Study Guide

Robinson Crusoe

Robinson Crusoe Summary

Robinson Crusoe is a very long book, but the novel can, more or less, be broken down into three major movements.

Part I: Before the Island

Before landing on the island, Crusoe's father wants him to be a good, middle-class guy. Crusoe, who wants nothing more than to travel around in a ship, is definitely not into this idea. He struggles against the authority of both his father and God and decides to thumb his nose at both by going adventuring on the sea instead.

After sailing around for a while, he makes a bit of money in trade, but then is captured and made into a slave off the coast of Africa. Here he befriends a young man named Xury, with whom he escapes from captivity.

Picked up by a Portuguese sailing captain, Crusoe makes it to Brazil where he buys a sugar plantation. He does fairly well financially, but soon becomes involved in a venture to procure slaves from Africa. On the voyage there he gets shipwrecked and is left as the only survivor on a deserted island.

Part II: Life on the Island

This portion of the novel is dedicated to Crusoe's time alone on the island. He builds three main structures: his initial shelter, his country home on the opposite side of the island, and his guns and ammo fort in the woods. He spends his time planting corn, barley, and rice. He learns to make bread. He builds furniture, weaves baskets, and makes pots. Crusoe also raises goats and tends to his little animal family of cats, dogs, and a parrot. Most importantly, though, Crusoe becomes stronger in his religious faith, eventually submitting to the authority of God. He devotes himself to much religious reflection and prayer.

Part III: Escape from the Island

In final section of the book, Crusoe sees a footprint on the shore one day and learns that he's actually not alone on the island. There are also (gasp!) cannibals. Crusoe struggles with the question of whether or not he should take revenge on them. Eventually, he meets with Friday, a native man whom he is able to rescue from the cannibals. Crusoe teaches Friday English and converts him to Christianity. The two become like father and son (more or less). Friday and Crusoe also rescue a Spaniard and Friday's father from a different group of cannibals.

Eventually, an English longboat full of sailors lands on the island. Crusoe learns that the men have mutinied against their captain. After Crusoe helps restore order to the ship, the men and captain pledge allegiance to Crusoe and agree to take him home. Crusoe then returns to Europe with Friday, where he comes into a great deal of money from his sugar plantations. Crusoe gets married and eventually revisits the island in his late years. The novel ends with promise of more adventures for him in the sequel.

  • The Preface

    • The editor tells us that if ever a private story were worth making public, then this is the one.
    • This man's life (that would be Robinson Crusoe's) is full of wonder and variety. It's also moral and can teach you a thing or two.
    • Also? The editor wants us to know that this tale is not fiction, but a "History of Fact." Its publication is a public service. (Pro tip: the novel is, of course, fiction. Defoe is just trying to amp up some sales.)
  • Before the Island

