Above painting: Louis Jean Francois - Mars and Venus an Allegory of Peace
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Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Pirates Ships - What’s in a Name?

Pirates were pretty good at brand recognition. No, really. Consider the following. Pirates didn’t attack prey haphazardly. Despite popular belief instilled by books and movies, pirates would rather use scare tactics and nasty reputations than engage in a sea battle. Battles used valuable resources such as
ammunition. Crewmen could be hurt or killed. The prize could be damaged or sunk, defeating the purpose of plundering goods, stealing treasure, or seizing the ship for their own. So when they sailed upon a quarry, it was preferred the victim surrender before no quarter was given.

The first indication a pirate ship was closing in would be their colors. The flags pirates hoisted were recognizable, often red or black and depicting skulls, bones, blood, swords, and even an hourglass, a warning to their prey time was running out. When a Jolly Roger snapped in the wind, there was no question the ship claimed no country and that danger was on the horizon.

It would only make sense that pirates would also use branding with the names they chose for their ships.

Sam Bellamy's flagship

While some pirates never bothered with renaming the ships they seized, most christened their newly acquired vessels with names that held meaning. Many ships were named according to their profession—adventure, fancy, ranger, fortune. Some monikers were meant to boost fear—revenge, delivery, rover, triumph. Others made political statements. It has been suggested that Edward Teach (1680-1718), famously known as Blackbeard, was a Jacobite sympathizer and had named his flagship Queen Anne’s Revenge in support of England’s deposed Queen Anne.

Here is a list of other notable pirates and the ships they captained.

  • Jeanne de Clisson (1300-1359) - The Black Fleet, Revenge
  • Sir Francis Drake (1540-1596) - Golden Hind
  • Peter Easton (1570-1620) - Happy Adventure
  • Henry Morgan (1635-1688) - Satisfaction
  • William Kidd (1645-1701) - Adventure Galley, Adventure Prize
  • Thomas Tew (1649-1695) - Amity
  • Laurens DeGraaf (1653-1704), Anne Dieu-Le-Veut (1661-1710) - Tigre, Francesca, Fortune renamed Neptune
  • Henry Avery (1659-1699) - Fancy
  • Charles Vane (1680-1721) - Lark, Ranger
  • Benjamin Hornigold (1680-1719) - Ranger
  • Richard Worley (?-1718) - New York’s Revenge

    The Golden Hind (replica)
  • William Moody (?-1719) - Rising Sun
  • Robert Sample (?-1719) - Flying King
  • Bartholomew Roberts aka Black Bart (1682-1722) - Royal Rover, Fortune, Good Fortune, Great Ranger, Little Ranger
  • Edward England (1685-1721) - Royal James, Fancy, Ranger
  • Jack Rackham aka Calico Jack (1682-1720), Mary Read(1685-1721), Anne Bonny (1697-possibly 1782) - William
  • Stede Bonnet (1688-1718) - Revenge renamed Royal James
  • Sam Bellamy aka Black Sam (1689-1717) - Whydah Galley
  • George Lowther (?-1723) - Delivery
  • Christopher Condent (1690s-1770) - The Flying Dragon
  • Edward “Ned” Low (1690-1724) - Rebecca, Fancy, Rose Pink, Merry Christmas
  • John Gow (1695-1725) - Fortune
  • Ching Shih (1775-1844) - a whole fleet called the Red Flag Fleet
  • Jean Lafitte (1780-1823) - Dorada 
It’s interesting to note how many ships possessed the same or similar names. Is that because of brand recognition? Possibly. No sense in changing what works. Huzzah! 

About the Author                                                


Jennifer is the award-winning author of the Romancing the Pirate series. Visit her at www.jbrayweber.com or join her mailing list for sneak peeks, excerpts, and giveaways.


Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Water of Life aka Whisky by Madeline Martin

Welcome to History Undressed my good friend and fellow author, Madeline Martin!

