1694 in piracy
- May 7 - Henry Every leads a mutiny aboard the privateer ship Charles II at La Coruña and turns the crew to piracy.
1. 1694 – As of the start of 1694, the Gregorian calendar was 10 days ahead of the Julian calendar, which remained in localized use until 1923. February 5 – The ship Ridderschap van Holland is lost at sea after it departs the Cape of Good Hope, february 6 – The colony of Quilombo dos Palmares, Brazil, is destroyed. March 1 – The HMS Sussex treasure fleet of thirteen ships is wrecked in the Mediterranean off Gibraltar with the loss of approximately 1,200 lives. A total of £1.2 million is raised for the war effort against Louis XIV of France by the end of the year to establish the first-ever government debt, september 5 – The Great Fire of Warwick in England. Autumn – A major windstorm spreads the Culbin Sands over an area of farmland in Scotland. October 25 – Queen Mary II of England founds the Royal Hospital for Seamen at Greenwich, december – Thomas Tenison is appointed Archbishop of Canterbury. December 3 – The Parliament of England passes the Triennial Act requiring general elections every three years, december 28 – Queen Mary II of England dies of smallpox aged 32, leaving her husband King William III to rule alone but without an heir. Since he is also without a royal hostess, Marys sister Princess Anne is summoned back to court as his official heiress, the Lao empire of Lan Xang unofficially ends. Notorious voyage of the English slave ship Hannibal in the Atlantic slave trade out of Benin, rascians establish the settlement which will become Novi Sad on the Danube. The Académie française publishes the first complete edition of its Dictionnaire in Paris
2. Henry Every – Henry Avery, also Evory or Every, sometimes erroneously given as John Avery, was an English pirate who operated in the Atlantic and Indian oceans in the mid-1690s. He probably used several aliases throughout his career, including Benjamin Bridgeman, although Averys career as a pirate lasted only two years, his exploits captured the publics imagination, inspired others to take up piracy, and spawned numerous works of literature. Avery was baptised at Newton Ferrers in Devon in Englands West Country, likely a member of the local Every family and he served in the Royal Navy from 1689 to 1690, likely participating in several battles of the Nine Years War. Following his discharge from the navy, Avery began slave trading along Africas Slave Coast, after leaving London in August 1693, the Charles II anchored in the northern Spanish harbor of Corunna, where other vessels were assembling for the expedition. The crew grew discontent as Madrid failed to deliver a letter of marque, on the evening of 7 May 1694, the restless sailors mutinied. With the Charles II renamed the Fancy and Avery elected as the new captain, in early 1695 the Fancy had reached the Comoros Islands, where Averys crew raided a French vessel and narrowly escaped capture by three East Indiamen. Joining forces with several vessels, Avery found himself in command of a small pirate squadron. As the pirates gave chase, the vessels in the squadron gradually fell behind. Avery had more success, however, capturing the Fateh Muhammed and later overtaking the Gunsway, following several hours of ferocious hand-to-hand combat on deck, the pirates emerged victorious. 4m in 2010. After this raid, Avery and his crew tortured and killed a number of the passengers. Some women stabbed themselves with daggers or jumped overboard, committing suicide to escape this fate, the plunder of Gunsway caused considerable damage to Englands fragile relations with the Mughals. Avery and his crew fled to the Bahamas, briefly sheltering in New Providence, after adopting aliases, the crew broke company, most choosing to sail home to the British Isles and the rest remaining in the British West Indies or taking to the North American colonies. Twenty-four of the pirates were captured, and six were tried, convicted. Yet Avery eluded capture, vanishing from all records in 1696, his whereabouts, unconfirmed accounts state he may have changed his name and retired, quietly living out the rest of his life in either Britain or an unidentified tropical island, dying sometime after 1696. Colin Woodard states that Avery, in trying to launder his riches to currency, had been outsmarted by wealthy landowners, many still believe that Averys treasure is still out there. Modern scholarship suggests that Every was born on 23 August 1659 in the village of Newton Ferrers, about 9.7 kilometres southeast of Plymouth. Every was married and records indicate that he may have wed one Dorothy Arther at St James Dukes Place in London on 11 September 1690, the earliest biographical account of the man, The Life and Adventures of Capt. John Avery, states that he was born in 1653 in Cattedown, though this location and date are now known to be incorrect, they have been frequently cited in earlier literature
