27 January 2014

Piracy

I did a lot of research on my 1650's pirate campaign.

I am watching "Black Sails" on Starz.

One thing that came up several times in my research is that the pirates tended to be far better gunners than just about anyone else they encountered.

In the 1650's this was because The Thirty Years War had just ended and there was a surplus of men who knew nothing more than how to crew a fighting ship and had, in fact, done nothing else since childhood.  Proficiency was maintained because they weren't actually BUYING ammunition for practice.

Much the same situation prevailed in the early 1700's when Black Sails is set with the end of the Wars of Spanish Succession and Queen Anne's War.  Plus the English gave a monopoly to trade with manufactured goods to the colonies to a chosen few gave a ready market for wares stolen off ships by pirates.  A second golden age of piracy came about.

At any rate, the pirates so far are much better shots and tacticians than the merchants they've attacked.  So far so good.

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