagues, by my

reckoning, from the island of Blefuscu, I saw a sail steering

to the northeast. I hailed her, but could get no

answer; yet I found I gained upon her, for the wind

slackened; and in half an hour she spied me, and

discharged a gun. I came up with her between five and six

in the evening, Sept. 26, 1701; but my heart leaped within

me to see her English colors. I put my cows and sheep

into my coat pockets, and got on board with all my little

cargo. The captain received me with kindness, and asked

me to tell him what place I came from last; but at my

answer he thought I was raving. However, I took my black

cattle and sheep out of my pocket, which, after great

astonishment, clearly convinced him.

We arrived in England on the 13th of April, 1702. I

stayed two months with my wife and family; but my

eager desire to see foreign countries would suffer me to

remain no longer. However, while in England I made

great profit by showing my cattle to persons of quality

and others; and before I began my second voyage I sold

them for 600l. I left 1500l. with my wife, and fixed her in

a good house; then taking leave of her and my boy and

girl, with tears on both sides, I sailed on board the