Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

A General History of the Robberies & Murders of the Most Notorious Pirates

3.9 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews
ISBN-13:
ISBN-10: 1599219050
Why is ISBN important?
ISBN
This bar-code number lets you verify that you're getting exactly the right version or edition of a book. The 13-digit and 10-digit formats both work.
Scan an ISBN with your phone
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Buy used
$4.17
Condition: Used - Good
In Stock. Sold by BigHeartedBooks
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: This item is in good condition. All pages and covers are readable. There are no stains or tears. Dust jacket is present if applicable. May contain small amounts of writing and/or highlighting. Spine and cover may show signs of wear. May not contain supplementary items. We ship within 1 business day. Big Hearted Books shares its profits with schools, churches and non-profit groups throughout New England. Thank you for your support!
Access codes and supplements are not guaranteed with used items.
25 Used from $4.17
+ $3.99 shipping
More Buying Choices
16 New from $8.05 25 Used from $4.17

This is a bargain book and quantities are limited. Bargain books are new but could include a small mark from the publisher and an Amazon.com price sticker identifying them as such. Details
Free Two-Day Shipping for College Students with Prime Student Free%20Two-Day%20Shipping%20for%20College%20Students%20with%20Amazon%20Student


The Amazon Book Review
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
click to open popover

Special Offers and Product Promotions


Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

"I presume we need make no Apology for giving the Name of a History to the following Sheets, though they contain nothing but the Actions of a Parcel of Robbers."
A "Parcel of Robbers" they may be, but pirates have long held a special place in our imaginations. The iconography of piracy--peg legs, eye patches, pieces of eight, squawking parrots, the Jolly Roger--was first codified in A General History of the Robberies and Murders of the Most Notorious Pirates. This collection of brief biographies reads like a Who's Who? of piracy, with entries on Captains Kidd, Rackam, and Roberts, women-in-disguise pirates Anne Bonny and Mary Read, and the infamous Edward Teach, a.k.a. Blackbeard, "that couragious Brute, who might have pass'd in the World for a Heroe, had he been employ'd in a good Cause."

First published in 1724, A General History is the book that launched a thousand pirate stories--inspiring Robert Louis Stevenson's Long John Silver, J.M. Barrie's Captain Hook, and Rafael Sabatini's Captain Blood. Though it had been attributed to a shadowy character named Captain Charles Johnson since its date of publication, the book has now been convincingly (though not incontrovertibly) attributed to Daniel Defoe. The 18th-century text, reproduced here complete with the awkward sentence construction, capitalization of nouns proper and common, and frequent italicizing typical of its era, sometimes makes for rather difficult reading, but Defoe's prose still manages to sparkle. With a new introduction by Richard West, author of Daniel Defoe: The Life and Strange, Surprising Adventures, A General History is a must-read for armchair swashbucklers. --C.B. Delaney --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Despite varying titles, these are essentially the same book. Published in 1724, Defoe's chronicle of the scourges of the sea was a smashing success, finding a wide audience eager for tales of those cutthroat sailors who flew the skull and crossbones. The Dover edition is more scholarly, including several essays on Defoe, indexes (ships, names, and places), photos, and a postscript. If you don't need any of that, save a couple of bucks and go with the Carroll & Graf edition.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

