Saturday, December 22, 2007


Pirates were happiest when they had plenty of money to spend and were enjoying themselves on dry land. Their life at sea was very hard, but sometimes there was fun to be had onboard ship too. Singing, for example, helped with repetitive work as well as providing entertainment

AND A BOTTLE OF RUM Alot pirates wasted all their money when they reached land, on drinking and gambling. The idea that most pirates buried their treasure on desert islands is probably untrue, for almost all of them would have spent everything they had on shore. Port Royal, in Jamaica, was a favorite spot amongst pirates, and it gained a reputation as the wickedest city in the world. It had so many taverns that there was one for every 150 people. When the city was devastated by an earthquake in 1692, many said it was God's punishment on the place.

GOING ASHORE Pirates sometimes plundered the cities they passed through when they went ashore, but usually when pirates reached land they came to stock up on food and medicines, make repairs to their ships, and enjoy themselves. Blackbeard frequently got married! Some say he had fourteen wives in different ports.

Wooden ships had to be carefully maintained to keep them seaworthy. Every so often the ship had to be "careened" put onto its side so that weed and barnacles could be scraped off the bottom. Weed slowed ships down, and pirate ships had to be fast in case they were chased, Pirates found quiet inlets to repair their ships.