Mystery of Alexander Selkirk, the real Robinson Crusoe, solved

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It may have taken nearly 300 years but archaeologists have finally confirmed the campsite of castaway Alexander Selkirk, thought to be the inspiration for Robinson Crusoe.

Cast away on a desert island, surviving on what nature alone can provide, praying for rescue but at the same time fearing the sight of a boat on the horizon.

These are the imaginative creations of Daniel Defoe in his famous novel Robinson Crusoe.

But the story is believed to be based on the real-life experience of Scottish sailor Selkirk, marooned in 1704 on a small tropical island in the Pacific for more than four years, and now archaeological evidence has been found to support his existence on the island.

An article in the journal Post-Medieval Archaeology claims that an archaeological dig on the Argentinian island of Aguas Buenas, 470 miles off the Chilean coast, reveals evidence of the campsite of an early European occupant.

The most compelling evidence is the discovery of a fragment of a pair of navigational dividers which could only have belonged to a ship's master or navigator, which historical evidence suggests Selkirk must have been.

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