The Pirate Wars by Peter Earle

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Investigating the fascination pirates hold over the popular imagination, Peter Earle takes the fable of ocean-going Robin Hoods sailing under the "banner of King Death" and contrasts it with the murderous reality of robbery, torture and death and the freedom of a short, violent life on the high seas. The book charts 250 years of piracy, from Cornwall to the Caribbean, from the 16th century to the hanging of the last pirate captain in Boston in 1835. Along the way, we meet characters like Captain Thomas Cocklyn, chosen as commander of his ship "on account of his brutality and ignorance," and Edward Teach, the notorious "Blackbeard," who felt of his crew "that if he did not now and then kill one of them they would forget who he was." Using material from British Admiralty records, this is an account of the Golden Age of pirates and of the men of the legitimate navies of the world charged with the task of finally bringing these cutthroats to justice.


About Peter Earle

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Peter Earle formerly taught at the London School of Economics and is now Emeritus Reader in Economic History at the University of London. He is the author of over a dozen books on English social and maritime history, including two on different aspects of piracy, Corsairs of Malta and Barbary and The Sack of Panama.
Published July 2, 2013 by Thomas Dunne Books. 317 pages
Genres: History, War, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

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In fact, the author reports, buccaneers often tied alongside a potential prize and drifted with it for a week or more as the captors repeatedly paid “visits” to search for plunder, exact vengeance (including torture) on those who had resisted too vigorously, and rape any female passengers whose r...

Jan 01 2005 | Read Full Review of The Pirate Wars

The Sunday Times

There were considerable numbers of Hispanic and black pirates, as well as the fearsome Muslim corsairs of Barbary, who wreaked havoc on Christian shores for the bestTo see the full article you need to subscribeThe Department of Energy & Climate Change - England - CompetitiveDepartment of Health -...

May 04 2003 | Read Full Review of The Pirate Wars

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