Butterworth Stavely is a fictional character in Mark Twain's 1879 story "The Great Revolution in Pitcairn". He is an American adventurer and filibuster who instigates a coup d'état and has himself crowned Butterworth I, Emperor of Pitcairn's Island.
|Created by||Mark Twain|
Twain based his story on one sentence in a naval report by Admiral Algernon Frederick Rous de Horsey: "One stranger, an American, has settled on the island – a doubtful acquisition", which probably referred to Peter Butler, a survivor of the 1875 Khandeish shipwreck. The story was probably also inspired by the life of Joshua Hill, a real-life American dictator of Pitcairn in the 1830s.
Stavely rises to political power by exploiting the internal divisions and suspicions surrounding a lawsuit between Thursday October Christian II and Elizabeth Mills Young waged over a trespassing chicken. His machinations lead to the impeachment of the chief magistrate James Russell Nickoy, Stavely's election as magistrate, a revolt against the "galling English yoke", and his coronation as emperor.
- Brown, Robert (c. 1879). The countries of the world. Cassell, Petter, Galpin & Co. p. 79. Retrieved August 11, 2012.
- Gidmark, Jill B. (2001). Encyclopedia of American literature of the sea and Great Lakes. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press. p. 359. ISBN 0-313-30148-4. Retrieved January 19, 2010.
- LeMaster, J. R.; James D. Wilson (1993). The Mark Twain Encyclopedia. New York and London: Garland Publishing. pp. 340–341. ISBN 0-8240-7212-X. Retrieved January 2, 2010.
- Twain, Mark (1879). "The Great Revolution in Pitcairn". The Atlantic Monthly. 43 (257): 295–302. Archived from the original on July 14, 2012. Retrieved January 2, 2010.