One of the fun things about writing historical romance is all the interesting things we learn in our research. While writing the Earl of Benton, I decided to have Alistair Johnstone be a former smuggler of whisky prior to accepting his English earldom.
Scotch whisky, commonly referred to as “uisge beatha” literally translates to “water of life”. Not being a whisky drinker myself, I’d have to disagree because it kind of tastes like straight rubbing alcohol to my ignorant palate.



But I digress. Whisky was distilled for centuries without issue until England and Scotland were crammed together under the same crown and a tax was placed upon malt (an integral ingredient in whisky). While some distilleries legally paid the fees associated with the malt tax to ensure their goods were operating on the right side of the law, many, many more operated illegally.
In fact, so many were in operation that at night, a trail of donkeys could be seen lugging barrels behind them to sell in other locations. Excise men were put to task by the English to catch these thieves and  see them brought to justice, though many of their run ins ended up in bloody shoot outs.

As time went on and the excise men became more abundant, the whisky smugglers got creative. Some built casks to look like a man sitting behind the cart driver with a head fashioned from leather – completely undetectable in the darkness. And still others had steel casks made that would fit over a woman’s shoulders, the round part of the barrel easily giving her the appearance of being with child. Ironically the immense weight of the 2 gallons it held gave the women a rather stiff/waddling gait that made the rouse  entirely believable.
In the Earl of Benton, I got a little creative with what one might do when being tasked with having to smuggle twenty gallons over the Scottish border and into England. It was fun figuring out how to make it work, especially when his lady companion couldn’t know!
In 1823, the distillation of whisky was fully legalized and only required the payment of a mere ten pounds. This was such a miniscule amount that whisky running became almost nothing and the excise men were no longer needed.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

HIS ACTIONS COULD BE TREASON...
Alistair Johnstone’s days of running whisky come to an abrupt halt when he inherits an earldom. After years of living in Scotland and denying his English heritage, he now must return despite his mother’s bitter contempt and his own lack of desire. When his mother’s attempt to run whisky goes awry, Alistair is forced to step in and save her by doing one last whisky run – however, if he’s caught, he will face a traitor’s death.

SHE IS RUNNING FOR HER LIFE...
Emma Thorne’s uncle is trying to kill her and so far has failed, thank goodness. But with only one month until she reaches her majority, inherits her fortune and is released from his guardianship, she knows she is not safe. Emma escapes to a nearby estate where she stumbles upon a house party being held by the Wicked Earls’ Club and finds herself at the mercy of the most extraordinary earl. One who could save her or see her condemned.

PERHAPS THEY CAN SAVE EACH OTHER.
When innocent lies become reality and danger follows them every step of the way, could love be the answer to both their problems, or will their passions be their undoing?
    



WANT TO READ IT?


Amazon: http://hyperurl.co/eobamz
Nook: http://hyperurl.co/eobnk
iBooks: http://hyperurl.co/eobib
Kobo: http://hyperurl.co/eobkobo
Print: http://hyperurl.co/eobprint


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Madeline Martin is a USA TODAY Bestselling author of Scottish set historical romance novels. She lives a glitter-filled life in Jacksonville, Florida with her two daughters (known collectively as the minions) and a man so wonderful he's been dubbed Mr. Awesome. All shenanigans are detailed regularly on Twitter and on Facebook.

Madeline loves animals in sweaters, cat videos, and working out (to support her love of wine and Nutella). As she is unable to have pets herself due to allergies, she has acquired a plastic Halloween skeleton named Nick and a small robot named Meccano - both of whom are dressed up regularly by the minions.

She loves connecting with her readers, so feel free to follow her on any one of her social media platforms, or send her a message :) 
    

FOLLOW MADELINE!

FB page: https://www.facebook.com/MadelineMartinAuthor/
Twitter: @MadelineMMartin
Sign up for her newsletter: http://eepurl.com/biji1j 
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Madeline-Martin/e/B00R8OGFN2/