Sailor, Deceased Person
1676 – 1721
Who was Alexander Selkirk?
An unruly youth, Selkirk joined buccaneering expeditions to the South Sea, including one commanded by William Dampier, which called in for provisions at the Juan Fernández Islands off Chile. Selkirk judged correctly that his craft, the Cinque Ports, was unseaworthy, and asked to be left there.
By the time he was rescued, he had become adept at hunting and making use of the resources he found on the island. His story of survival was widely publicised when he returned home, and became a likely source of inspiration for the writer Daniel Defoe's fictional character Robinson Crusoe.
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