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Female Pirate Lovers Whose Story was Ignored by Male Historians Immortalized with Statue

Historians in the News
tags: public history, LGBTQ history, Piracy



 

Two female pirates famed for leaving a stream of “looted treasure” and “treacherous ex-lovers” behind them have been commemorated with a new statue.

Figures of Anne Bonny and Mary Read have been unveiled at Execution Dock – where pirates and smugglers were executed for more than four centuries – in Wapping, east London.

The statue of Bonny and Read will be taken to Burgh Island, off the south Devon coast which saw pirates come and go for centuries, after Wednesday’s London preview.

Professor Kate Williams, a prominent historian, told The Independent it was critical to unearth the “hidden voices and histories” of women and LGBT+ people. She noted history books have scant information about the pair – despite them being two of the most famous pirates in the 18th century.

Professor Williams added: “They broke gender boundaries and stunned people at the time. They were trailblazers in an incredibly male-dominated society who forged their own way. They were lovers and both fluid – moving between living as men and living as women and it is true, they have been forgotten from history.

“They lived determinedly and followed their hearts – both in being pirates and seeking their own destiny but also following their desire to love each other – when society demanded marriage. 

Read entire article at Independent

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