Robert Louis Stevenson, 1850-1894  Stevenson and Fanny on the Marquesas Islands

In the South Seas

In 1887, after the death of his father, Robert Louis Stevenson left for the United States once more. This time he was accompanied by his family.

The following year, in yet another attempt to find good health, he chartered a yacht and set sail for the South Seas. He immediately took to life on board ship, which he had earlier portrayed so vividly in his books.

'I slept that night, as was then my somewhat dangerous practice, on deck upon the cockpit bench. A stir at last awoke me, to see all the eastern heaven dyed with faint orange, the binnacle lamp already dulled against the brightness of the day, the steersman leaning eagerly across the wheel. "There it is, sir!" he cried, and pointed in the very eyeball of the dawn.
'For a while I could see nothing but the bluish ruins of the morning bank, which lay far along the horizon, like melting icebergs. Then the sun rose, pierced a gap in these debris of vapours, and displayed an inconsiderable islet, flat as a plate upon the sea, and spiked with palms of disproportioned altitude.'
 Marquesas Islands photo 'The Casco' yacht
South Seas travels map
 A Samoan beach



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