1701 in piracy
- May 23 - William Kidd, privateer and pirate (born c. 1645).
1. William Kidd – William Kidd, also Captain William Kidd or simply Captain Kidd was a Scottish sailor who was tried and executed for piracy after returning from a voyage to the Indian Ocean. Some modern historians deem his piratical reputation unjust, legends and fiction surround this character, his actual career, however, was punctuated by just a handful of skirmishes. Kidd was born in Dundee, Scotland, ca.22 January 1654, his father, Captain John Kyd, Kidd gave Greenock as his place of birth and his age as 41 in testimony under oath at the High Court of the Admiralty in October 1694 or 1695. A local society supported the Kyd family financially after the death of the father, others still hold the contrary view. Kidd later settled in the newly anglicized New York City, where he befriended many prominent colonial citizens, some published information suggests that he was a seamans apprentice on a pirate ship during this time, before partaking in his more famous seagoing exploits. There they renamed the ship Blessed William, and Kidd became captain either as a result of election by the crew, or by appointment of Christopher Codrington. The governor did not pay the sailors for their defensive services, Kidd and his men attacked the French island of Marie-Galante, destroying its only town and looting the area, and gathering for themselves something around 2,000 pounds Sterling. Later, during the War of the Grand Alliance, on commissions from the provinces of New York and Massachusetts Bay, in New York City, Kidd was active in the building of Trinity Church, New York. It would have viewed as disloyalty to the crown to turn down this request, carrying much social stigma. The request preceded the voyage which established Kidds reputation as a pirate, Kidd was presented with a letter of marque, signed personally by King William III of England. This letter reserved 10% of the loot for the Crown, Kidd and his acquaintance Colonel Robert Livingston orchestrated the whole plan and paid for the rest. Kidd had to sell his ship Antigua to raise funds, the new ship Adventure Galley was well suited to the task of catching pirates, weighing over 284 tons burthen and equipped with 34 cannon, oars, and 150 men. The oars were a key advantage, as they enabled Adventure Galley to manoeuvre in a battle when the winds had calmed, Kidd took pride in personally selecting the crew, choosing only those whom he deemed to be the best and most loyal officers. As the Adventure Galley sailed down the Thames, Kidd unaccountably failed to salute a Navy yacht at Greenwich, the Navy yacht then fired a shot to make him show respect, and Kidd’s crew responded with an astounding display of impudence — by turning and slapping their backsides in. Because of Kidds refusal to salute, the Navy vessels captain retaliated by pressing much of Kidds crew into naval service, thus short-handed, Kidd sailed for New York City, capturing a French vessel en route. To make up for the lack of officers, Kidd picked up replacement crew in New York, among Kidds officers was his quartermaster Hendrick van der Heul. The quartermaster was considered second in command to the captain in pirate culture of this era and it is not clear, however, if van der Heul exercised this degree of responsibility, because Kidd was nominally a privateer. Van der Heul is also noteworthy because he may have been African or of African descent, a contemporary source describes him as a small black Man
2. Execution Dock – Execution Dock was used for more than 400 years in London to execute pirates, smugglers and mutineers who had been sentenced to death by Admiralty courts. The dock, which consisted of a scaffold for hanging, was located near the shoreline of the River Thames at Wapping and its last executions were in 1830. The legal jurisdiction for the British Admiralty was for all crimes committed at sea, the dock symbolised that jurisdiction by being located just beyond the low-tide mark in the river. Anybody who had committed crimes on the seas, either in home waters or abroad, would eventually be brought back to London and those sentenced to death were usually brought to Execution Dock from Marshalsea Prison. The condemned were paraded across London Bridge past the Tower of London, the procession was led by the High Court Marshal on horseback. He carried a silver oar that represented the authority of the Admiralty, prisoners were transported in a cart to Wapping, with them was a chaplain who encouraged them to confess their sins. Just like the execution procession to Tyburn, condemned prisoners were allowed to drink a quart of ale at a house on the way to the gallows. An execution at the dock usually meant that crowds lined the banks or chartered boats moored in the Thames to get a better view of the hangings. Executions were conducted by the hangmen who worked at either Tyburn, with a particular cruelty reserved for those convicted of acts of piracy, hanging was done with a shortened rope. This meant a death from strangulation on the scaffold as the drop was insufficient to break the prisoners neck. It was called the Marshals dance because their limbs would often be seen to dance from slow asphyxiation, unlike hangings on land such as at Tyburn, the bodies of pirates at Execution Dock were not immediately cut down following death. Customarily, these corpses were left hanging on the nooses until at least three tides had washed over their heads and this practice stopped at the end of the 18th century. An account from The Gentlemans Magazine, dated 4 February 1796 and they were turned off about a quarter before twelve in the midst of an immense crowd of spectators. The whole cavalcade was conducted with great solemnity, the infamous Captain Kidd, who had been convicted of piracy and murder, was taken from Newgate Prison and executed at the dock in 1701. During his execution, the broke and Kidd was hanged on the second attempt. His remains were gibbeted by the river Thames at Tilbury for three years, sailors George Davis and William Watts, who were convicted of murdering a ships captain, were the final hangings at the dock on 16 December 1830. Some sources state there is a large E on the Thames side of the building at Swan Warf that indicates where Execution Dock once stood, another source states it was approximately where the London Overground station now stands, about two-thirds of the way along Wapping High Street going east