3. Mutiny – Mutiny is a criminal conspiracy among a group of people to openly oppose, change, or overthrow a lawful authority to which they are subject. The term is used for a rebellion among members of the military against their superior officers. During the Age of Discovery, mutiny particularly meant open rebellion against a ships captain, until 1689, mutiny was regulated in England by Articles of War instituted by the monarch and effective only in a period of war. In 1689, the first Mutiny Act was passed which passed the responsibility to enforce discipline within the military to Parliament. The Mutiny Act, altered in 1803, and the Articles of War defined the nature and punishment of mutiny until the latter were replaced by the Army Discipline and this, in turn, was replaced by the Army Act in 1881. The same definition applies in the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force, the military law of England in early times existed, like the forces to which it applied, in a period of war only. Troops were raised for a service and were disbanded upon the cessation of hostilities. The crown, by prerogative, made known as Articles of War for the government and discipline of the troops while thus embodied. This power of law-making by prerogative was however held to be applicable during a state of war only. Subject to this limitation, it existed for more than a century after the passing of the first Mutiny Act. The Mutiny Act 1873 was passed in this manner, such matters remained until 1879 when the last Mutiny Act was passed and the last Articles of War were promulgated. The act and the articles were not to harmonize in all respects. Their general arrangement was faulty, and their sometimes obscure. In 1869, a commission recommended that both should be recast in a simple and intelligible shape. In 1878, a committee of the House of Commons endorsed this view, in 1879, passed into law a measure consolidating in one act both the Mutiny Act and the Articles of War, and amending their provisions in certain important respects. This measure was called the Army Discipline and Regulation Act 1879, as the punishment of every conceivable offence was provided, any articles made under the act could be no more than an empty formality having no practical effect. These rules, however, must not be inconsistent with the provisions of the Army Act itself, thus in 1879 the government and discipline of the army became for the first time completely subject either to the direct action or the close supervision of parliament. A further notable change took place at the same time, each session therefore the text of the act had to be passed through both Houses clause by clause and line by line
4. Privateer – A privateer was a private person or ship that engaged in maritime warfare under a commission of war. Captured ships were subject to condemnation and sale under prize law, a percentage share usually went to the issuer of the commission. Since robbery under arms was common to trade, all merchant ships were already armed. During war, naval resources were auxiliary to operations on land so privateering was a way of subsidizing state power by mobilizing armed ships, the letter of marque of a privateer would typically limit activity to one particular ship, and specified officers. Typically, the owners or captain would be required to post a performance bond, in the United Kingdom, letters of marque were revoked for various offences. Some crews were treated as harshly as naval crews of the time, some crews were made up of professional merchant seamen, others of pirates, debtors, and convicts. Some privateers ended up becoming pirates, not just in the eyes of their enemies, william Kidd, for instance, began as a legitimate British privateer but was later hanged for piracy. The investors would arm the vessels and recruit large crews, much larger than a merchantman or a vessel would carry. Privateers generally cruised independently, but it was not unknown for them to form squadrons, a number of privateers were part of the English fleet that opposed the Spanish Armada in 1588. Privateers generally avoided encounters with warships, as such encounters would be at best unprofitable, for instance, in 1815 Chasseur encountered HMS St Lawrence, herself a former American privateer, mistaking her for a merchantman until too late, in this instance, however, the privateer prevailed. The United States used mixed squadrons of frigates and privateers in the American Revolutionary War, the practice dated to at least the 13th century but the word itself was coined sometime in the mid-17th century. England, and later the United Kingdom, used privateers to great effect and these privately owned merchant ships, licensed by the crown, could legitimately take vessels that were deemed pirates. The increase in competition for crews on armed merchant vessels and privateers was due, in a large part, because of the chance for a considerable payoff. Whereas a seaman who shipped