Friday, 31 January 2014

Women Pirates - Ching Shih

In the third Pirates of the Caribbean film, one of the pirate captains is a Chinese woman called Madam Ching. She was based on the real life Ching Shih, which means Widow of Zheng - she married the pirate Zheng Yi, and when he died in 1807, she took over the running of the pirate fleet. At its height, the fleet numbered around one thousand ships, and was known as the Red Flag Fleet. In one battle with the Chinese navy, her fleet captured 63 ships.
In 1810, an amnesty was offered to pirates in the South China Seas. Ching Shih took advantage of this to retire, with all her loot, having negotiated pardons for the majority of her crews as well. She died in 1844, when she was 69, having spent her retirement running a gambling house.

No comments:

Post a Comment