Gulliver's Travels

Why was balnibarbi in ruins and lagado prosperous?

Part 2 ch 4

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Lord Munodi's estates are beautiful while Balnibarbi is in ruins. Scientists from Balnibarbi went to Laputa and rejected old ways of farming and land management. These reforms actually destroyed the land.

Lord Munodi's estates were beautiful, well cultivated and seemed prosperous-totally opposite of the Balnibarbi lands. Munodi had left his orchards, fields and home in the old model of his forefathers, while the rest of the Balnibarbi had gone over to new ideas of farming and management. The people who had gone to Laputa, returned with new ideas about mathametics and art but all their calculations didn't actually work. The new techniques left the country in ruin.