Many Historical Stories of Adventure and fortune contain these dastardly fiends. And grateful I am, that most of those tales can be found inside the covers of a Romance Novel.
As I'm reading these Fictional stories, I learn about the character's past, like where they came from & how they became a pirate in the first place. Or perhaps the hero is the sailor who had no other choice or kinda *fell into the position* and he ends up sailing with a well-meaning (of course) captain. Yeah right!
Now, we all know that in most Romantic Novels (the ones I read - anyway), the hero (on the whole) is supposed to be a well meaning and gentlemanly fellow who would never intentionally harm or abuse our heroine OR other women for that matter, after all romance heroes have a reputation to uphold or else we wouldn't care what happens to him & like the heroine, we wouldn't fall in love with them - would we?
And seeing authors want us to love their Hero Pirate it intrigues me to ask - Were there any nice pirates in reality?
Did they turn out to be the hero, the one who turned from bad to good, who saved the girl from unscrupulous cretins, rogues and other unspeakable dangers?
I read an interesting post recently on the English History Authors Blogspot by Nick Smith about Pirates, Buccaneers & privateers. 2014/06/buccaneers-how-they-changed-world
|Aruj, or Oruç, Reis was |
a Turkish privateer and later
Admiral in Ottoman service
who became known as
Barbarossa – or Redbeard
– amongst Christians.
Thank you Nick for sharing your knowledge.
From years of personal research, I have found the real truth is *Pirates were not very nice at all*. Most of them (sadly) were indeed, murderers, scoundrels, rapists and thieves, just as we are led to believe. I mean a lot didn't set out to turn to a life of piracy, but circumstances (greed and riches) led them to it. And once they embraced the life style there was no turning back. Also (in my opinion), they were not that handsome either. Not like we romanticize about or are made to believe in the Romance novels of today. stories. The characters played by Errol Flynn and Johnny Depp, were few and far between. If they existed at all.
|Sir Francis Verney was|
one of the most fearedBarbary corsairs during
the early 17th century.
Piracy doesn't lay claim to the modern world either. Dionysius the Phocaean from Greece was an active pirate around 494 BC. He was the oldest listed one I could find, but perhaps others existed even before then if their history was recorded somewhere. And Piracy didn't/doesn't discriminate. It seems there were famous pirates terrorising the high seas from all cultures across the known world. Wherever there were waters to sail, lands to conquer, treasures and adventure to be had, they were there.
I have read 100's of Historical novels that had at least one pirate in it, and enjoyed each hero despite the gruesome reality of History. I'm pleased that poetic licence gives us writers the ability to turn monsters into puppy dogs and lions into kittens all for the sake of Love, as well as a story with a HEA.