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Gulliver’s Travels Summary

5 min read ⌚ 

Gulliver’s Travels PDFAre you ready for an unusual adventure?

Then, Gulliver is the man you should be traveling with!

And that is exactly what we are offering here – a spot on Gulliver’s ship, to accompany him on his voyages.

Who Should Read “Gulliver’s Travels”? And Why?

“Gulliver’s Travels” is a story that follows the travels, of Gulliver, who ends up visiting several strange destinations populated with creatures unknown to humanity, and learns something about the world – and about himself in the process.

It is one of those books that people enjoy no matter their age.

Young readers will enjoy its fantastic appeal, and all the interesting adventures Gulliver goes through, while adults will find appeal in all the ways it parodies the political life in Swift’s England.

Jonathan Swift Biography

Jonathan SwiftJonathan Swift was an Anglo-Irish writer and satirist. His satirical style of expression has later become known as Swiftian.


“Gulliver’s Travels” is an adventure story, consisting of several books, which follow the voyages of a ship’s surgeon named Gulliver. On his journeys with the ship, Gulliver always ends up instead of at his destination – on different islands, unknown to humanity, living with unusual people and creatures like he had never encountered before.

Gulliver always manages to return home to England, where he goes back to his ordinary life until he goes on a new trip.

The first book of the series tells the adventure Gulliver has on the island of Lilliput.

This is one of those stories that has been adapted into children’s cartoons. In fact, the first time I heard about Gulliver was through this cartoon, about very small people (about six inches tall) who captured this man who came to their island, and how he helped them solve the issues they faced in their country.

However, when he refuses to use his size to enslave the citizens of Blefuscu, the enemy island across Lilliput, he is considered an enemy and therefore is forced to flee to Blefuscu.

There, he takes a massive warship and sails away. He is eventually rescued when he comes across an English merchant ship, which returns him to his home in England.

The second book tells a story about an utterly contrary situation: this time Gulliver and his small team, who go to an island to find water, face giants. His crew manages to escape, but Gulliver is captured and left behind.

However, just like in the case of the Lilliputians, Gulliver is treated with kindness, as he is taken to one farmer’s home, who gives him to his daughter to care for him.

She is compassionate, but curious at the same time.

Since he is nothing like the Giants have seen before, they take him on tour around the country to show them to their “people.”

Their curiosity is so big that the farmer manages to sell him to the Queen and King.

The King is interested in Gulliver’s country and the customs of people, so he spends a great deal of time with him, discussing these subjects he is interested in.

In many instances, the King expresses his shock at the selfish behavior of people that Gulliver describes to him.

Gulliver, however, does not agree and defends his people.

Then, one day, Gulliver is sitting in his portable room and looking at the sea, when a giant eagle snatches him and drops him into the water.

That is when a ship notices him and rescues him, again, just like in the first book.

In the third book Gulliver adventurers off to the Flying Island named Laputa. He meets some of the people that live there which as he notices are obsessed with music, mathematics, and astronomy. The astronomers use the laws of physics – magnetism to be exact, to control the movement of the island.

By the end of the book, he passes through Japan, and Amsterdam, and eventually arrives home.

In the last, fourth book, Gulliver is sailing to Barbados. On this trip a few crew members die of illness, so he hires a few men to replace them in Barbados.

It turns out that the recruited members are pirates, and in the end, they take over the ship and leave him on one island.

Can you guess what happens here?

Well, of course, he is discovered by the island’s inhabitants – ugly creatures that look like humans and are called Yahoos. The Yahoos attack him by defecating him from the top of the trees.

But they are not the only ones that live there – a fact that he finds out after he is saved by a horse named Houyhnhnm. The horse takes him to his house and introduces him to his family.

What Gulliver realizes in that incident is that he and the Yahoos are practically the same animals and that he (they) are considered uncivilized in this world he came by.

In fact, although he enters into long discussions with the horse that saved him about the evolution and underlying concepts of the Yahoo society, and the horse favors him, the kingdom decides that he is, in fact, a Yahoo, and as such should either live with the Yahoos or go back to his country.

Gulliver, of course, decides to leave for his homeland. He builds a canoe and sails for the nearby island where he is found by the Portuguese ship, which saves him.

Gulliver’s Travels Epilogue

After the fourth story, Gulliver feels that his notions about his world have not only been challenged but changed as well. He views society as a group of “civilized” Yahoos and is deeply repelled even by his own family.

So, since he feels much more comfortable around horses, he buys two of them and spends most of his time conversing with them and caring for them.

However, amidst the tranquility of his equine companionship, Gulliver experiences moments of profound contemplation.

Reflecting upon his journeys, he realizes that the boundaries between civilization and savagery are not as distinct as he once believed. His encounters with diverse societies, each with their own customs and norms, have blurred these lines irreversibly.

In his solitude, Gulliver pens down his experiences, hoping to impart the wisdom he has gained to future generations.

His memoirs serve as a testament to the complexity of human nature and the inexhaustible mysteries of the world.

Through his writings, he seeks not only to document his adventures but to provoke introspection and critical thought in those who follow in his footsteps.

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“Gulliver’s Travels Summary Quotes”

Every man desires to live long, but no man wishes to be old. Click To Tweet I cannot but conclude that the Bulk of your Natives, to be the most pernicious Race of little odious Vermin that Nature ever suffered to crawl upon the Surface of the Earth. Click To Tweet Undoubtedly, philosophers are in the right when they tell us that nothing is great or little otherwise than by comparison. Click To Tweet The tiny Lilliputians surmise that Gulliver's watch may be his god, because it is that which, he admits, he seldom does anything without consulting. Click To Tweet Difference in opinions has cost many millions of lives: for instance, whether flesh be bread, or bread be flesh; whether the juice of a certain berry be blood or wine. Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

As a kid, I used to love the story of Gulliver, the man in the land of the Lilliputians. Of course, at that time I had only watched the cartoon and did not know the whole story.

Now that I am an adult, and I have read the book, I have to say that I even enjoyed it more.

As years passed by I became less of a lover of adventure stories, but nevertheless, I couldn’t help but become a part of Gulliver’s journey, which sheds some light on the nature of our society.

It is a great book indeed!

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