    • The narrator tells us he was born in 1632 in York, England. His father was a tradesman, originally from Bremen, Germany.
    • The narrator is called Robinson, a name from his mother's relations. His last name was originally "Kreutznaer," which was then Anglicized to "Crusoe." (Hence: Robinson Crusoe.)
    • Crusoe is the younger of two brothers: one of whom died fighting with his Regiment in Flanders. The second brother? Well, he's not so sure what happened to him.
    • Crusoe's head is filled, from a very early age, with "rambling Thoughts" (5); he dreams of going on sea voyages. His father, however, hopes his son will go into law instead. (Yawn.)
    • It's pretty clear that Crusoe's desire to see the world on a ship will be his downfall. He writes that "there seem'd to be something fatal in that Propension of Nature tending directly to the Life of Misery which was to befal me" (5). In other words, Crusoe blames the bad things to come on his wanderlust.  But he clearly still can't help it.
    • One day, Crusoe's father calls him in for a chat: Dad advises him to abandon his "wandring Inclination" and be content with his station in life (5).
    • Crusoe's family is of the "middle state," which, according to his father, means that they are safely middle class and in the perfect balance between the two extremes: poverty and riches (6).
    • Crusoe's father suggests that calamity is always found in polarities. He implores Crusoe not to go wandering off on adventures like his now dead older brother did. (Major guilt trip.)
    • Crusoe's dad is very stern and says that if his son chooses to ignore the advice, God will not bless Crusoe, and Crusoe will rue the day he didn't listen to his father.
    • Crusoe, who is narrating these events retrospectively, interjects to tell us that his father's talk with him was, in many ways, prophetic. (Uh oh.)
    • Crusoe is at first very affected by his father's advice and decides to stay at home.  This doesn't last long, of course. At age eighteen, he resolves to run away without his father's consent.
    • Crusoe informs his mother of his intention to leave, who falls into a great fussing fit and also refuses to give her consent.
    • Almost a year later, Crusoe finally gets his chance to break free: a friend is leaving on a ship from Hull to London; he decides to ride along.
    • From his retrospective description of the event, we know this is a terrible idea. He says the decision was made "without asking God's Blessing, or my Father's, without any Consideration or Circumstances or Consequences, and in an ill Hour" (9).
    • On the boat, a storm strikes, and of course, Crusoe is scared out of his mind. He is hit with a series of "wise and sober Thoughts" in which he decides that he should go home immediately and finally listen to his father (9).
    • Crusoe bargains with God and makes a vow to never go on a ship again if God will spare his life.
    • Once the storm clears, however, Robinson forgets all about his so-called resolutions and his "deal" with God. (This will be a pattern for our dear narrator.) His friend finds him on the ship and offers him some tasty punch. The two decide to get rip roaring drunk.
    • Crusoe has a few twinges of his conscience about all those vows and promises he made to God, but "Drink and Company" keep him distracted enough that he doesn't feel too terribly guilty (10).
    • Due to contrary winds, the ship comes to an anchor at Yarmouth Roads. The ship stays there for several days and the wind gets worse and worse.
    • Eventually, a terrible storm hits the ship. Down in his cabin, Crusoe is scared out of his mind (again), especially because of all those promises he made to God during the last storm.
    • The master orders that the Main-Mast be cut away so the ship can weather the storm. Then the ship springs a leak, and Crusoe joins the men to help them pump out water.
    • The ship fires a distress signal, which scares Crusoe so much that he falls into a swoon.
    • Another ship sends a rescue boat. Rowing away, Crusoe watches the ship founder and sink.
    • The rescue boat lands on shore, and Crusoe and the men head first to Yarmouth and then to London. Crusoe writes that he probably should have gone home right then and there to Hull, but alas, "ill Fate push'd me on now with an Obstinacy that nothing could resist" (14).
    • Crusoe has a chilling exchange with the master of the ship, who warns Crusoe that the storm was a sign, and that he should not ever go to sea again.
    • Crusoe wrestles with these thoughts, but the terror of the storm soon fades (as it always seems to with this guy) and he decides to board a ship headed to the coast of Africa.
    • Crusoe is advised to buy goods ("Toys and Trifles," 16) to trade on the journey, and he does.
    • His description of the adventure, which turns out to be his one and only success, is short. He learns about navigation and a little bit about sailing, and then returns to London with gold dust, which he trades for a big wad of cash.
    • Crusoe sets out on the ship again headed down the same route, but this time disaster strikes: a group of Turkish pirates attack Crusoe's ship and Crusoe is taken prisoner and made a slave to the captain of the ship.
    • Crusoe longs to escape his captivity in the house of his master in Sallee, Morocco, where he looks after the garden and does other menial chores.
    • After two years, Crusoe finally finds a means of escape: his master's fishing boat.
    • Crusoe is able to get the boat stocked up with all kinds of goods like beeswax, guns, and twine.
    • One day, he is asked by the master to go out fishing with a Moor and a young boy. Crusoe manages to throw the Moor overboard (who them swims safely back to shore) and gain the allegiance of Xury, the young boy.
    • After days of sailing, Crusoe and Xury need water to drink. One night, they come close to shore, but the land is filled with yelping, howling beasts. Xury tells Crusoe they are "Lyons" (23).
    • In the day, Xury goes on land, finds water, and shoots a hare for dinner.
    • Without navigational instruments for a very long sea voyage, Crusoe decides instead to sail along the coast waiting for an English trading ship to take them in.
    • In the meantime, Crusoe and Xury kill a giant lion, whose skin they use for furry bedding. Xury also takes one of the beast's giant paws.
    • Crusoe and Xury sail southward looking for English ships; weeks go by and the land becomes more inhabited.
    • Crusoe reluctantly accepts food from the people on the shore (he characterizes them as "friendly Negroes," 28), and in return shoots a big spotted leopard for them. He takes the skin for himself.
    • Crusoe and Xury reach the Cape de Verde Islands, where he sees a Portuguese slave ship. Crusoe talks to a Scottish sailor who is able to understand his English, and he and his goods are kindly taken on board.
    • The captain of the ship is headed for Brazil, and now so are Crusoe and Xury.
    • The captain buys Crusoe's boat from him and also tries to buy Xury. Crusoe agrees to let the captain have Xury, and the captain says he will set the boy free in ten years, so long as Xury converts to Christianity.
    • Twenty two days later, the boat lands in Brazil.
    • Crusoe buys a sugar plantation and over the course of a few years, gains enough profit to become roughly middle class on his own. Crusoe mentions that he could have had this kind of life back in England.
    • The Portuguese sea captain sets sail for England and is able to procure all of Crusoe's money and goods from back in England. Crusoe sells the English goods and makes a tremendous profit. Crusoe uses his wealth to buy "a Negro Slave, and an European
    • Servant" (33).
    • Soon, though, Crusoe is hit with another bout of wanderlust. At the same time, he's approached by a group of planters who want him to sail to Guinea to purchase slaves for them privately. He is offered his fair share of slaves as part of the bargain. Crusoe accepts.
    • Crusoe sets sail for Guinea on September 1, 1659, the same day that, eight years earlier, he left his mother and father at Hull. (Foreshadowing alert.)
    • The ship hits a series of storms and is blown off course. Eventually, though, the ship runs upon land, and the men are forced to abandon the vessel before it gets torn to bits by the waves.
    • Crusoe fights his way to the shore, but he's the only one who survives. As for the rest, Crusoe writes that they drowned, leaving behind "three of their Hats, one Cap, and two Shoes" (41).
  • Life on the Island

