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Watercolour of Buckingham House's East Library
The Libraries of George III

George III was a keen bibliophile


A voyage to the south sea ... for the purpose of conveying the bread-fruit tree to the West Indies


RCIN 1142197

In 1787, William Bligh undertook a voyage with HMS Bounty to collect breadfruit from Tahiti and transport it to the Caribbean. If successful, its cultivation was intended to provide a staple food source for the plantations there.

Bligh and his crew arrived in Tahiti in October 1788 and stayed until April 1789. Following their departure, the ship underwent a mutiny, during which Bligh and loyal crew members were set adrift. Miraculously surviving being castaway, Bligh returned to Britain in 1790 and was acquitted from a court martial investigating the loss of the ship. He published this account of the voyage in 1792.

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