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GLOSSARY / VOCABULARY LIST
ALLEGORY - A story in which characters, situations, and places have a significance beyond what they are themselves; characters, situations, and places that represent something or someone else; the aim of allegory is to teach or edify.
BALNIBARBI - An island ruled by the king of Laputa. Found in Part III.
BLEFUSCU - Lilliput's enemy. Blefuscu is an allegorical representation of France. Occurs in Part I.
BOLINGBROKE, HENRY ST. JOHN (1678-1751) - Tory leader.
BROBDINGNAG - Land of the giants visited by Gulliver in Part II.
BROBDINGNAGIANS - Inhabitants of Brobdingnag.
GEORGE I - Hanoverian king of England 1714-27; favored the Whigs. Satirized by Swift in Part I, allegorized by the Lilliputian emperor.
GLUBBDUBDRIB - Island of Sorcerers visited by Gulliver in Part III.
HOUYHNHNMS - Totally rational horses idealized by Gulliver in Part IV.
IRONY - A device in which the meaning of a statement or action is opposite to that which is presented.
LAPUTA - Flying island encountered by Gulliver in Part III. It is inhabited by foolish, wildly impractical visionaries.
LILLIPUT - Land visited by Gulliver in Part I; its inhabitants are six inches high.
LILLIPUTIANS - Inhabitants of the land of Lilliput.
LINDALINO - City that rebelled against Laputa; allegory for Dublin rebelling against England.
LUGGNAGG - Island Gulliver visits in Part III, home of the Struldbrugs, who are immortal.
MISANTHROPE - One who hates and/or avoids other people. Swift was accused of misanthropy; Gulliver actually is a misanthrope by the novel's end.
NARDAC - Tide of honor bestowed by the Lilliputian emperor on Gulliver after he seizes the Blefuscudian Fleet.
OXFORD, EARL OF - Robert Harley, Tory leader eventually ousted by Bolingbroke in 1714.
QUEEN ANNE - English queen 1702-14; last of the Stuart monarchs, favored the Tories.
SATIRE - A mocking attack against vices, stupidities, follies, with an aim to educate or edify.
STRULDBRUGS - A race of immortals who live in Luggnagg, found in Part III.
TORIES - One of two rival political parties in England. The Tories tended in Swift's time to support more wholeheartedly the Church of England, to support the monarchy in favor of the newer, merchant classes, and to be generally more conservative than the Whigs. Swift was a Tory from 1710 on.
WALPOLE, SIR ROBERT (1676-1745) - Whig prime minister 1715-17 and 1721-42. Swift's enemy.
WHIGS - One of two rival political parties in England. During Swift's time the Whigs tended to support the newer, merchant classes in favor of the monarchy and the gentry, were more in step with the Enlightenment, and were generally more liberal than the Tories.
YAHOOS - Odious humanoids Swift uses to allegorize the worst traits to be found in human nature.