    • Crusoe realizes he's all alone with no supplies, only a "Knife, a Tobacco-pipe, and a little Tobacco in a Box" – he proceeds to have a meltdown (41).
    • After finding water, Crusoe climbs up a tree to sleep and rest.
    • Waking, Crusoe decides he needs supplies, so he swims out to the still intact ship. (It wasn't torn to bits by the waves after all.)
    • Crusoe snags food, clothes, spirits, tools, ammunition, and arms. He then makes a raft out of some of the ship materials and floats them all back to shore.
    • Crusoe, even though he knows nothing of the land or where he is, must now figure out where to set up camp. Surveying the land, he sees that the island is barren and, he guesses, uninhabited. He builds a hut on the shore.
    • Crusoe makes another trip out to the ship for supplies. He fortifies his hut area by adding a tent, and then finally goes to sleep.
    • Crusoe continues to make daily trips out to the ship to strip it of any useful supplies. After thirteen days, he has made eleven trips back to the ship.
    • On his last trip to the ship, he finds gold and silver. He starts to take the money, but a storm rises up and he swims back to shore. The next morning, the ship has completely sunk.
    • Crusoe sets out to find a new place for his camp. He needs a location with water, shelter from the sun, security from attack, and a view of the sea. He finds a "little Plain on the Side of a rising Hill" that fits the bill (51).
    • The first thing Crusoe does is build a fence around his camp to protect himself. He sets up two tents, carries his provisions inside, and then digs into the side of the rocky hill to make a sort of cellar.
    • During this time, Crusoe witness a lightning storm and decides to parcel out his gunpowder into different bags and boxes so it won't catch fire.
    • He also roams around the island with his gun, shooting goats. He attempts to tame a kid (that is, a baby goat), but has no luck, so he eats it.
    • Crusoe's thoughts turn inward and he starts to get a little depressed about his prospects. Before he lurches into despair, though, he realizes that he was the only one saved of all the men and he has tons of supplies. He concludes "All Evills are to be consider'd with the Good that is in them, and with what worse attends them" (54).
    • Crusoe hatches a makeshift calendar on a post with his knife so he can remember how long he has been on the island and when to observe the Sabbath. He landed on September 30, 1659.
    • Further inventory of Crusoe's stock from the ship: he rescued a dog and two cats, along with ink and pens and a Bible or two. He, however, lacks tools such as a shovel or a spade.
    • Crusoe draws up a pro/con list (titled "Evil" and "Good") about his current situation. For every evil, there is always a good to balance it (57).
    • Crusoe works on improving his situation: he carves out more space in his cave, he builds a table and chair, and he carves places to hang his guns on the wall. Crusoe also begins to write in his journal, which he will do until his ink runs out.
    • Crusoe begins his journal on the "Island of Despair," as he calls it (60). The journal begins on September 30, 1659, with Crusoe's arrival on the island.
    • The entries for September 30 through the end of the year (January 1, 1660) detail the events Crusoe had previously described: his salvaging supplies from the ship, improving his camp, building a table and chairs, etc.
    • In January, Crusoe begins going farther into the valleys to hunt goats with his dog. This doesn't turn out so well.
    • Crusoe also begins building an enclosing wall around his camp, which an editor's note tells us he worked on from January 3rd to April 14th.
    • The rain increases during this period and Crusoe also accidentally plants some barley, which springs up and provides him with crops. He interprets the growth of the barley as a miracle from God at first, but then realizes it grew because he scattered chicken feed there.
    • Crusoe begins cultivating and growing the barley, and also some rice.
    • After Crusoe finishes his wall in April, an earthquake hits, followed by hurricane-force winds and rain. Crusoe is unnerved and takes a shot of rum in his cave.
    • Afraid of being buried alive, Crusoe decides to move his camp to a new, earthquake-safe location, but cannot decide where or how.
    • The wreckage of his old ship is washed ashore by the hurricane. Crusoe works on salvaging beams, planks, and iron bolts from the wreck from May 1st to June 15th.
    • Around this time, Crusoe falls ill with a fever. He prays to God for help, the first time "since the Storm off of Hull" (74).
    • In his feverish state, Crusoe dreams of a man with a spear who has come to kill him for not repenting. Various religious reflections follow.
    • Crusoe experiences a spiritual awakening of sorts, remembers the words of his father, and prays to God for help (for real this time).
    • The next day, Crusoe prepares food for his sick self and asks God to bless the turtle eggs he's about to eat.
    • More spiritual reflections follow, culminating with the question: "Why has God done this to me? What have I done to be thus us'd?" (79). He immediately checks himself for asking such a question.
    • Crusoe finds one of the Bibles left over from the ship's cargo and begins to read it, though he doesn't make much progress because he also tries to chew some tobacco. He does take note of these words: "Call on me in the Day of Trouble, and I will deliver, and thou shalt glorify me" (81).
    • That night, he prays before bed, drinks some tobacco-steeped rum, and falls into a sleep of recovery for probably, he reckons, a day or two.
