Blackbeard

Blackbeard
/blak"beard'/, n.
pseudonym of Edward Teach.

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orig. Edward Teach

born , Bristol?, Eng.
died Nov. 22, 1718, Ocracoke Island, North Carolina

English pirate.

He was probably a privateer in the West Indies until 1716. With his 40-gun warship, he preyed on shipping off the Virginia and Carolina coasts, sharing his prizes with the governor of the North Carolina colony in return for protection. He was eventually killed by a British naval force, and his head, with its great black beard, was affixed to the end of his bowsprit. According to legend, he left a great buried treasure; it has never been found and probably never existed.

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▪ English pirate
byname of  Edward Teach,  Teach also spelled  Thatch 
born , Bristol?, England
died November 22, 1718, Ocracoke Island, North Carolina [U.S.]
 one of history's most famous pirates, who became an imposing figure in American folklore.

      Thought to have been active as a privateer for the British during the War of the Spanish Succession (Spanish Succession, War of the) (1701–13), Blackbeard was first heard of as a pirate late in 1716. The following year he converted a captured French merchantman into a 40-gun warship, Queen Anne's Revenge, and soon became notorious for outrages along the Virginia and Carolina coasts and in the Caribbean Sea. In 1718 Blackbeard established his base in a North Carolina inlet, forcibly collected tolls from shipping in Pamlico Sound, and made a prize-sharing agreement with Charles Eden, governor of the North Carolina colony. At the request of Carolina planters, the lieutenant governor of Virginia, Alexander Spotswood (Spotswood, Alexander), dispatched a British naval force under Lieutenant Robert Maynard, who, after a hard fight, succeeded in killing Blackbeard. The pirate's body was decapitated, and his head was affixed to the end of the bowsprit of his ship.

      Apart from the luxuriant black beard which earned him his nickname, the most prominent aspect of the Blackbeard legend is his great buried treasure, which has never been found and probably never existed.

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Universalium. 2010.

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