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Transcript

Blackbeard

2015

Edward Teach (c. 1680 – 22 November 1718) was an English pirate, often called "Blackbeard the Pirate". He attacked ships in the Caribbean and the American colonies. His flagship ship was the captured French slave ship La Concorde which Blackbeard renamed Queen Anne's Revenge. Blackbeard often fought wearing a big feathered tricorn hat, and with lots of swords, knives, and pistols. Some pictures show him with lighted rope matches woven into his enormous black beard during battle. The matches burned slowly and gave of lots of smoke. They were designed to make him look frightening. The lieutenant governor of Virginia, Alexander Spotswood, dispatched a British naval force under Lieutenant Robert Maynard, who, after a hard fight, succeeded in killing Blackbeard...The legend says he had as many as fourteen wives, but he was not legally married to most of them!

Corsairs

2015

The term corsair is attached to the Mediterranean Sea, where, from the late 14th century to the early 19th century, the Ottoman Empire dueled with the Christian states of Europe for maritime supremacy. They fought with both conventional navies and state-sanctioned sea bandits called corsairs. Corsairs were essentially privateers, but the term corsair had an added religious connotation because the conflict was between Muslim and Christian powers. The Barbarossa brothers were already experienced pirates in the Mediterranean when Spain completed its conquest of Granada in 1492, defeating the last vestige of Islamic rule in the Iberian Peninsula, and Muslim immigrants from the region took refuge in North Africa.

Pirates

2015

Originating with the Greek peiratēs, meaning brigand, pirates are criminals at sea, including coastal raiding and intercepting ships for their gold.Robbery, kidnapping, violent attacks and murder all qualify as piratical activities, provided there’s some water and a boat involved. If there’s no water and no boat, you’re just a regular bandit. For many people, the term pirate conjures up images of the so-called “golden age” of piracy, in the 17th and 18th centuries, along with legendary pirates such as Blackbeard or Captain Kidd or their fictional equivalents such as Long John Silver or Captain Jack Sparrow. But piracy is a much more universal phenomenon. Any time people have used the sea for military and commercial purposes, there presumably has been some form of piracy.

Pirate women

2015

The pirate Mary Read was born in London. As a young woman she joined the army in Flanders disguised as a boy soldier because only men could sail.She later went to sea, still dressed in male clothes, and was captured by a pirate ship commanded by ‘Calico’ Jack Rackam. Another member of Read's pirate crew was Anne Bonny, from Ireland. After several plundering expeditions around the Caribbean together, their ship was captured off Jamaica and the crew were sent for trial in Spanish Town. All the men in the crew were hanged but Mary Read and Anne Bonny were reprieved because they were both pregnant. Mary fell ill with fever soon after the trial and died in prison. Anne Bonny took part in many attacks and fought fiercely. In 1720 she was put on trial in Jamaica and sentenced to death.

Jolly Roger

2015

A common symbol of piracy was the Jolly Roger—a black flag with a white skull and crossbones.The traditional flag was used on European and American pirate ships, and, more recently, by submarine crews.A Jolly Roger was essential to be identifed as a pirate ship before an attack, during the early 18th century, with the intention to intimidate or scare the other ships and let them surrender.The term "Jolly Roger" itself may have originated from the French term "joli rouge", meaning "pretty red", which referred to a red flag used by early pirates.

Pirates adventures

2015

If there is a competition between all pirates in plundering ships, Bartholomew Roberts would win it by far. Perhaps he was the most successful pirate that the world ever knew. A rumor goes that he plundered around 400 ships.The main reason for a lasting success was his boldness. This fearless leader terrorized every ship he encountered throughout the Caribbean Sea. Bartholomew Roberts was nicknamed Black Barty to represent his violent activities.He is also noted for creating his own pirate code, and adopting an early variant of the Skull and Crossbones flag.

During the Golden Age of Piracy, Spain minted coins in silver and gold. The silver coins were known as Reales (Reals) and the gold coins — Escudos (Escudo). Doubloon comes from the Spanish Doblón which means to double; so a doubloon is a coin of double value.The pirates knew full well that if they could intercept and attack a Spanish galleon en route to its trading destination, their chances of finding gold aboard were extremely high.Governors could also offer 1,000 doubloons for the capture of famous pirates!

Treasures of the East

2015

At the beginning of the 19th century, lived a pirate who controlled the entire South China Sea and fought against the Portuguese and British navies. The pirate we are talking about commanded 1,800 war junks with 80,000 pirates. Her name was Madame Ching Shih.Born as Shi Yang in 1775 in China to humble origins, she married a pirate named Zheng Yi at age 26 in 1801. She died in 1844 at the age of about 68, having lived a relatively peaceful and prosperous life since the end of her career in piracy. Zheng Yi Sao has been described as not only history's most successful female pirate, but one of the most successful pirates in history.

Punishments

2015

The most common form of punishment for a captured pirate towards the end of the Golden Age was to be hanged, usually immediately after the trial. These executions took place in public and often in a location where passing mariners would see the act.The punishment for privateering was a very long prison sentence.If a pirate violated the code, they did not "walk the plank." Little to no historical evidence exists to support that practice, which was largely pulled from fiction, including Treasure Island or Robinson Crusoe.

The Spanish Main

2015

A map illustrating the changing balance of colonial power among the Spanish, English, and French Empires in the 1700s along the coastlines of the Americas, specifically in the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. This region, referred to as the Spanish Main and the West Indies, witnessed significant modifications in dominance. The Spanish treasure fleet was a convoy to link Spain to its territories in America and transport a large variety of items (silver, gold, wood, spices, tobacco...)The Spanish government organised a hundred ships to protect the treasure fleet from attacks in the Caribbean islands, by pirates paid by England and France.

Pirates & parrots

2015

The classic Pirate image comes from Robert Louis Stevenson, who gave Long John Silver a parrot named Captain Flint in his immensely influential adventure novel Treasure Island.Real Caribbean pirates had parrots because the bird was native to the region, but it was rare.On some occasions a few pirates would keep them as pets but this was to show there were rich and of high status.