    • From here on out, Crusoe starts reading the Bible regularly and praying. During this spiritual awakening, Crusoe realizes that he should be seeking deliverance from his sins rather than "Deliverance from Affliction" – that is, escape from the island (83).
    • Crusoe decides to explore the island: he finds melons and grapes and limes and lemons and also a lush and awesome little valley that he immediately thinks he's the rightful "King and Lord" of (85).
    • Crusoe considers moving his habitation to the lush side of the island, but thinks better of removing to the interior, away from the sea. Instead, he decides to build a tiny vacation hut and spend his summer months there.  This is almost starting to sound luxurious.
    • Crusoe's summer ends and the rains come. He returns to his cave on the bare side of the island.
    • He finds that his cats have had kittens, which is kind of weird since they're both female. After a while, he decides there are too many cats, so he kills them "like Vermine" (88).
    • Crusoe rations his food during the rainy season and expands his cave to include a back door. September comes and Crusoe has been on the island a year. He celebrates the anniversary with religious reflections.
    • During this time, Crusoe experiments with growing barley and rice. He eventually figures out that he must plant in February in order to take advantage of the rains in March and April, and yield a good crop.
    • Crusoe tends and cultivates a circle of hedge trees around his summer bower and main home.
    • He describes the seasons on the island, always alternating between rainy and dry.
    • Crusoe takes up basket weaving, making many wicker items for carrying his corn and other things.
    • Intent on exploring the whole island, Crusoe treks to the West with a hatchet, gun, and his dog. He cannot discern whether he is in the Spanish occupied dominions or among cannibals, people whom he terms "savages" (93).
    • On his trek back home, Crusoe knocks a parrot out of a tree with a stick and decides to keep it as his pet and name it Poll. He also picks up a kid goat with the help of his dog and decides to keep it and tame it.
    • September 30th rolls around, and so too the two-year anniversary of Crusoe's landing. He spends the day in religious observance and realizes he's happier now than he was in his life before.
    • A general description of Crusoe's third year on the island follows: reading scripture, hunting, cooking and preserving food, making a shelf (with much labor), planting barley and rice (protecting his crops from birds, fashioning tools), and trying to figure out how to make bread.
    • Crusoe manages to make bread: he molds some pots together with clay and figures out how to glaze them in the fire so they're waterproof. He then fashions a mortar and pestle out of a giant block of wood and a few sieves from old seaman's clothes.
    • Crusoe cooks everything up in the fire in pots around which he sets embers and voilà – bread!
    • With lots of harvest coming in, Crusoe figures out that he need only plant his barley and rice once a year.
    • Crusoe attempts to make use of the ship's boat that washed ashore, but it's too big to move. Instead, he carves a canoe out of the trunk of a tree.
    • Crusoe carves the canoe from a big cedar tree over the next several months. He fails, though, to figure out how to get it from the land into the water.
    • Crusoe first attempts to build a dock, but realizes that it would take him years to do without help. He gives up, realizing it is best not to undertake building a giant boat without planning how you're going to get it into the water first.
    • Crusoe passes his fourth anniversary on the island and celebrates with even more religious reflections: he is now "Lord of the whole Mannor" and therefore has no want or envy (109). He is thankful for being on the island, as it has made him into a Christian.
    • Crusoe is low on ink, bread, and clothes. He makes clothes out of fur, and also starts to build a (much smaller) canoe with which to explore the rest of "my little Kingdom" (116).
    • Crusoe tricks out his boat with sails, an umbrella, lockers, supplies, and ammunition, and then sets out on an adventurous sailing trip around the island.
    • After a few days, Crusoe's boat gets caught in a current and takes him far away from the island. Eventually, though, an eddy brings him back toward the island.
    • Crusoe harbors his boat and realizes he is on the Northern (the opposite) side of the island. He makes his way back home, passing by his country house.
    • Resting a bit at his summer place, he comes across Poll, who scares the life out of him when the parrot says his name.
    • Over the course of the next year, Crusoe leads a calm and restful existence improving his craftwork: carpentry, earthenware making, and wicker weaving.
    • In his eleventh year on the island, Crusoe starts running low on gunpowder, so he decides to trap goats in order to tame them and breed them. This involves digging big pits and luring goats into them.
    • Crusoe encloses a "Savanna" on the island for the goat enclosures where he breeds them like flocks of sheep (124). After several years, he gets 43 goats, which keeps him stocked up on milk, cheese, butter, and meat.
    • Crusoe describes sitting down to dinner with his island family: Poll the parrot, his dog, and two cats.
    • Crusoe also describes himself, all dressed in goat skin and long whiskers. A far cry from that English gentleman we first met.
    • Around this time, Crusoe decides to go back for his canoe, but decides simply to build a second boat and have one on each side of the island.
    • Crusoe takes stock of his goods and how he has spent his time: he has made a wall, grown fields of corn, built a country house, tended goats, planted grapes, and all in all kept himself very busy.
  • Escape from the Island

