piracy

Famous Real and Fictional Pirates

Famous names appearing in the long history of piracy include Sir Francis Drake and Sir John Hawkins, the Elizabethan buccaneers, Edward Mansfield, Henry Morgan, Jacques Nau, Jean Laffite, and Edward Teach (Blackbeard). There is some doubt as to whether the activities of Captain Kidd constituted piracy.

The pirate is a frequent figure in literature, especially in books written for children. Perhaps the most famous fictional pirate is Long John Silver in R. L. Stevenson's Treasure Island. Sir Walter Scott and James Fenimore Cooper each wrote a novel entitled The Pirate, Charles Kingsley wrote of buccaneers in Westward Ho!, and Sir William Gilbert ridiculed pirate stories in his Pirates of Penzance.

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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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