The Republic of Pirates: Being the True and Surprising Story of the Caribbean Pirates and the Man Who Brought Them Down
ISBN: 015603462X
EAN13: 9780156034623
Language: English
Pages: 400
Dimensions: 0.8" H x 7.9" L x 5.2" W
Weight: 0.8 lbs.
Format: Paperback
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The Republic of Pirates: Being the True and Surprising Story of the Caribbean Pirates and the Man Who Brought Them Down

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Book Overview

In the early eighteenth century a number of the great pirate captains joined forces, including Blackbeard, Black Sam Bellamy, and Charles Vane. This infamous Flying Gang was more than simply a band of thieves: Many of its members were sailors, indentured servants, and runaway slaves who turned to piracy as a revolt against the conditions they suffered on ships and plantations. Together they established a crude but distinctive democracy in the Bahamas, carving out their own zone of freedom in which servants were free, blacks could be equal citizens, and leaders were chosen or deposed by a vote.
For a brief, glorious period the pirate republic was enormously successful. At its height it cut off trade routes, sacked slave ships, and severed Britain, France, and Spain from their New World empires. The Royal Navy went from being unable to catch the pirates to being afraid to encounter them at all. Imperial authorities and wealthy shipowners denounced the pirates as the enemies of mankind, but huge numbers of common people saw them as heroes. Finally one man volunteered to pacify the pirate s Bahaman lair and destroy any who resisted -- Woodes Rogers, a famous privateer himself and scion of a powerful merchant family.
Drawing on extensive research in the archives of Britain and the Americas, Colin Woodard tells the dramatic untold story of the Pirate Republic that shook the very foundations of the British and Spanish Empires and fanned the democratic sentiments that would one day drive the American revolution.

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