    • One day, Crusoe is heading to his boat when he sees a man's footprint in the sand. Gasp! This is quite a shock to old Crusoe, and he proceeds to have a right proper freak out.
    • Crusoe considers that the footprint might have been the work of the devil, but concludes that a footprint really isn't the devil's style. He decides, then, that it must be from the "Savages" over on the mainland (131).
    • The freak-out continues over a period of days and weeks as Crusoe is overcome with fear. A religious crisis ensues, though eventually he realizes that he should submit to God's will. He reads accompanying scripture verses to calm down.
    • Crusoe convinces himself it could have been his own foot and goes about his chores and milks the goats. He then returns to the footprint and measure it against his own; that's when he realizes it must be the natives over on the mainland.
    • Terrified, Crusoe considers demolishing the enclosures, fields, and his summer home, but decides against it.
    • Crusoe reveals he is in his fifteenth year on the island; he decides that perhaps the natives often visited the island and that he should take precautions.
    • Crusoe builds a second fort from which to fire his guns, as if they were cannons.  He also moves his flock of goats around into a few different enclosures so the whole lot wouldn't be lost all at once.
    • Around this time, Crusoe sees what he takes to be a ship out at sea. Investigating further on shore, he finds piles of human remains: bones, skulls, and bodies. Sickened, he vomits.
    • Crusoe realizes that the natives are cannibals and probably visit this island from time to time to kill their enemies and eat them. Mind melt.
    • The humans-eating-humans stuff hits Crusoe pretty hard, and he thanks God that he wasn't born into a cannibal culture. Gratitude ensues.
    • We learn that Crusoe is in his eighteenth year on the island, and after the discovery of the cannibals, he is much more cautious and sticks to his "own Circle" (140). That is, his main house, country house, and the fort he built himself out in the woods.
    • Crusoe is much more cautious in his day-to-day activities and never goes abroad without two pistols and a sword.
    • Crusoe considers learning to brew beer, but gives up this plan (no supplies) and instead hatches a few plots against the cannibals.
    • Crusoe decides to ambush the cannibals and shoot them up with his considerable ammo. Crusoe watches for their ship daily, but soon begins to question this plan.
    • Crusoe starts to wonder if he should truly enact revenge upon the cannibals if they don't understand that what they're doing is wrong. He asks, "What Authority, or Call I had, to pretend to be Judge and Execution upon these Men as Criminals, whom Heaven had though fit for so many Ages to suffer unpunish'd" (144).
    • Crusoe soon realizes he is in the wrong and that to slay the cannibals would be just as bad as what the Spanish did to the natives in America.
    • Crusoe realizes that it is God's place, not his, to judge the practices of other cultures.
    • After this epiphany, Crusoe leads a retired and cautious life free from plotting against the cannibals. He's a bit melancholy from time to time, but always thankful to God and given to religious reflection.
    • Crusoe's activities tend toward ensuring his safety rather than hunting or gathering food. He relocates, for the most part, to his most secure abode: the fort in the woods.
    • One day, he's in the woods making charcoal, cutting away brush, when he finds a cave with a male goat dying in it. Crusoe uses the cave as a storage space for his extra guns and ammo. He also buries the goat.
    • Twenty three years have now gone by and Crusoe occupies himself with his many animal friends: Poll, his dog, the cats, the goats, the sea birds, etc.
    • In December, during the harvest, Crusoe sees the light of fire down on the sea shore. With the help of his handy spyglass, he sees nine naked savages sitting around the fire being cannibals (we don't really want to think too hard about what "being cannibals" involves).
    • They leave and Crusoe finds human remains at their fire pit down by the beach. Evil! He once again begins plotting the destruction of the natives.
    • Fifteen months go by, and the natives don't return. But Crusoe remains in the murdering mood and dreams of killing the men.
    • One day in May, Crusoe hears a gun fire at sea. A ship! He builds a fire to signal to the ship and the firing continues. The next day, Crusoe realizes that the ship is actually wrecked, having hit some rocks.
    • The firing has stopped and Crusoe realizes the men on the ship are dead. He is thrown into despair since he had come so darn close to human contact again – and to having someone to talk to. He is filled with regret. "O that it had been but One!" (159).
    • Days later, the body of a boy from the shipwreck washes up on the shore. Crusoe gets it into his head to take his boat out into the ocean to the wreck to search it.
    • After watching for the currents, Crusoe takes his little boat out to the wrecked ship. It's Spanish. There are no survivors, but he meets a dog (who he takes back with him to the island), along with two seaman's chests, a powder horn, and various odds and ends.
    • Back on shore, Crusoe finds a few useful items in the chests, along with gold – not a lot of use to him, but whatever. He puts it all in storage in his cave.
