Black Bart

“What’s your name, prisoner?”

“Roberts, third mate... but it won’t matter to you.“

“Welsh then, are ye?”

“Born in Casnewydd-Bach.”

“Ar, me too, from Milfordhaven... I hear say you can navigate a bit. True?”

Roberts didn’t answer.

Captain Davis eyed his captive menacingly for a few moments before easing into a knowing smile.

“The three pounds you make every month for your hard labor sets you at ease, does it? You don’t think I’ll drop you back on the Gold Coast without getting my worth, do ye? Lend me your services and you’ll see first-hand the plenty and satiety, the liberty and power that’s within your grasp. What say you think it over a bit, aye?”

Roberts spat on the deck.

For six weeks, Roberts and Captain Davis threatened, clashed, and cursed each other. Never before had the crew seen their Captain withstand such a challenge from one of his men, pressed or free. He’d had several opportunities to escape, but each time he’d find an excuse to stay. And during this time, Roberts did indeed lend his navigational skills, expertly. It wasn’t an easy thing to do among such a rough and lawless lot, but the crew was impressed. Impressed so much that when Davis was killed by soldiers on the Isle of Princes, they demanded he take his place as their captain.

Roberts accepted.

“Since I’ve dipped my hands in muddy water already, and must be a pirate, ‘tis better being a commander than a mere commoner. I promise my life will be short but merry!”

And it was.

Three years later on February 10, 1722, the prolific career of the Great Pirate John “Bartholomew” Roberts came to a bloody but predictable end. In that short time, he’d captured over 470 ships between the Americas and Africa.


Enbrethiliel said...


Hmmmm. First Andre the Giant, then a pirate named Roberts . . .

You're not in a Princess Bride sort of mood, are you, Christopher?

Karinann said...

Thanks for the swashbuckling sea tale.

cyurkanin said...

LOL Like life, this blog is nothing but a series of connections, leading me onto my final destination!

Jean-François de Buren said...

I've dipped my hands in muddy water, does that make a pirate?

Nervous in Novato

cyurkanin said...

LOL You're probably safe until you find yourself uncontrollably uttering "Arrrrg" and "Matey" at inappropriate times...