“Treasure Island” is a classic adventure novel by Robert Louis Stevenson, first published in 1883. The book tells the story of a young boy named Jim Hawkins who, along with a group of sailors, sets out to find a treasure trove of gold and silver on a mysterious island. The villainous pirate in the book is a man named Long John Silver.
Long John Silver is a complex and multi-faceted character who serves as the novel’s primary antagonist. He is a one-legged pirate who is hired as the ship’s cook on the voyage to Treasure Island. However, it is soon revealed that he is also the leader of the band of revolutionary pirates who seek to claim the treasure for themselves. He is a villainous pirate whose charm and cunning make him a formidable opponent, while his contradictions and inner turmoil add depth to his character. He continues to be a source of fascination and inspiration for readers and fans of the novel.
Long John Silver is considered as one of the most iconic pirate characters in literature, and his character has been adapted in many forms of media like movies, television shows, and plays. His mixture of charm and villainy makes him a memorable character and a perfect representation of the classic pirate trope.
Win Over Trust and Loyalty of Sailors
One of Long John Silver’s character’s most notable aspects is his charm and charisma. Despite his criminal nature, he can win over the trust and loyalty of many sailors, including Jim Hawkins. This makes him a formidable opponent, as he can manipulate and deceive his enemies even as he plots against them.
Long John Silver is also portrayed as a man of many contradictions. He is ruthless and cunning but also has a sense of honor and loyalty to those he considers friends. He is a pirate but also a loving father to his son. This complexity makes him a fascinating and captivating character, and it is easy to understand why Jim Hawkins is both drawn to and terrified of him.
Greed and Ambition
In addition to his role as a villain, Long John Silver also serves as a commentary on the nature of greed and ambition. His desire for the treasure on Treasure Island consumes him, and he is willing to do whatever it takes to claim it for himself, even if it means betraying and killing his own crew. His ultimate downfall results from his inability to control his greed and desire for power.
Long John Silver’s portrayal as a one-legged man also adds to the complexity of his character. His physical disability is not simply a plot device but also a reminder of the fragility of human life and the consequences of one’s actions. He uses his crutch as a weapon and his disability is not portrayed as a weakness but something that makes him more determined and resourceful.
The relationship between Long John Silver and Jim Hawkins is also a major aspect of the novel. Silver serves as a father figure to Jim, and their relationship is a complex one, with moments of warmth and trust as well as betrayal and hostility. This relationship adds to the novel’s emotional depth and provides a strong contrast to the more straightforward relationship between Jim and the other sailors.
Long John Silver’s Downfall
In the end, Long John Silver’s greed and ambition leads to his downfall, as he is ultimately defeated by Jim and the sailors who were loyal to him. He is left behind on the island, stranded and alone, and Jim and the sailors eventually recover the treasure.
Overall, Long John Silver is a memorable and enduring character whose actions and motivations continue to be studied and analyzed by readers and literary critics alike. His role as the villainous pirate in “Treasure Island” adds a thrilling and dangerous element to the story, and his complexity and contradictions make him a fascinating and compelling character. His influence on the pirate genre is undeniable, and he will be remembered as one of the most iconic and memorable pirate characters in literature.