    • Two more years go by and things return to relative normalcy. Crusoe becomes obsessed with escaping the island instead of resigning himself to the Providence of God.
    • Around this time, twenty-four years on the island, Crusoe gets insomnia and begins reviewing the entirety of his life. He becomes fixated on the natives and convinced that he must travel over to the mainland.
    • Crusoe has an important dream in which the natives return to the island to eat one of their captives. The captive escapes and runs straight to Crusoe's little grove, where he kneels down before Crusoe. He becomes a servant and later a guide. He can take Crusoe to the mainland and help him escape.
    • After the dream, Crusoe becomes obsessed with possessing one of the natives (or their captives) in order to aid his own escape – as he did in the dream. He watches and waits for another year and a half.  This guy has developed some real patience by now
    • One morning, there are five canoes on the beach with thirty natives in all. They have two victims with them, one of whom escapes and manages to outrun his captors.
    • To assist the man, Crusoe grabs his guns. He knocks one of the man's pursuers out with his gun and shoots the other.
    • The saved man kneels at Crusoe's feet as if to swear to be Crusoe's "Slave for ever" (172).
    • Turns out one of the pursuers is actually not dead, so Crusoe's new friend cuts the guy's head off with a sword. (Whoa.) He buries the two bodies.
    • Crusoe and his new friend go to Crusoe's cave, where the man eats and sleeps. Crusoe watches him sleep and gives us a kind of creepily detailed description of his face, body, and clothes.
    • When the man awakes, Crusoe takes care of a few details: first, he names the man "Friday." Then he teaches the man how to say "Master" (174).  What a start.
    • Crusoe has to reform the man, who is a cannibal, so they return to the scene of the crime and he makes Friday burn the bones to ashes. No more eating flesh for you, Mr. Friday.
    • Crusoe also clothes Friday in attire similar to what Crusoe wears. He makes a little tent for Friday outside of Crusoe's fortifications, where he can sleep.
    • Their relationship, according to Crusoe, is "like those of a Child to a Father" (176).
    • Crusoe thinks about how, even though Friday and his people have not heard the word of God, Friday still seems to be capable of humanity: reason, affection, and kindness. Weird, huh?
    • Crusoe teaches Friday English and then blows Friday's mind a little more by shooting a bunch of different animals with a gun.
    • Crusoe feeds Friday boiled and roasted animal flesh, which Friday likes. (He's not a big salt fan, though.)
    • Crusoe puts Friday to work with more planting, and the two lead a happy existence.
    • Eventually, Crusoe hears Friday's story: he was a prisoner of war. His nation fought and won against Friday's captors, but Friday was still taken prisoner.
    • Crusoe also pumps Friday for info about the mainland.
    • Crusoe learns about Friday's native religion (he worships "Benamuckee") and decides to convert him to Christianity (182).
    • Crusoe teaches Friday about Jesus Christ, evil, and the devil. Friday has a difficult time with the concept of the devil and so the two enter into a theological debate. Friday wants to know why God would allow the devil to exist in the world.
    • Crusoe prays to God for help in answering Friday's questions. He realizes that in teaching Friday, he is also teaching himself. He is thankful for the opportunity. Soon enough, Friday becomes a good Christian (according to Crusoe's standards).
    • Crusoe tells Friday his own story of origin, shows him the mysterious gun and how to use it, and shows Friday the shipwreck from whence he came.
    • Friday tells Crusoe about a bunch of white men that the natives had saved from drowning. Crusoe guesses that these might be the men from the floundering ship. He learns that the men live in a truce with the natives. This might just be Crusoe's ticket off the island!
    • Crusoe is a little afraid that Friday might still be attached to his home nation, but he soon learns that Friday wants to return home only if Crusoe will come with him so the two can help convert his people to Christianity.  OK, then.
    • The two begin to build a large boat much like the last one Crusoe constructed but couldn't get into the water. They fell a tree and carve out its base. Crusoe also adds a mast, sail, anchor, and a rudder. The project takes several months.
    • Once the boat, is complete Crusoe teaches Friday how to sail.
    • The twenty-seventh anniversary of Crusoe's "captivity" on the island passes (193). He is thankful for God's mercies along the way.
    • The rainy season comes and the men wait for it to pass before setting out on their voyage. Crusoe prepares provisions.
    • Friday is out looking for turtles for the journey, when he sees three canoes on the island. Looks like it's cannibal time again!
    • Crusoe and Friday grab their weapons (guns, swords) and each take shots of rum.
    • Crusoe wonders whether it's right or not to go after the cannibals in this way, but turns out their prisoner is a European man. Guess that means it's OK to go after them.
    • A huge battle ensues in which Crusoe, with Friday following, set upon the cannibal men and fire guns at them.
    • In the battle, Crusoe manages to free one of the prisoners, who turns out to be a Spanish man.
