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Map of Tobago

Map of Tobago

Robinson Crusoe and Tobago

A writer from the early 20th century, A. Hyatt Verrill argued that Tobago was the inspiration for Robinson Crusoe:

'Perhaps you may think that Robinson Crusoe's island should be included among the fabulous islands; but Robinson Crusoe's island was very real, for the original of the story was the little island of Tobago, just to the north of the mouth of the Orinoco. If anyone doubts this let him read his thumb-worn tale of De Foe's again with care. Does not Crusoe state how they were bound for the Barbados? Does he not describe the course they took after they were driven from their route by storm? Does he not mention the current and the muddy waters of the river "Oronoque"? Does he not speak of the Caribs who came to his island and left Man Friday? All this and much more proves beyond doubt that Crusoe led his lonely life on Tobago, and if anyone questions it let him travel to lovely Tobago and he will find it just as described. He may see Crusoe's cave; he will see the descendants of Robinson's goats upon the hills; he will find the very beach upon which Man Friday left his footprint, and if he takes the word of the native guide, he will see Crusoe's own footprints still preserved in the limestone rock of the island!

'But while all this is so, yet it it is Juan Fernandez which has become famous as Crusoe's isle, for islands, like people, often get credit which belong to others.'

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