3. London – London /ˈlʌndən/ is the capital and most populous city of England and the United Kingdom. Standing on the River Thames in the south east of the island of Great Britain and it was founded by the Romans, who named it Londinium. Londons ancient core, the City of London, largely retains its 1. 12-square-mile medieval boundaries. London is a global city in the arts, commerce, education, entertainment, fashion, finance, healthcare, media, professional services, research and development, tourism. It is crowned as the worlds largest financial centre and has the fifth- or sixth-largest metropolitan area GDP in the world, London is a world cultural capital. It is the worlds most-visited city as measured by international arrivals and has the worlds largest city airport system measured by passenger traffic, London is the worlds leading investment destination, hosting more international retailers and ultra high-net-worth individuals than any other city. Londons universities form the largest concentration of education institutes in Europe. In 2012, London became the first city to have hosted the modern Summer Olympic Games three times, London has a diverse range of people and cultures, and more than 300 languages are spoken in the region. Its estimated mid-2015 municipal population was 8,673,713, the largest of any city in the European Union, Londons urban area is the second most populous in the EU, after Paris, with 9,787,426 inhabitants at the 2011 census. The citys metropolitan area is the most populous in the EU with 13,879,757 inhabitants, the city-region therefore has a similar land area and population to that of the New York metropolitan area. London was the worlds most populous city from around 1831 to 1925, Other famous landmarks include Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, St Pauls Cathedral, Tower Bridge, Trafalgar Square, and The Shard. The London Underground is the oldest underground railway network in the world, the etymology of London is uncertain. It is an ancient name, found in sources from the 2nd century and it is recorded c.121 as Londinium, which points to Romano-British origin, and hand-written Roman tablets recovered in the city originating from AD 65/70-80 include the word Londinio. The earliest attempted explanation, now disregarded, is attributed to Geoffrey of Monmouth in Historia Regum Britanniae and this had it that the name originated from a supposed King Lud, who had allegedly taken over the city and named it Kaerlud. From 1898, it was accepted that the name was of Celtic origin and meant place belonging to a man called *Londinos. The ultimate difficulty lies in reconciling the Latin form Londinium with the modern Welsh Llundain, which should demand a form *lōndinion, from earlier *loundiniom. The possibility cannot be ruled out that the Welsh name was borrowed back in from English at a later date, and thus cannot be used as a basis from which to reconstruct the original name. Until 1889, the name London officially applied only to the City of London, two recent discoveries indicate probable very early settlements near the Thames in the London area
4. Madagascar – Madagascar, officially the Republic of Madagascar, and previously known as the Malagasy Republic, is an island country in the Indian Ocean, off the coast of Southeast Africa. The nation comprises the island of Madagascar, and numerous smaller peripheral islands, consequently, Madagascar is a biodiversity hotspot, over 90% of its wildlife is found nowhere else on Earth. The islands diverse ecosystems and unique wildlife are threatened by the encroachment of the growing human population. The first archaeological evidence for human foraging on Madagascar dates to 2000 BC, human settlement of Madagascar occurred between 350 BC and AD550 by Austronesian peoples arriving on outrigger canoes from Borneo. These were joined around AD1000 by Bantu migrants crossing the Mozambique Channel from East Africa, other groups continued to settle on Madagascar over time, each one making lasting contributions to Malagasy cultural life. The Malagasy ethnic group is divided into 18 or more sub-groups of which the largest are the Merina of the central highlands. Until the late 18th century, the island of Madagascar was ruled by an assortment of shifting sociopolitical alliances. Beginning in the early 19th century, most of the island was united and ruled as the Kingdom of Madagascar by a series of Merina nobles, the monarchy collapsed in 1897 when the island was absorbed into the French colonial empire, from which the island gained independence in 1960. The autonomous state of Madagascar has since undergone four major constitutional periods, since 1992, the nation has officially been governed as a constitutional democracy from its capital at Antananarivo. However, in an uprising in 2009, president Marc Ravalomanana was made to resign. Constitutional governance was restored in January 2014, when Hery Rajaonarimampianina was named president following a 2013 election deemed fair, Madagascar is a member of the United Nations, the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie and the Southern African Development Community. Madagascar belongs to the group of least developed countries, according to the United Nations, Malagasy and French are both official languages of the state. The majority of the population adheres to traditional beliefs, Christianity, ecotourism and agriculture, paired with greater investments in education, health, and private enterprise, are key elements of Madagascars development strategy. As of 2017, the economy has been weakened by the 2009-2013 political crisis, in the Malagasy language, the island of Madagascar is called Madagasikara and its people are referred to as Malagasy. The islands appellation Madagascar is not of origin, but rather was popularized in the Middle Ages by Europeans. On St. Laurences Day in 1500, Portuguese explorer Diogo Dias landed on the island, polos name was preferred and popularized on Renaissance maps. At 592,800 square kilometres, Madagascar is the worlds 47th largest country, the country lies mostly between latitudes 12°S and 26°S, and longitudes 43°E and 51°E. Neighboring islands include the French territory of Réunion and the country of Mauritius to the east, as well as the state of Comoros, the nearest mainland state is Mozambique, located to the west