    • Crusoe, Friday, and the Spanish prisoner kill seventeen of the cannibals, but four escape in their canoe. Fortunately, a big wind comes upon the ocean and it's doubtful whether the escaped cannibals even make it back to the mainland. (They don't.)
    • They also free a man from the cannibal's canoes, and guess who it turns out to be? Friday's own father! Serendipity-doo. Friday is very emotional about the whole thing, as is Crusoe.  We are too.
    • Crusoe and Friday give the former prisoners water and food. They build a tent for them, complete with beds.
    • Crusoe is tickled pink by these developments: "My Island was now peopled, and I thought my self very rich in Subjects; and it was a merry Reflection I frequently made, How like a King I look'd" (203).
    • They all dine together on goat stew. Crusoe asks Friday's dad if the natives will return in full force to take revenge, but the old man seems to think the natives will probably be too scared of the gunfire, thinking it to be the thunder and lightning of the gods.  Convenient.
    • Crusoe pumps the Spanish man for information about the mainland. He wants to know if the Europeans on the island have any means of escape (they don't), and if he can trust them to go along with his own scheme.
    • Crusoe is suspicious of the Spanish generally: "I had rather be deliver'd up to the <em>Savages,</em> and be devour'd alive, than fall into the merciless Claws of the Priests, and be carry'd into the <em>Inquisition</em>" (206).
    • The Spaniard assuages Crusoe's fears and says that the Spanish men would be thankful to Crusoe. To prove the point, he himself swears eternal allegiance to Crusoe.
    • The Spaniard also mentions that they should wait to bring the other Europeans over to the island until there's enough food and supplies for everyone. This is to quell any potential resistance or rebellion. Smart guy.
    • Everyone agrees and they plant more rice and barley. In the meantime, they also make planks, get more goats, and raisins. Eventually they increase the harvest from 22 bushels of barley to 220 bushels.
    • Finally the time has come to contact the other Europeans, and Crusoe sends the Spaniard and Friday's father as emissaries.
    • Eight days go by when Friday spots a boat. Is it them? No! It's an English longboat instead. Interesting.
    • Seeing as how there are no trade routes through here and no storms recently, Crusoe wonders what all this is about.
    • The boat hits land and we find out that there are eleven men on board, three of whom are prisoners who are being abused by the other men. Crusoe wonders how to free them.
    • The men explore the island and Crusoe, hearing the men talk, realizes they are English.
    • Crusoe waits until it's dark and gears himself and Friday up for a battle. Meanwhile, most of the boat's men straggle into the woods to nap. Crusoe sees the prisoners who are left under a tree.
    • Crusoe talks to prisoners first in Spanish, then in English. He lets them know he is their deliverer. He learns from the men that they are the victims of a mutiny. The three prisoners are the commander of the ship, his mate, and a passenger.
    • The three plot to take over the crew – there are two villains among them. Robinson Crusoe says he will help the men as long as they swear allegiance to him. So the captain swears his allegiance.
    • Crusoe lists his further conditions: that he is the ultimate authority on the island and that if the ship is recovered he'll get a trip back to England for free.
    • With all that agreed upon, Crusoe gives the men muskets. They attack the mutineers and kill two of the scoundrels. Three of the men beg for mercy, which is granted.
    • Three more men return and see the old captain and again submit to be prisoners.
    • Crusoe and the captain exchange stories. The captain is moved by Crusoe's tale as "tears ran down his Face, and he could not speak a word more" (217).
    • Crusoe give the captain and his men food and show them around his house.
    • They plot further: how can they get to the big ship back at sea? There are still 26 mutineers on board!
    • Eventually the men hit upon a plan. They know the other men will be landing on the shore soon.
    • They empty the longboat of provisions and put a hole on it. Then they hide.
    • Eventually ten armed men land on shore. The captain tells us that of the men, three are honest and the rest are "outragious" (219).
    • The captain and Crusoe debate whether or not to overtake them, the captain fearing they aren't powerful enough. Crusoe convinces him otherwise.
    • First, though, the former prisoners are sent with Friday to Crusoe's cave to be kept prisoner. Others are taken into the plan and join Crusoe and the captain.
    • The mutinous men finally land on shore, see the boat, and are totally surprised. They fire their guns and receive no answer.  They all get back on their boat.
    • The captain is surprised, but then the men return again to the shore. This time, though, they leave three men in the boat and send the other seven on shore to investigate.
    • When the men can't find anyone, they consult under a tree. Crusoe and the captain and their men wait in hiding.
    • Crusoe eventually cooks up a plan in which he has Friday yell and lure some of the men into the interior of the island. This leaves only a few men in the boat.
