Tag Archives: Gulliver’s Travels

A Man’s Gar Glob Stop

A Man’s Gar Glob Stop…is really Anagrams Blog Post.  Annagrams are not my thing.  I need some extra help with this part of GT.

According to my college dictionary, an anagram “is a word or phrase formed by reordering the letters of another word or phrase.”  This definition did not help me at all in deciphering the anagrams of Gulliver’s Travels

For example according to the notes at the end of my novel: Mildendo, Lorbrulgrud, Lagado, and Maldonada are all supposed to be anagrams of London.

Is there an M in the word London?  No!  There is also no G and no B. 
So, it’s a good thing I had all those end notes

Another definition I found said that an anagram is “a type of verbal play in which a word or phrase is formed by rearranging the letters of another word or phrase, such as changing united to untied.”  Now we’re getting closer.  But it seems like Swift was doing a lot of playing.  He also seems to be following rules of which I am not aware.

In Part III, chapter VI, Gulliver is visiting the Academy of Lagado.  He explains to a professor that when people are suspected of plotting against a kingdom, their personal papers are “delivered to a set of Artists very dextrous in finding out the mysterious Meanings of Words, Syllables, and Letters.”  He goes on to give examples of Acrostics and Anagrams.

“So for example, if I should say in a Letter to a Friend, Our Brother Tom has just got the Piles, a skilful Decipherer would discover that the same Letters which compose that Sentence, may be analysed into the following Words; Resist, a Plot is brought Home, The Tour. And this is the Anagrammatic Method.” (Part III, chapter VI)

The footnote on that quote says that “to make the anagram work, the letters i and j must be taken as equivalent, as they usually were at this time.”

Ummm.  That still doesn’t explain why in another place in the novel Glubbdubdrib is supposed to be Dublin.  And Lindalino is Dublin too.

I think I’ll rely on my end notes and let the other websites deal with Swift’s Anagrammatic Method. 

And you thought Classic Case of Madness was a niche blog.

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Posted by on September 24, 2011 in Gulliver's Travels


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Laputa and Balnibarbi

The floating island of Laputa hovers over the island of Balnibarbi.  A loadstone in the make up of Laputa allows it to float.  “By means of this Loadstone, the Island is made to rise and fall, and move from one place to another.”  Passengers may want to shut off all computer devises while flying over this area.  That powerful loadstone can make an entire island hover 4 miles off the ground.  I’m not sure what kind of damage it would do to your Blackberry.

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Posted by on September 22, 2011 in Gulliver's Travels


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Laputa, Balnibarbi, Luggnagg, Glubbdubdrib, and Japan

Fellow travelers, if you will look out the left-side windows, you’ll see a cluster of islands.  It is in this part of the world that Gulliver began his third voyage.  Our poor hero’s ship was attacked by pirates.  These evil men forced him into a canoe and set him adrift.  It is during this time that Gulliver experienced life on a floating island,  He observed local people in intense scientific experiments.  The ruler of one area allowed him to speak with the dead.  Meeting immortals, changed our main characters feelings about living forever.  At one point Lemuel Gulliver had to impersonate a Dutchman.  Our main character sure earned his five passport stamps on this journey.

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Posted by on September 17, 2011 in Gulliver's Travels


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Politics Transformed!

New political ideas just in from Balnibarbi!   I think they would revolutionize America.  Local politician not listening to your ideas?  Well, feel free to pull his nose or give him a swift kick!  Continue to do so every time you state your request until he complies.   Opposing political parties who can’t agree?   Well, simply match the opponents according to height, cut each one’s cranium delicately in two, and give each one 1/2 of the other’s brain.  With two opposing sides combined in one space, they would surely come to agreement quickly!   Need to raise money for your government?   Place a tax on vices and follies. – Oh wait! – We’ve done that already, right?  Cigarettes, anyone?  So, instead, Balnibarbi suggests taxing those who excel in sex appeal, wit, valor, fashion sense or politeness.   “To whom much has been given, much shall be required.”   Elected officials seem to be more chosen for their money or popularity than for their common sense or results?  Try having raffle-style elections and leave it all up to Fate.     Revolutionary ideas!  What say you?

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Posted by on September 14, 2011 in Gulliver's Travels



Brobdingnag: the illustration’s end note

Yesterday I shared with you the original illustrated map for Brobdingnag.  Did you happen to notice that the plate had an end note?  Let me share that note with you.

New Albion was the old name for California and some of the other names are Californian; the Straits of Annian correspond perhaps to San Francisco Bay, but the scatological implication of the name is clearer.

Scatological?  Scat?  like animal droppings?  Take a second look at the illustration.  Can you find the Straights of Annian?  What does the area look like?  

I’ll use the word that’s allowed at our house.  Bum.  It’s a giant bum!  I can’t get away from the bathroom humor in this book, so today I’ll embrace it and share with you this song from the tv show Scrubs.   Christina, if the ban is still in place, don’t click on the link.


Posted by on September 12, 2011 in Gulliver's Travels


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Now we’re flying over the country of Brobdingnag.  Normally when one looks out the window of an aircraft, he thinks that people on the ground look like ants.  Because of their tremendous size, the people of Brobdingnag look like people–even from the air.  Lemuel Gulliver was stranded on the shore of Brobdingnag when his vessel made an exploratory trip to replenish water supplies.  Please remain seated as we fly over this country.  The proportionally large weather may cause the aircraft to experience some turbulence.

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Posted by on September 11, 2011 in Gulliver's Travels


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They’re back.

Oh, Roman Numerals, how I’ve missed you.  Can it be?  The largest number in Gulliver’s Travels is XII ?  Pish-posh.  How fun is that?  Oh, for the days of Don Quixote when chapters went up to LXXIV… 

Right.  Maybe I don’t miss those big letter-numbers after all.

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Posted by on September 9, 2011 in Gulliver's Travels


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