Press Release: A General History of the Robberies & Murders of the Most Notorious Pirates

A General History of the Robberies & Murders of the Most Notorious Pirates

Captain Charles Johnson

Introduced by Margarette Lincoln
Illustrated with original engravings and contemporary woodcuts

‘“Pyrates” more or less introduced all the pirate tropes we know and love today, including peg-legs, buried treasure, piratespeak’
the new yorker


First published in 1724, Captain Charles Johnson’s book remains the most influential account of piratical lore ever written. In the grip of the Golden Age of Piracy, Georgian England had an insatiable appetite for tales of bloodlust and debauchery on the high seas; this stunning new Folio edition brilliantly reproduces Johnson’s graphic accounts of the marauders and their grizzly deeds.


The biographies include notorious names such as Blackbeard, Captain Kidd and Major Bonnet. The legendary Blackbeard battled his foes ‘till the sea was tinctured with blood’; Kidd terrorised trading ships off the coast of America; and Bonnet, ‘the gentleman pirate’, swapped privateering for outright pillaging. The inclusion of female pirates Mary Read and Anne Bonny delighted readers and helped propel the book to best-seller status. Bonny’s fearsome façade even remained intact during the public execution of her lover Captain Jack Rackham – ‘If he had fought like a man, he need not have been hanged like a dog’

Although nothing is known about the author himself, his rollcall of rogues went on to influence writers such as J. M. Barrie and Robert Louis Stevenson. Introduced by eminent maritime historian Margarette Lincoln, who offers a fascinating historical and political perspective on piracy, the edition also includes 35 intricate woodcuts and engravings. The blocked-cloth binding features Major Stede Bonnet’s striking flag motif and the stunning endpapers replicate Jack Rackham’s pirate skull and cutlass totems.

Product information
Bound in printed and blocked cloth. Set in Caslon. 464 pages. Frontispiece and 35 integrated black & white illustrations. Spot UV endpapers. Blocked slipcase. 9 x 5 ¾”

UK £36.95 US $59.95 Can $74.95 Aus $74.95



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