    • Crusoe and his gang then charge the boat and overtake the men there.
    • Got it.
    • After a while, the men Friday lured away return and are confused to find their boat a-ground. They obviously think the island is "inchanted" (224).  We can see how that would be creepy.
    • Crusoe and company wait, and eventually the captain is able to kill the ringleader.
    • They then parley and finally get the rest of the men to surrender by convincing them that they are surrounded by 50 men. They also call Crusoe the "Governour" of the island (225).
    • The men surrender, though Crusoe keeps himself out of sight. The fiction is impressed upon the men by the captain that Crusoe is an English man who is indeed governor of the island.
    • A little playacting goes a long way. More men are put in the cave and others, less risky ones, are taken to the bower.
    • The captain puts the men on trial and they are presented with the option of joining in the takeover of the ship or hanging in England. They pledge allegiance to Crusoe.
    • Five men are taken into service and five men are kept as hostages.
    • The expedition is set and the captain takes his men aboard the boat to seize it from the last remaining mutineers. On the boat, the mate shoots the new captain in the head. (Yes, we just grimaced too.)
    • Crusoe, still back on the island, goes to sleep that night, and when he wakes up he's declared new captain of the ship.
    • Crusoe is so shocked by the success of these plans that the captain has to pull out a "Dram of Cordial" to revive him (229).
    • The men present Crusoe with a number of gifts and bounty from the captured ship: cordial waters, wine, tobacco, pork, beef, peas, and most importantly, a new set of clothes.
    • Now the real question: what to do with the leftover prisoners? Crusoe is reluctant to bring them along on their voyage off the island.
    • Captain and Crusoe do a little more playacting, and by hanging the old captain up by the yard arm, the men eventually beg for mercy.
    • Crusoe leaves them on the island with instructions for survival, their chests, and a letter for the Spaniard who will soon return.
    • Finally, at long last, Crusoe leaves in his vessel on December 19, 1686, after being upon the island "eight and twenty Years, two Months, and 19 Days" (234). He arrives in England June 11, 1687. Home at last!
    • Back in England, Crusoe catches up with the widow whom he left in trust with his money. He gives her some compensation. He checks in on his family, too, but his father, mother, and pretty much whole family is dead.  Guess it had been a few decades.
    • The captain whose life he saved gives him 200 pounds sterling.
    • Cruse then decides to go to Lisbon with Friday (who accompanied him back to England, by the way) to check on his plantations in Brazil.
    • In Lisbon, he meets with the Portuguese captain he met on his journeys of off the coast of Africa all those years ago. The captain lets him know his plantations are on hold for him to be claimed.
    • His partner back in Brazil has given him money and it's on hold. Crusoe wonders why the Portuguese captain didn't get the holdings, since he was his universal heir, but the captain says it's because the death was not certain.
    • The captain does give him an account of first six years of his income, though.
    • Eventually Crusoe decides to check in with his plantation, and writes and then gets a packet from the trustees. The long and short of it is that Crusoe gets a lot of money from his plantation.
    • As Crusoe puts it: "I was now Master, all on a Sudden, of above 5000 l. Sterling in Money, and had an Estate, as I might well call it, in the <em>Brasils</em>, of above a thousand Pounds a Year, as sure as an Estate of Lands in <em>England</em>" (240)
    • He compensates the captain and helps the widow out too. (Notice Friday does not get any funds out of this.  But we digress.)
    • Now the question is where does Crusoe go from here? He decides not to go to his plantation in Brazil, but back to England to settle his affairs.
    • A long land journey thence commences from the continent (Europe) to England. The party consists of an English gentleman, some Portuguese gentlemen, and English merchants. Six guys total, plus five servants.
    • The party begins in Madrid and treks along. Friday is a little taken aback by the snow and mountains. They pick up a guide along the way.
    • During the journey they get attacked by wolves. They are able to defend themselves, however.
    • Friday also meddles with a bear and indulges in bear baiting, much to the amusement of Crusoe and his party.
    • The party encounters various wolves, resting along the way when the guide becomes sick.
    • Eventually they reach France, and then on to Calais and Dover on January 14th.
    • Crusoe considers going back to Lisbon briefly, but he is dissuaded.
    • Crusoe instead gets married and has "three Children, two Sons and one Daughter" (256).
    • Crusoe's wife dies much later (you know, a few paragraphs) and he takes another trip in 1694 and visits his "new Collony in the Island" to see the Spaniards and hear their stories (257). He leaves them with supplies and divides up the island, giving them each certain portions.
    • Crusoe also visits Brazil and decides to send some women back to the island for wives.
    • Crusoe ends his narrative with a promise of more adventures, perhaps to be told in a sequel.