Bill's Reviews > The Republic of Pirates: Being the True and Surprising Story of the Caribbean Pirates and the Man Who Brought Them Down

The Republic of Pirates by Colin Woodard
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's review
Nov 07, 2007

really liked it
Recommended for: people interested in pirates or rum
Read in January, 2008

This is a remarkably well written account of the most famous pirate captains during the Golden Age of Piracy (1715-1725), and the man who ruined his life to bring them back "to God and law." If you are at all interested in following the rise and fall of Edward "Blackbeard" Teach, Samuel "Black Sam" Bellamy, Charles Vane, and Woodes Rogers, who hunted them for King George I, this is the book for you.

Ever since moving to the Boston area I have been reading, as local interest pieces, books about colonial era shipping and trade. In particular books about pirates, because pirates are awesome.

This is the best written, and best researched, book on colonial piracy I've read to date. It is based heavily on first hand accounts, in the form of letters and other personal correspondences. It also takes into account recent attempts to sift out the fact from embellishment in General History of Pyrates; a book that not only shaped popular conceptions of pirates, but has served as the foundation of academic study of colonial era piracy since it was published.

The book also pays particular attention to the political motivations of many 18th Century English pirates; who not only sought prizes and plunder, but who fought in open revolt against King George I in support of the deposed Stuart kings.


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