Gulliver's Travels, or Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World, is Published

In chapter twenty-one of Brontë's novel, Jane Eyre decides to respond to the wishes of her dying Aunt Reed and return to her childhood home of Gateshead Hall. White glancing over the bookcases of the breakfast room, Jane recognizes that her most treasured novel, Gulliver's Travels, has remained where she last placed it (Brontë ch. 21). Gulliver's Travels was originally published on the twenty-eighth of October in 1726 with the title Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World, and it was presented to have been a factual narrative written "by Lemuel Gulliver, first a surgeon, and then a captain of several ships (qtd. in "First Edition of Gulliver's Travels"). Jonathan Swift wrote the novel's four parts over a span of five years, drafting the first part in 1721-22, the second in 1722-23, the fourth in 1723, and the third part after them all in 1724-25 (Ehrenpreis 1957). The novel is considered to be a political satire of eighteenth-century English culture, and as such, it was met with much praise as well as much critique. Jane Eyre's repeated mention of the novel becomes incredibly significant when marking Jane's personal growth and her relation to the society that Brontë has mirrored. Brontë's inclusion of Swift's novel places Jane Eyre well within the bounds of England's literary society; only an educated woman would devote her time to the satirical masterpiece that is Gulliver's Travels. When Eyre recognizes her favorite novels on the bookcase, she notes that "the inanimate objects were not changed; but the living things had altered past recognition" (Brontë ch. 21). The physical existence of the novel reminds her of the life that she has lived and the changed woman that she has become. Though the novels have not changed, the woman that once read them has transformed. 


Works Cited

Ehrenpreis, Irvin. "The Origins of Gulliver's Travels." PMLA, vol. 72, no.5, 1957, pp. 880-99. JSTOR, Accessed 13 June 2022. 

"First Edition of Gulliver's Travels, 1726." The British Library's%20Gulliver's%20Travels,Remote%20Nations%20of%20the%20World. Accessed 13 June 2022. 

"Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World...By Lumuel Gulliver." ABE Books, Accessed 13 June 2022. 

Associated Place(s)

Event date:

28 Oct 1726

Parent Chronology: