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51

Rum was easily obtained in the sugarcane rich Caribbean and olden day South Seas Pirates, who would drink anything they could get their hands on if it had a kick, were associated with the drinking of rum. So, while they would drink other forms of liquor if they could obtain it, the average Pirate crew member drank what he could afford, and that's what made ...


42

The creation and expansion of European empires during the Age of Discovery resulted in the expansion of trade routes to new colonies and trading posts across the world. The vast areas of these trade routes were far larger than the new empires' navies could effectively police, which meant that merchant vessels moving along them were essentially responsible ...


29

Arrr, tharr niver has been an orgarrrnization o'pirates in t'traditional sense. Tharr may well ha' been brief alliarrrnces o' convenyence, for when ye can trust a man no to make ye walk the plank, ye may help each other in gathering in the booty! Also now an' then a Cap'n of dark renown might set up his followers as minor cap'ns in their own right, and so ...


27

I don't think that it is possible to generalise. I don't doubt that ancient pirates did re-purpose civilian ships in most cases. Indeed, it is said that even sailors on merchant ships which had been attacked by pirates would turn to piracy themselves when they were otherwise out of work. In fact, the number of vessels reportedly used for piracy by the ...


27

Historical evidence suggests, and I am writing from the wiki article of origin of Rum, that during the late 16th and early 17th century, sugarcane plantation slaves in the Caribbean islands discovered a byproduct of sugar-making i.e. Molasses can be converted to an alcoholic beverage. After fine tuning the distillation process they produced the refined Rum. ...


18

Origins and availability or the drink aside (this was covered by Rico and the Major already)... life on a sailing ship was hard. Especially ships prepared for combat -- like a navy's warships -- had large crews, which made for very cramped living and no privacy. The work aboard was hard and dangerous, and that's before the guns were run out to engage an ...


16

Its been two years since this question was scribed, and nobody else be bringn' it up, so perhaps now be th' time to be tellin' th' tale o' th' Red Flag Fleet. It be also th' tale o' Cheng I Sao, th' pirate queen o' th' South China Sea. Cheng originally got into th' business by th' traditional method: being captured by pirates. She hit it off well enough ...


11

Le Cerf Volant, a 14-gun warship, was probably captured in late December 1668 (New Style date) by Edward Collier while commanding the Oxford. Collier seized the French ship at Cow island while it was anchored not far from Morgan's ship. According to Dudley Pope in Harry Morgan's Way: The Biography Of Sir Henry Morgan 1635-1688 (2013), Sir Thomas Modyford, ...


9

Keep in mind that "heavy military ships" were rare -- most galleys were triremes or smaller designs -- biremes, penteconters, liburna. Their construction was well within the capabilities of small ports, and manning them took 50 or so crew -- also within the capabilities of small ports and pirate bands. They only had to be faster than merchant ships, and just ...


9

Privateering is a tool of international conflict Read wikipedia; until forbidden by international law, privateering was a tool of international cold war. France encouraged the corsairs against Spain, and later Britain and Holland supported them against France. By the second half of the 17th century the greater European naval powers were able to strike ...


8

Like much legistation, the role of the letter of marque evolved from it's initial inception to it's eventual demise. The original purpose of the letter of marque and reprisal (to use the full title), was to allow subjects the ability to gain their own 'recompense' for injuries inflicted on them by foreign powers without the need for the states to go to war....


5

As near as I can find, the Cour Volant was captured by Edward Collier in December 1668 at the Isle à la Vache, off the harbour of Aux Cayes in Hispaniola. Collier was, at that point commander of the frigate, Oxford, having been given command in early November 1668. The Oxford was blown up, and Collier took the newly named Satisfaction as his flagship in ...


5

Four. At least known captures, and these were by British privateers. The Dutch were also engaged with the Spanish treasure fleet at times (Battles of La Naval de Manila), but it appears these actions resulted in the sinking , (but not the capture) of several ships in or near Manila (see article The Manila Galleons, by Steve Singer) From the article on ...


5

The description of the print on the British Museum site includes the following explanation of that part of the picture: The scene is on the coast near the Channel. Across the water is 'Shakespeare's Cliff', rising in a curve to a mound on which sits in a chair a fat John Bull laughing at the spoliation. In the middle distance, by the French shore, is ...