New York Times best sellers
Browse the New York Times best sellers in popular categories like Fiction, Nonfiction, Picture Books and more. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Lyons Press (May 4, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1599219050
  • ASIN: B0057DC972
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 7.6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,203,220 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This Cordingly editor messed up a real classic. If you want to read something that is very different from what the original book was, then read this one. It is sad to see pieces of the classics reprinted as the editor thinks fit according to his personal taste, inserting the pirates of the 1724 edition, taking some of the 1726 edition, mixing them in a blender, and offering the results for sale only to make some money. The illustrations are also misleading, adding them as if they were part of the original book, and including several of the 1900's. If you are interested in reading the real thing, refer to a first leaguer such as Manuel Schonhorn, who edited the 1726 edition of Johnson's. It was published by Dover Publications, first printed in 1972, and again in 1999. If you don't want to buy things that don't work, nor be misleaded, then save yourself some dollars in poor books and spend them wisely. P.D. Now that I have both books, I will get rid of Cordingly's version, storing it away in the athic.
1 Comment 37 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
This is yet another of the knock-offs of Captain Charles Johnson's General History of Pirates. It includes narratives of all the old favorites: Blackbeard, Kidd, Roberts, Bonny and others. As usual, Johnson's prose is preserved and some of the original illustrations grace the pages. The editor/publisher has includes a glossary, bibliography and notes to the original text.
However, the down side of this particular volume is that it includes only a subset of Johnson's original writings. And, there is no added index with which to quickly reference particular names and such. While I don't quite agree that the editor has ruined the original, I do find that this version falls short of its potential. P-)
2 Comments 27 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was orginally published in the year of Our Lord, 1726. It is from THIS BOOK that almost all pyrate information is gleaned from. How its written, "Captain Johnson" was there, in person with most of the pirates as they did their dasterdedly deeds. Like (And I quote) "Captain Blackbeard, him also known as Edward Teach or Thatch would spend all night fornicating with his 16 year old wife. Then in the morning before sailing his top officers- some 6 of them- would fornicate with his wife before sailing". Shocking that such details would be given in a book published at this time.
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
1695-1725 is called the Golden Age of Piracy, a time when the black flag of the skull and crossbones provoked terror like nothing else. As European ships fattened with goods and gold left the New World for the Old, pirates were as plentiful as sharks. Courageous, clever, defiant--and drunk--these thieves knew no boundaries as they plied the waters with an unquenchable thirst for mayhem. They burned ships for sport, they murdered, they stole, they even bribed colonial governors to look the other way. One gang actually drew up a formal document declaring war on the entire world.

And many of them swung from the yardarm as they were methodically brought to justice.

The most intriguing aspect of these stories is the portrayal of piratical society. They democratically elected their ship's captain. They debated and voted on their next destination. They followed orders unquestionably. They admired courage under fire, and admired an intelligent mind put to foul deeds. They trusted one another--to a point. As two or three ships sailed together, many a time one of them would weigh anchor in the dead of night and sail off with the booty, leaving their cohorts to cry in their rum--or pursue them and viciously kill `em all for daring to steal from fellow thieves. A perverse maritime code of respect and deceit evolved amongst these men, much like within today's penitentiaries.

Personally, my biggest surprise was the ease with which pirates recruited more pirates. A ship would be overtaken and plundered, and the pirate captain would shout, "Would anyone like to join us?!" and formerly law-abiding seamen would clamber over the rails to join the cutthroats. The free-wheeling life of adventure, ill-gotten wealth, and promiscuity was irresistible.
Read more ›
Comment 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you can get past the old tyme speak and phrases in this book, its a fantastic account of piracy and legendary buccaneers as seen from a true first hand account. Its a reprint of an original book published in the early 1700s. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book as any history buff truly would.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is great fun and amongst all the myth and exaggerated, even made-up stories is a kind of truth of ambiance, mood, tone of the character and legacy of "Pyrates!" (that yell could send shivers to the locals of the time and chills of excitement to any 10 year old boy in my time).
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My copy was the Carroll & Graf edition.

It was interesting to see how the pirates differed in their treatment of prisoners. Some of them were very cruel. It was also interesting to learn of the common practice of hanging the corpses of the executed pirates up in chains for public views for years after - it was also called being "sun dried".

This edition had a number of typos, not real bad, but enough. Compounding the problem is Defoe puts a comma or semi-colon after every four or five words.

Some Defoe's writing seemed like a hurried knock-off from newspaper accounts in some parts. Other parts seem so hurried that it's impossible to follow. The referents are hopelessly confused, you can't tell who did what. Add to that the convoluted way upper class people were beginning to express themselves, and the author just general assumes an archaic mentality and you could be scratching your head for days. This could be dealt with by annotating. Fortunately these incomprehensible passages are relatively few.

Obviously an indispensable classic for the pirate fan.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews