In Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift, Swift describes Gulliver, a ship's doctor sailing and getting ship wrecked in various locations by various means. However, he does not go into as much detail in the actual description of sailing as he does other actions.

Was this because Swift hadn't sailed much or at all?

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    Do you mean to ask whether Swift had sailed as a traveller on a sailing ship, or as a sailor? – Gaurav Jan 23 '17 at 20:20

Swift certainly had sailed before, probably many times. An easy example is from Great Britain to Ireland and back.

Swift was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1667. In 1688, he had to leave for Moor Park in England due to political troubles in Ireland. He made many visits to Ireland while living in England, mostly due to his health. He finally retired to Scotland again in 1700.

As this picture so helpfully shows, it's impossible to get from Great Britain to Ireland without the aid of a plane, jet ski or other flying or water transportation.


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  • So he'd been on a ship many times, but did he have any more practical experience? There's a big difference between sitting in one's cabin on a ferry and actually helping to sail it. – Rand al'Thor Jan 26 '17 at 12:46
  • @Randal'Thor He sailed so many times that I think it's impossible he didn't have at least a basic knowledge of how boats worked. – user72 Jan 26 '17 at 14:38

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