Selkirk, Alexander

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Alexander Selkirk (sĕl´kərk), 1676–1721, Scottish sailor whose adventures suggested to Daniel Defoe the story of Robinson Crusoe (1719). In 1704, as a sailing master, Selkirk quarreled with the captain of his ship in the Juan Fernández islands and asked to be put ashore. He remained on Más a Tierra Island for four years and four months before he was rescued (Feb., 1709) by an English privateer.

See J. Howell, The Life and Adventures of Alexander Selkirk (1829).