Elizabeth Ist coat of arms

Famous Pirates

Calico Jack Rackham

Calico Jack Rackham

Famous Pirates

The Spanish were continuously harassed in the Caribbean by pirates and buccaneers who attacked the Spanish galleons which were carrying riches back to Spain. The celebrated English Explorers Sir John Hawkins and Sir Francis Drake were classed as such famous pirates.

The pirates who operated in the Caribbean in later years included Blackbeard, Calico Jack, Anne Bonny and Henry Morgan. A pirate is a person who robs or plunders at sea, or sometimes the shore, without a commission from a recognised sovereign nation. There were safe havens for pirates, or pirate enclaves, all over the world but Port Royal and Jamaica were famous examples of places where pirates could gather without fear of attack or arrest. The Golden Age of Piracy lasted just over 100 years form the 1500's to the mid 1600's. The most famous Pirates were:

Blackbeard (Edward Teach)
Grace O'Malley
Black Bart
Henry Every (Avery) Henry Morgan
Calico Jack (Jack Rackham)
Barbarossa (meaning Red Beard) the nickname of Khair ad Din
Captain Kidd 

Famous Elizabethan Pirates
The notorious famous pirates detailed on this page are real pirates - not Privateers. The English government issued ‘letters of marque’ to the famous Elizabethan pirates which licensed these sailors to legally plunder enemy ships. These Privateers, often referred to as Elizabethan pirates included Sir Francis Drake, Sir Walter Raleigh, Sir Richard Hawkins and his son, Sir John Hawkins, Sir Martin Frobisher, Sir Humphrey Gilbert and Sir Richard Grenville. Information and facts about these Privateers, or pirates,  can be accessed via the following page Famous Elizabethan Pirates.

List of  early Famous Pirates Names
The following list of names represent the famous pirates and privateers who were associated with the Elizabethan era, late 1400's and early 1500's:

  • Nathaniel Butler - English Pirate
  • Jan de Bouff - Dutch Pirate
  • Tobias Bridge - English Pirate
  • Enrique Brower - Dutch Pirate
  • John Calles - English  Pirate
  • Peter Easton - English Pirate
  • Daniel Elfrith - English Pirate
  • John Nutt - English Pirate
  • Grace O'Malley - Irish  Pirate
  • John Ward - English Pirate

List of  Famous Pirates Names - 1650 - 1700
The following list of names represent the famous pirates who were associated with the Buccaneers and the Spanish Main:

  • Henry Morgan - Welsh
  • John Morris - English
  • Thomas Paine - English
  • Richard Sawkins - English
  • Bartholomew Sharp - English

List of  Famous Pirates Names - 1700 - 1800
The following list of names represent the most famous pirates who were associated with the 1700's:

  • Black Bart (Bartholomew Roberts) - Welsh Pirate
  • George Booth - English Pirate
  • John Bowen - English Pirate
  • Black Bellamy (Samuel Bellamy) - Famous English Pirate
  • Edward Teach or Thatch, known as Blackbeard - English Pirate
  • Anne Bonney (Anne Cormac) - Famous Irish Female Pirate
  • Edward England - English
  • Henry Every (Avery) - English
  • Benjamin Hornigold - English
  • Calico Jack (Jack Rackham) - English
  • James Kelly - English
  • Captain William Kidd - Scottish
  • Mary Read - Famous English Female Pirate
  • Bartholomew Roberts - English
  • Thomas Tew - English
  • Charles Vane - English
  • Richard Worley - English
  • John Morris - English

Famous Woman Pirates
The famous woman pirates are covered in the page Famous Woman Pirates include famous female pirates such as Grace O’Malley, Mary Read, Lady Killigrew and Anne Bonny.

The History of Famous Pirates
The History of Famous Pirates dates back over many hundreds of years. The Golden Age of European pirates saw many seamen, who had served in merchant or naval ships, turning to the lucrative, but dangerous occupation of a pirate. But the pirate crews were treated much better than the navy crews who were subjected to harsh, rules, treatment and punishment and low wages - many were press-ganged into service. The pirate ships were governed by their own laws, called Articles, which were agreed between the pirate crew and the captain - these articles also agreed how the prize money from their raids and captures would be shared out. The history of pirates was based on money - the potential wealth which could be made in a pirate's life. And lifestyle.

The Famous Pirates of the Spanish main
The term the 'Spanish Main' is often associated with famous pirates. But what and where was the Spanish Main? The Spanish established colonies on the land in the New World and also claimed specific sea routes. The “Spanish Main” referred to the coastal region of the Americas surrounding the Caribbean Sea and South America. The famous pirates who operated around the Spanish Main were the original pirates of the Caribbean. The the territories around the Spanish Main opened up paths to the new wealth which was found in the New World. They loaded their ships with their treasure to send back to Spain. These Spanish treasures fleets were attacked by many of the famous pirates. The original Pirates of the Caribbean and the pirates the Spanish Main used many of the Caribbean Islands as their bases. The traffic in treasure made the Spanish Main a haunt of famous pirates and privateers.

Famous Elizabethan Pirates
Famous Women Pirates
Famous Pirate Ships
Pirate Flags
The Pirate Song
Pirate Clothing
Pirate Code of Conduct
Anne Bonney
Mary Read
The Age of Exploration
Elizabethan Era Index

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