7 Myths and Truths about Pirates

22 10 2007

7 Myths and Truths about Pirates


Why did so many pirates have colorful nicknames like “Blackbeard” and “Half Bottom”? The main reason was to prevent government officials from identifying and persecuting their relatives back home. (How did “Half Bottom” get his nickname? A cannonball shot half his bottom off.)


Few (if any) pirate ships ever used “the plank.” When pirates took over a ship, they usually let the captured crewmembers choose between joining the pirate crew or jumping overboard. Why go to all the trouble of setting up a plank to walk off? As historian Hugh Rankin put it: “The formality of a plank seems a bit absurd when it was so much easier just to toss a prisoner overboard.”


Another myth. No pirate would have trusted his captain to bury treasure for him. According to pirate expert Robert Ritchie, “The men who turned to piracy did so because they wanted money. As soon as possible after capturing a prize they insisted on dividing the loot, which they could then gamble with or carry home. The idea of burying loot on a tropical island would have struck them as insane.”…




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: