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John Avery

(c. 1653)


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(b. c.1653),

pirate, alias Long Ben, born in Devon. In 1694, while a mate aboard the Charles, he incited a mutiny and sailed the ship to the Indian Ocean. His most notable success at piracy came in the Red Sea where he captured two pilgrim ships owned by the Mogul emperor. The loot accumulated from the pilgrims made them all rich men. Some of them elected to stay in the Indian Ocean, but the remainder went with Avery to the Bahamas where they bribed the governor to let them ashore. A number stayed in the area, others sailed to Carolina or, with Avery, to Ireland. The English government did its best to hunt them down and a few were captured and executed, but no one knows for certain what happened to Avery, though some sources say he died in poverty in England.

Subjects: Maritime History.


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