Gulliver’s Travels: Part 2, Chapters 3-4

Okay, so the beginning of this starts out a little heartless and morbid on the giants’ part. Gulliver begins to grow thin from traveling so much, and the giant who takes him everywhere decides to get as much money out of Gulliver before he dies… Rude. Meanwhile, an order comes from the court, commanding the farmer to bring Gulliver to the queen for her entertainment. She’s very pleased with him and buys Gulliver for 1,000 gold pieces. Gulliver requests that Glumdalclitch be allowed to live in the palace as well. Gulliver explains his suffering to the queen, and she is impressed by his intelligence. The king, when she takes Gulliver to him, thinks that the small person is a mechanical creation, and he sends for scholars to come observe him. They declare that he is unfit to survive; Gulliver tries to explain that he’s from a world in proportion to him, but the scholars don’t believe him.

The Queen grows fond of Gulliver’s company. She likes the way he eats, and he hates the way she swallows so much food. He’s made living quarters out of a box and clothes from silk; he finds them cumbersome. Glumdalclitch is also given an apartment and a governess.

The king converses with Gulliver on issues of politics, and laughs at his descriptions of the goings-on in Europe. He finds it amusing that people of such small stature should think themselves so important, and Gulliver is at first offended. He then comes to realize that he too has begun to think of his world as ridiculous.

The Queen’s dwarf, once the smallest man in the kingdom, is not happy with Gulliver. He drops Gulliver into a bowl of cream, but Gulliver is able to swim to safety and the dwarf is punished.

In chapter four, Gulliver is looking at Brobdingnag, thinking that Europe must have their maps wrong because the land stretched at least 6,000 miles. It is bordered by mountains and more sea than land; the water is so rough that there is no trade with other nations. The rivers are well stocked with giant fish, but the fish in the sea are of the same size as those in the rest of the world—and therefore not worth catching.

Throughout the rest of the chapter, Gulliver is carried around and shown the sights. People always crowd around to see him. He asks to see the largest temple in the country and is not overwhelmed by its size, since at a height of 3,000 feet it is proportionally smaller than the largest steeple in England.


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