Captain Avery – Notorious Pirate
London was enthralled in Defoe’s time by the exploits of the pirate Captain Avery, the only English pirate who escaped capture and trial. Defoe wrote about Avery in a short booklet, The King of the Pirates, 1719 and in A General History of the Pyrates, 1724, These accounts carry a good deal of factual information about Avery; so much so that the reader is bound to think that, perhaps, the couple had met.
I believe that they did meet. In this column over a period of twenty months I shall tell their story in successive episodes. Can the truth of Avery’s relationship with Defoe really be told? You will be the judge of that.
Chapter 1 – My Crime
The climax of my career at sea was a stunning sea battle and a victory in the face of overwhelming odds. As I lie on my bed I can hear the roar of the cannon, the hiss of bullets and the cries of many men some exultant and others despairing. And not for a minute but for many hours and at times when we looked to have failed. It took the fierceness and resolution of a motley assembly of men, my men, to achieve the impossible. Continue reading
Chapter 2 Beginnings Accounting for one’s own life is a leery matter. Of course, I can tell you a little or a lot. What though did I tell my dear Biddy? You can imagine it. I wished her to think … Continue reading