on a vessel was paid a wage and provided with victuals. This proved to be a far more attractive prospect and privateering flourished as a result, during Queen Elizabeths reign, she encouraged the development of this supplementary navy. Over the course of her rule, she had allowed Anglo-Spanish relations to deteriorate to the point where one could argue that a war with the Spanish was inevitable. By using privateers, if the Spanish were to take offense at the plundering of their ships, some of the most famous privateers that later fought in the Anglo-Spanish War included the Sea Dogs. In the late 16th century, English ships cruised in the Caribbean and off the coast of Spain, at this early stage the idea of a regular navy was not present, so there is little to distinguish the activity of English privateers from regular naval warfare
5. Fancy (ship) – Fancy was Henry Everys ship, and was commanded by him between May 1694 to late 1695, when he retired from piracy and the fate of Fancy becomes unknown. Fancy was initially a 46-gun privateer named Charles II - after Charles II of Spain - in Spanish service, commanded by a Captain Gibson, and was anchored at A Coruña, Spain. On 7 May 1694, Henry Every and a few other conspirators organised and carried out a mutiny and, setting Captain Gibson ashore. At this time, Charles II was renamed Fancy and he also had Fancy razeed, intentionally removing parts of the ships superstructure in order to increase her speed. Every continued to be active in the Indian Ocean where he worked alongside other famous pirates of his time, most notable in his captures was Ganj-I-Sawai, a Mughal ship under the command of Ibrahim Khan during Emperor Aurangzebs era. Everys career ended when the returned to Nassau, in the Bahamas. Although the fate of Fancy is unknown, it was rumored that Every gave her to the governor of Nassau as bribe
6. Thomas Tew – Thomas Tew, also known as the Rhode Island Pirate, was a 17th-century English privateer-turned-pirate. He embarked on two major piratical voyages and met a bloody death on the journey, and he pioneered the route which became known as the Pirate Round. Many other famous pirates followed in his path, including Henry Avery, much of what is known about Tew is derived from Captain Charles Johnsons A General History of the Pyrates, which is a mixture of fact and fiction. When reading about Thomas Tew, it is important to be able to distinguish between truth and story, Captain Johnson said, Tew, in Point of Gallantry, was inferior to none. It is frequently written that Tew had family in Rhode Island dating back to 1640 and he may have been born in New England. One theory is that he was born in Maidford, Northamptonshire, England before emigrating to the colonies as a child with his family and he lived at one time in Newport, Rhode Island. Tew is reported as being married with two daughters, according to one source, his wife and children all greatly enjoyed the New York City social scene after Tew struck it rich, but there is no supporting evidence elsewhere for this. In 1691, Tew moved to Bermuda, there is evidence that he was already reputed as a pirate at that time, but no modern historian has determined whether this reputation was earned or not. He may simply have engaged in privateering against French and Spanish ships and he was in close relations with fellow pirate Captain Want who was his closest ally. In 1692, Thomas Tew obtained a letter of marque from the Governor of Bermuda, various Bermudian backers provided him with a vessel, the seventy-ton sloop Amity, armed with eight guns and crewed by forty-six officers and men. He and another captain obtained a commission from the lieutenant governor of Bermuda to destroy a French factory off the coast of West Africa. Thus equipped, Tew set sail in December, ostensibly to serve as a privateer against French holdings in The Gambia. But not long out of Bermuda, Tew announced his intention of turning to piracy, Tews crew reportedly answered with the shout, A gold chain or a wooden leg, well stand with you. The newly minted pirates proceeded to elect a quartermaster, a common practice to balance the captains power. Tew reached the Red Sea and ran down a large Ghanjah dhow en route from India to the Ottoman Empire, despite its enormous garrison of 300 soldiers, the Indian dhow surrendered without serious resistance, inflicting no casualties on the assailants. Tews pirates helped themselves to the ship’s rich treasure, worth £100,000 in gold and silver alone, not counting the value of the ivory, spices, gemstones, and silk taken. Tews 45 men afterward shared out between £1,200 and £3,000 per man, and Tew himself claimed about £8,000, Tew urged his filibusters to hunt down and rob the other ships in the Indian convoy, but yielded to the opposition of the quartermaster. He set course back to the Cape of Good Hope, stopping at the island of St. Marys on Madagascar to careen, Tew reached Newport in April 1694