5

The pirates used the "same" ships as everyone else. Or at least similar types such as galleys. In those times, there was (practically) no such thing as "heavy" or dedicated military ships. (OK, a few large ships carried extra (wooden) "armor" or "rams.") This was before the existence of cannon, or other "missile" weapons for warships that set them apart ...


5

The Victual brothers, a fourteenth and fifteenth century group first organised to aid King Albert when he tried to defend against Queen Margaret in a war for the Swedish crown. They can arguably have been said to have started as a band of privateers, but when Albert was forced to make peace and give up his crown, they continued their piracy without any ...


5

The statue/monument to Drake is modern, and apparently was commissioned by the municipality of Coquimbo sometime in the last 30 years. The nearby City of La Serena was opposed to building a statue to honor a "pirate", but Coquimbo credits him with visiting the bay (there are hundreds of bays/beaches named Herradura in South America - it just means "...


4

On this page it describes the bay thusly: The city of Coquimbo is a source of legends of hidden treasures, due to that in the past centuries was assaulted by pirates and corsairs. In the year 1578 the English corsair Francis Drake discovered La Herradura (horse shoe) bay and called this way for its shape. Since that very same moment, the bay became a ...


4

The pirates, as well as regular navy sailors drank what was available. For example, the British sailors had regular rations of beer or wine. When this was not available, they drank rum or whatever was available. As rum was produced in large quantities in the Caribbean, it was the most common alcoholic drink there. As the most common pirates in the popular ...


3

De Americaensche zee-roovers In 1678 Alexandre Olivier Exquemelin published "De Americaensche zee-roovers". A reprint of the original Dutch text can be found at The Digital Library for Dutch Literature (DBNL) I'm not sure whether a literal translation of zee-roover is sea-robber or just sea-rover. At least one English translation has parts written in the ...


3

Courtesy of a bit of a phase of mine where I was inexplicably interested in the topic of mutiny I've done a fair bit of reading on the subject and I have to say I'm not aware of this ever having happened and to be honest I don't think it's particularly likely. I have to say though that even if it did happen it's exceptionally unlikely that we would have a ...


3

There were made efforts to end the Barbary pirate raids. The only problem in this picture is that you are seeing England, France, Spain and the Netherlands (my country) as fully developed countries which in that time they were not. Civilians were not important and losses were just part of the risk a sailer had to take. The big sailing companies had no ...


3

I know this question is very old but I thought it deserved an answer because the speculation is quite inaccurate. Comino was inhabited up till very recently, probably up till the early 1990s. People just left because modern lifestyles require amenities that are not available there and commuting by boat just to go to work and send your kids to school is not ...


2

European countries were content to "live and let live" (and take the occasional loss). That was particularly true because the larger countries, e.g. England and France, managed to cut "sweetheart" deals with the pirates. The reason that there was a concerted effort to put an end to the Pirates in the early 1800s (and not before), was the establishment of ...


2

"Did different ships bearning the skull and crossbones ever come together under one flag?" I kind of doubt it. The likely result would have been a mutiny against one or more of the ship captains, who would then have been made to "walk the plank." A Jolly Roger was kind of a loner. Getting two or more of them together was kind of an oxymoron, unless it was ...


2

I only know about this for the late eighteen and early nineteenth centuries, when a letter of marque would usually give you protection from ships belonging to the country that issued it. Usually, not guaranteed. It did no good at all with ships of the country or countries you were "entitled" to attack, who would treat you as a pirate. Other countries might ...


2

A "letter of marque" protected a privateer only against his home state (the one that issued the letter). In effect, it was a "peace treaty" between the two; the privateer "lays off" the ships of his sovereign, who then promises not to prosecute, provided the privateer confines his depredations to the vessels of other countries. It provided no protection ...


1

Prior to the invention of an accurate chronometer, a ship wishing to visit an isolated island would need to either sail to the correct latitude from a position known to be to the east of the island and then head west, or sail to that latitude from a position west of the island and head east. If a ship that tried to visit the island from the north or south ...


1

Interest only: Standard disclaimers: Correlation does not imply causation, YMMV, do not bend staple fold or mutilate, IANAL, DTTAH: But Googles NGram viewer returns the following interesting curve sets. The upper graph pair shows is a case insensitive search for "rum" and for "pirates" in English language documents in general. The lower graph pair shows ...


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