Free Study Guide for Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson-BookNotes|
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Nobody dares challenge the Captain until, one afternoon, Dr. Livesey was visiting Jimís father who had recently become ill. He was waiting to see him, chatting with old Taylor on a new cure for rheumatics. He hears the Captain singing his song. Paying little heed to the song, he continues his conversation, which irritates the Captain who has demanded everyone's silence. Countering the Captainís shout in the most gentlemanly way, the Doctor makes him aware of the bad effects of drinking and indirectly calls him a scoundrel. Even when the Captain threatens him with a knife, the doctor maintains his composure. Responding to the threat, the doctor makes the Captain aware that he is liable to be punished for disturbing the peace. He concludes with a warning that the Captain will be under constant observation, as he (the doctor) is also a magistrate. The Captain, for the first time, is defeated.
As this story was written for a young boy, Stevenson has taken utmost care in building the character of the protagonist. He includes all the essential qualities that are required to make Jim Hawkins a model for all the young readers. In the opening line of the story the author introduces Jim as an obedient boy. Combining this with the curious nature of a youngster, the author sets the tone for the whole book.
While developing the plot of the book, Stevenson introduces us to two of the main characters and their characteristics: Jim Hawkins and the Captain.
Jim, as the narrator, tells the reader about the arrival of the brown old seaman at the Admiral Benbow. As the title of the chapter suggests, this chapter is a detailed recording of the incidents that takes place at the Admiral Benbow after the arrival of the Captain. From the very first glance, Jim says, he takes a dislike towards the old man with his old sea chest whistling and singing to himself. Jim gets to know more about him when he settles down at the Inn. At first, he finds him to be a silent loner who rarely speaks to anybody. As a drunk, the only company he seeks is rum. However his opinion changes with time and he begins to find the old man quite tyrannizing and eccentric after drinking. Jim also finds out that he is on the lookout for the seafaring man with one leg, a strange description that haunts Jim in his dreams.
A youngsterís desire to possess money is established early by Stevenson when Jim accepts a part time job of keeping an eye for the "seafaring man with one leg."
Jim observes the old manís poverty. He forms his opinion about him being rude and tyrannizing when he refuses to pay rent to his father. Jim also grows inquisitive about the old sea chest, which always remains locked. He finds the old man cautious but fearless, at least until he encounters Dr. Livesey. His verbal confrontation with the doctor proves that the old man is fearful of the law.
When the first chapter ends, many qualities of the old man are described through his deeds, but his past, his intention of staying at the Inn, and the contents of his sea chest is kept a mystery. The quality of Jim as very keen observer is also clearly depicted. To maintain the mysterious environment that the author has created, he leaves the reader pondering over many unanswered questions.
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TheBestNotes.com Staff. "TheBestNotes on Treasure Island".
. 09 May 2017